The Wrong Arm Of The Law

In DVD/Blu-ray by Paula Hammond - Features Editor

From the pen of TV comedy-gods, Ray Galton and Alan Simpson (Hancock’s Half Hour, Steptoe And Son) comes The Wrong Arm Of The Law—a comedy crime-caper that finally gets its blu-ray release this May.

Fully-restored for the first time, The Wrong Arm Of The Law stars a host of British big-names, including  the legendary Peter Sellers, Lionel Jeffries, Bernard Cribbins, Nanette Newman, John Le Mesurier, Davy Kaye, Irene Brown and Arthur Mullard.

In London, a group of Australian gangsters disguised as police men, led by Jack Coombes (Bill Kerr), are diverting the ill-gotten gains of the local criminal gangs. When Gang leader ‘Pearly’ Gates (Sellers), who operates from the cover of a French couturier, finds his takings severely cut, he initially he blames rival crook ‘Nervous’ O’Toole (Bernard Cribbins). But, when it emerges that they are both being scammed by the same gang, they form an unlikely alliance with Scotland Yard Police Inspector-Nosey’ Parker (Jeffries), to eliminate their rivals. Along the way, Nanette Newman provides the love interest, John Le Mesurier is as suave as ever as Parker’s long-suffering boss, and a young Michael Caine has a small and uncredited role as a PC.

While not as familiar to audiences as other well-loved ‘60s comedies, this is every-inch a classic. Sellers and Cribbins are on top-form—with Cribbins especially notable as the twitchy, paranoid Irish gangster, with not a shred of his usual trademark cheeky-chappy persona present. The comedy is well-judged and keenly-observed and the restoration ensures that the visuals are as sharp as the humour. 

The release comes as part of StudioCanal’s prestigious Vintage Classics Collection which are fully-restored with brand new extra content. 

Special features:

  • New feature, The Long Arm Of The Screenwriter—John Antrobus Remembers The Wrong Arm of The Law.
  • Behind the Scenes stills gallery.
  • Original trailer.