Series 2, Episode 19: Mr. L.F. Dibley’s latest film ‘if’
INTERVIEWER Graham Chapman
L.F. DIBLEY Terry Jones
(Mix through to a picture on a TV monitor and pull out from monitor to reveal a studio set as for a late-night discussion programme.)
Interviewer: Mr. L.F. Dibley’s latest film ‘if’. (he turns to Dibley) Mr. Dibley, some people have drawn comparisons between your film, ‘if’, which ends with a gun battle at a public school, and Mr Lindsay Anderson’s film, ‘if’, which ends with a gun battle at a public school.
Dibley: Oh yes, well, I mean, there were some people who said my film ‘aooz – A Space Odyssey’, was similar to Stanley Kubrick’s. I mean, that’s the sort of petty critical niggling that’s dogged my career. It makes me sick. I mean, as soon as I’d made ‘Midnight Cowboy’ with the vicar as Ratso Rizzo, John Schlesinger rushes out his version, and gets it premiered while mine’s still at the chemist’s.
Interviewer: Well, we have with us tonight one of your films, ‘Rear Window’, which was to become such a success for Alfred Hitchcock a few weeks later. Now this is a silent film, so perhaps you could talk us through it…
(Cut to a dim, shaky 8mm shot of a window. It is open. After a few seconds a man appears and looks out. He then performs over-exaggerated horror and points, looking at camera. Then he disappears and then he reappears.)
Dibley: Yes, well, let’s see now … there’s the rear window. There’s the man looking out of the window. He sees the murder. The murderer’s come into the room to kill him, but he’s outwitted him and he’s all right. The End. I mean, Alfred Hitchcock, who’s supposed to be so bloody wonderful, padded that out to one and a half hours … lost all the tension… just because he had bloody Grace Kelly he made £3 million more than I did. Mind you, at least she can act a bit, I could have done with her in ‘Finian’s Rainbow’ … The man from the off-licence was terrible … a real failure that was – ten seconds of solid boredom.
(Cut to shaky titles: Mr Dibley’s ‘Finian’s Rainbow starring the man from the off-licence’. Cut to the man from the off-licence standing by a tennis-court. He wears a dress and appears to be trying to say something – he has forgotten his words. He does an unconvincing little dance. CAPTION: ‘THE END’)
Dibley: Bloody terrible.