There Was a Crooked Man (1960) Blu-ray Review

For fans of Norman Wisdom there should be a little treat as Network have recently released a “Remastered” version of There Was a Crooked Man (1960) on to blu-ray.  Have they done a good job?  Let’s find out here’s my There Was a Crooked Man blu-ray review.

  • There Was a Crooked Man (1960)
  • B/W
  • UK Rating PG
  • Discs: 1
  • Released By Network
  • Blu-ray Released: 30th April 2018
  • Genre: Comedy


Davy Cooper (Norman Wisdom) is a rather naive former army explosives expert that finds himself caught up with a criminal gang that likes to rob safes.  They put to good use Davy’s talents until one unfortunate job lands him in prison.  Upon release he finds a job in a small town run pretty much by one man, McKillup.  Determined to go straight Davy learns that McKillup has plans that would come at the expense of the towns folk maybe now he can put his skills to achieve something good for the town.

Style / Direction

The film is directed by Stuart Burge with the cinematography handled by Arthur Ibbetson.

Music / Audio Effects

The music is provided by Kenneth V. Jones and it provides a comical tone throughout.  There are large parts of the film in which there is little or no real dialogue with the music proving to be a suitable replacement.

Acting / Characters

If you like Norman Wisdom you will know exactly what to expect, it’s a fun and easy watch.


  • Norman Wisdom as Davy Cooper
  • Alfred Marks as Adolf Carter
  • Andrew Cruickshank as McKillup
  • Reginald Beckwith as Station Master
  • Susannah York as Ellen

Conclusion: There Was a Crooked Man (1960) Film Review

There Was a Crooked Man is a fun easy to watch film with Norman Wisdom a more than likeable character.  It’s certainly worth a look if you like his style of comedy.

There Was a Crooked Man blu-ray review

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Conclusion: There Was a Crooked Man Blu-ray Review

I’ll start by quoting the remastering Notes on the blu-ray box:

“Virtually unseen since its release in 1960, There Was a Crooked Man was independently made between Follow a Star and The Bulldog Breed –  When Norman Wisdom was at the peak of his Rank career.  This brand-new transfer was produced by using various 35mm film elements to make the longest possible version and, while every effort has been made to ensure consistent quality throughout, some variations in picture quality and sound will occasionally be apparent due to the condition of the source materials.”

Remaster commissioned by Network Distributing Ltd
How did it turn out?

I have to congratulate them for trying to make the best possible version, however I cannot understand why there a black and white speckles throughout the film.  I can accept that some of the picture quality may be of poorer quality but it does not appear to have had a basic clean-up applied to it.  I may be wrong and I can only speak from seeing this blu-ray version but considering they are making a big deal about remastering it I would have expected a better final print.

The plus point has to be that this is supposedly the longest version they could piece together and for that I applaud Network it’s just a shame a basic clean-up wasn’t undertaken.  I’ve seen them do amazing blu-ray versions of many television series such as Randall and Hopkirk and The Professionals and the first series of The Sweeney so I’m more than a little disappointed with how this one turned out.

I think the term remaster is a little misleading, this is more of a reconstruction and for that part I salute Network for piecing the film back together.  However I would say it now requires some remastering work to really justify the blu-ray release.


  • Image Gallery
  • Original Promotioanl Material
  • Booklet

Popcorn Cinema Rating:

There Was a Crooked Man (1960)





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There Was a Crooked Man (1960) Blu-ray Review

There Was a Crooked Man (1960) Trailer

For those of you yet to see the film I’ll leave you with a little taster…

Clip may not be representative of the blu-ray version

That concludes my There Was a Crooked Man blu-ray review, if you have any thoughts on this film you can leave them on our Facebook page.

What Do You Think?
Summary: There Was a Crooked Man (1960) Blu-ray Review
There Was a Crooked Man (1960) Blu-ray Review

Movie title: There Was a Crooked Man (1960)

Duration: 107 mins

Director(s): Stuart Burge

Actor(s): Norman Wisdom, Alfred Marks , Susannah York , Andrew Cruickshank, Reginald Beckwith

Genre: Comedy

  • Movie Rating
  • Blu-ray Picture Rating
  • Extras


A fun easy to watch film that sadly still needs remastering.