The Young Ones (1961)

If you create a user account, you can add your own review of this DVD

Released 11-Feb-2003

Cover Art

This review is sponsored by

Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Musical Main Menu Audio
Theatrical Trailer
Rating ?
Year Of Production 1961
Running Time 103:48
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Sidney J. Furie

Universal Pictures Home Video
Starring Cliff Richard
Carole Gray
Robert Morley
The Shadows
Susan Hampshire
Richard O'Sullivan
Melvyn Hayes
Una Stubbs
Case ?
RPI Box Music Brian Bennett
Roy C. Bennett
Various Others

Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.35:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles None Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

      In the mood for a bit of sentimentality? Hair Brylcreemed? Pointy shoes polished? Petticoats primped? Then come on kids - let's groove!!

      This film is probably best watched by the already converted. I imagine it'd be a bit of a hard sell to get my teenaged progeny to sit down and watch this movie without making pointy eyebrowed faces or rude gagging gestures. I myself am only *just* of an age to remember a world this innocent, but my husband (a product of 1947 - no doubt a very good year) was singing and bopping away within moments of this movie cranking up in the machine. The whole experience of watching this makes one realise the chasm between the early 60s and these noughties - from drop-down record players to MP3 recorders, from jammin' the airwaves of the BBC to instant global communication on the Net - my oh my haven't things changed.

      But I digress. This movie is one of Cliff Richard's "Big Three", the others being Summer Holiday and Wonderful Life (aka Swingers' Paradise - yikes!).

      And so to the story itself, as if you didn't know!

      Young Nicky (Cliff Richard) and his girlfriend Toni (Carole Gray) are the royalty of their local Youth Club, where they hang out with all the other kids, dancing to Nicky and The Shadows' music, and playing records and games. They are hip and they are cool. So imagine their horror when their pal Ernest (played by a very young Richard O'Sullivan, who would later feature in Doctor films and Man About The House and Robin's Nest) confirms that their hangout is indeed about to be overtaken and bulldozed by the corporate tycoon, Hamilton Black (Robert Morley). Oh no!!! How will the kids save their clubhouse!

      Here's a great idea - why don't they put on a show!!!! So - will the kids endure all the complications and triumph? Well, who am I to spoil the ending!

      In all truth, it's really rather long for such a flimsy little plot, but somehow we forgive it because it evokes a more optimistic and energetic era, or so it seems in the dustier light of hindsight. There are times when the staging is utterly hysterical, with early attempts at special effects coming across as self conscious in the extreme, and the scripting is almost a triumph of vapidity. This is cheesy in the extreme, or, as the trailer suggests, "The gayest movie in years!" - well you said it daddyo!!

Don't wish to see plot synopses in the future? Change your configuration.

Transfer Quality


     For a forty odd year old film, it's really not too bad at all.

     The transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 2.35:1, 16x9 enhanced.

     Considering the age of the original stock, the sharpness and luminance are surprisingly good. There's little low level noise and shadow detail is really not a problem. Occasionally there's a slight opacity to some scenes, but overall not enough to distract or qualify as poor. Grain levels were reasonably fine.

     Colours also were surprisingly pleasing. There was occasional posterisation of a minor scale which made the colours a tad blocky, but overall, skin tones were very good and a full and rich colour palette was on display.

     With the exception of a hint of telecine wobble at times, there were really only appearances of the major culprits, aliasing and motion blur, but not at too great a level. I've certainly seen worse examples of both sins in far more recent films. There was a small amount of moiré appearing on the odd tweed jacket and a touch of detail loss in mid and background parts of some scenes, but again, these crimes have been far more aggressive in other films I've seen. There was the odd scratch or dust blight, but these I am prepared to draw a veil of discretion over, as they did not distract from the film overall.

     There were no subtitles available on this film.

     The Young Ones is presented on a dual layered disc with the movie confined to a single layer (Wonderful Life, reviewed separately, takes up the other layer).

Video Ratings Summary
Shadow Detail
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts


     The single English Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack available does its job.

     Most of the time, dialogue was distinct and clear, although occasionally, there was a faint buzzing that was obviously annoying, but mercifully intermittent. Audio sync was a bit of a minor challenge, though the worst offences definitely occurred through the musical numbers which at times were horribly mimed and way out from the audio. Ah well - we've all seen a few movies like that in the past!

      There's plenty to get sentimental about musically, with original Shadows numbers being performed and a myriad of known and not so well remembered early 60s songs. The music is precisely what you'd expect, and is nostalgia to the nth degree.

     Overall, the sound was pretty nondirectional and a tad sharp and tinny at times. The subwoofer was nonexistent, and there was some variance to the timbre and quality of the sound. Sometimes it sounded shrill and tinny, then it sounded a bit like it was underwater. This was noticeable but not exceptional to the point of fury.

Audio Ratings Summary
Audio Sync
Surround Channel Use


Theatrical Trailer - The Young Ones (3:28)

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

      The two regions seem to offer the same, so R4 is the winner for reasons of proximity.


     It's cheesy, it's silly but it's oh-so sentimental. If you've seen them before, you know what to expect. This movie hearkens back to a kinder, gentler time, when the world could be fixed with a song and a little im-ag-in-ation. A quite respectable transfer of a bit of nostalgia.

Ratings (out of 5)


© Mirella Roche-Parker (read my bio)
Wednesday, January 21, 2004
Review Equipment
DVDSinger SGD-001, using S-Video output
DisplayTeac 76cm Widescreen. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationTeac 5.1 integrated system
SpeakersTeac 5.1 integrated system

Other Reviews NONE
Comments (Add)
R2 Version includes Director's Commentary - Chris W (read my bio)