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The Runaway Bus Film Review

Updated on February 15, 2018
Coffeequeeen profile image

Louise is a film enthusiast and enjoys films particularly from the 40's and 50's era & enjoys writing about films she has seen.

The actors & characters in the film

Margaret Rutherford
Cynthia Beeston
Frankie Howerd
Percy Lamn
Marianne Stone
Travel Girl
Belinda Lee
Janie Grey
Lionel Murton
Mexican Traveller
Petula Clarke
Lee Nicholls
Sam Kydd
Security Officer
Toke Townley
Henry Waterman

About the film

The Runaway Bus is another one of them classic films that is perfect to watch when the weather is cold and miserable. Make a mug of coffee, get comfortable on the couch and sit down to watch a film is my idea of bliss. A heavy and thick fog has fallen over much of southern England, which has put a stop to any flights entering or taking off from Heathrow Airport. Cynthia Beeston is a very headstrong and outspoken woman. So when she is told that all the flights have been cancelled, she is adamant that she must be taken to Blackbushe Airport, where she may be able to catch a flight to Dublin. She persuades the B.O.A.C (British Overseas Airways Corporation) to transport her and a few other people to Blackbushe Airport.

Percy Lamb, played by Frankie Howerd, is hired as the relief driver to take them to the airport. They are ushered onto coach 13 where they are to be transported in the thick fog. Little do the people on the bus know that this is £200,000 worth of gold bars hidden in the boot of the bus. And also, that one of the passengers is the villain. When the police eventually find where the gold bars are hidden, they have a number of problems. First and foremost, they have to try and locate where the bus is. Percy informs them that he is lost, so this is problematic. And also they have to talk to Percy over the radio system in the bus. Percy isn't the most patient of people and is often short with them.

But what we see is a typically quintessentially British film where a group of the most unlikely of people are somehow put together on a bus in thick fog to get to an airport that might take them some place else. And to top it all, there's a villain and a stash of gold to top it all off.

My thoughts

I've always like Margaret Rutherford as an actress. In fact, she is the reason I watched this film because I saw her in it. I didn't know that Frankie Howerd was in it though, so to see these two people acting together was surprisingly nice. Margaret played a strong, forthright person who isn't scared to say what she thinks or what she wants. I found the storyline interesting, and kept me watching to the end to see what happens. With Frankie Howerd in it, you are bound to get some comical moments in it. And indeed you do with his trademark ooooo's and groans. And being assigned the job of relief bus driver, you can expect plenty of antics from him. Especially with all problems he has to face with the horrid weather and criminals on the bus. The bus is aptly named coach 13, being the unlucky number.

What I like is that there's no bad language in the film. I don't like films that has too much vulgarity in it. So, although considered a crime film, I like the fact there's no bad language in it and little violence. It was also nice, I thought, to see a young Petula Clarke in it playing Lee Nicholls, assigned the job of looking after the passengers on the bus. She's well known as a singer, but I don't know much of her acting career.

All in all, this is an interesting classic old film to sit down and watch. The acting is strong, and the storyline I enjoyed.

© 2018 Louise Powles


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    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      10 months ago

      You have me on this review. I am going to look this up at the library. I do believe it would make for a great film today.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 

      10 months ago from Shelton

      I got this and streamed it through Decades.. I LOVED it thank you

    • Coffeequeeen profile imageAUTHOR

      Louise Powles 

      11 months ago from Norfolk, England

      Thankyou Frank. Yes, I love all the old classics too.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 

      11 months ago from Shelton

      I loved the classics, and believe it or not I haven't even heard of this one.. I gotta stream it now because of your review.. tell them to send you a check...:)

    • Coffeequeeen profile imageAUTHOR

      Louise Powles 

      12 months ago from Norfolk, England

      Thankyou Margie. I love these old films.

    • Coffeequeeen profile imageAUTHOR

      Louise Powles 

      12 months ago from Norfolk, England

      Yes Dora, that's true. Thankyou for the lovely comment.

    • Margie Lynn profile image

      Margie's Southern Kitchen 

      12 months ago from the USA

      I want to watch this Louise, I have never hear of it! Great review, thanks.

    • CaribTales profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      12 months ago from The Caribbean

      I'm guessing that the British accent only adds to the energy of the excitement. Thanks for your opinion on the movie.

    • Kenna McHugh profile image

      Kenna McHugh 

      12 months ago from Northern California

      This is the first time I have heard of this movie. It reminds me that a filmmaker can create suspend anywhere.

    • Coffeequeeen profile imageAUTHOR

      Louise Powles 

      12 months ago from Norfolk, England

      Thankyou Devika. =)

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      12 months ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      I have not heard of this movie. Your review enlightens me and would like to watch it.

    • Coffeequeeen profile imageAUTHOR

      Louise Powles 

      12 months ago from Norfolk, England

      Yes, I loved him. He was such a great comedian.

    • Claire-louise profile image

      Claire Raymond 

      12 months ago from UK

      I didn't know Frankie Howerd was in it either!

    • Coffeequeeen profile imageAUTHOR

      Louise Powles 

      12 months ago from Norfolk, England

      She's probably most well known for playing Miss Marple in the 60's.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image


      12 months ago from USA

      I don’t think I’ve heard of this classic, but I liked your review. The old lady seems familiar. Maybe she has starred in something I know of?


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