Adapted by Max Wilk from his own novel, Don't Raise the Bridge, Lower the River, is a mildly diverting production, filmed at Britain's Shepperton Studios, and starring Jerry Lewis as a perennial dreamer. An initial lack of clarity in plot premise, followed by routine and not very exciting episodic treatment add up to a generally flat result.

Adapted by Max Wilk from his own novel, Don’t Raise the Bridge, Lower the River, is a mildly diverting production, filmed at Britain’s Shepperton Studios, and starring Jerry Lewis as a perennial dreamer. An initial lack of clarity in plot premise, followed by routine and not very exciting episodic treatment add up to a generally flat result.

Weaknesses are apparent at the very beginning: a series of disparate locations, after which it finally is established that Lewis is an eternal dreamer.

Subsequent to this revelation, story plods along in a dramatic monotone, progressing, but never building, towards an inevitable happy ending, after 99 slow minutes.

Featured players Terry-Thomas as the typical promoter; Bernard Cribbins as a garage mechanic who doubles as a steward on unscheduled airlines; and Patricia Routledge, a man-hungry Girl Scout leader, are quite excellent in their appearances.

Lewis comes across as uncertain of whether he is supposed to ham it up at times, play it down at others.

Don't Raise the Bridge, Lower the River

UK

Production

Columbia. Director Jerry Paris; Producer Walter Shenson; Screenplay Max Wilk; Camera Otto Heller; Editor Bill Lenny; Music David Whitaker; Art Director John Howell

Crew

(Color) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1968. Running time: 99 MIN.

With

Jerry Lewis Terry-Thomas Jacqueline Pearce Bernard Cribbins Patricia Routledge Nicholas Parsons
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