The Wildcats Of St. Trinian's. Image shows from L to R: Lizzie (Veronica Quilligan), Flash Harry (Joe Melia). Image credit: Wildcat Film Productions.

The Wildcats Of St. Trinian's

St. Trinian's School for Girls plans to form a trade union, and start infiltrating the elite colleges of England in order to achieve a closed shop

Strand:
St. Trinian's Film Series
Genre:
Film
Released:
1980
Starring:
Sheila Hancock, Michael Hordern, Rodney Bewes, Maureen Lipman, Julia McKenzie, Joe Melia, Veronica Quilligan, Thorley Walters, Deborah Norton, Rose Hill, Luan Peters
Writers:
Ronald Searle, Frank Launder
Production:
Wildcat Film Productions

The girls of St. Trinian's are once again unsatisfied with their lot. Under the continued guidance of Flash Harry, they determine that the best route to getting their way is to form a trade union, signing up the rest of the country's girls schools and declaring a closed shop.

But St. Trinian's is, of course, not like any other girl's school, and they'll have to infiltrate each individual institution to achieve their ends. When they unknowingly kidnap a foreign Princess, divisions between the strikers begin to show, and soon they're warring amongst themselves!

Our Review: Although it reflects broadly the same anarchic tone of the original St. Trinian's films, and even some of their style, Wildcats sadly fails to capture their spirit.

In particular, Hancock's portrayal of the school's Dutch headmistress is peculiar at best; her affected accent rotates between German, Dutch and Russian with almost every word. The loss of both Alec Guinness and George Cole from the series could also be said to played a part in this lacklustre offering.

Despite those few clear quibbles, it's difficult to define quite why Wildcats doesn't work. The script has its moments but isn't too shabby overall, and the performances of the cast are by-and-large worthy of any of the original movies. Perhaps it's just a matter of the themes that the film embraced (industrial relations) clashing with the schoolgirl environment and societal attitudes in the late 1970s and early 1980s.