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The popular 1960s British pop group Herman's Hermits star as a struggling pop band in their third film together, Mrs. Brown, You've Got a Lovely Daughter (1968), a title taken from the group's first number-one single that topped the Billboard music charts in 1965. Lead singer Peter Noone (aka Herman) heads up the cast in this good-natured musical comedy supported by the Hermits: Karl Green on bass, Barry Whitwam on drums, and Keith Hopwood and Derek Leckenby on guitar. Mrs. Brown is the name of a racing dog that the band inherits. The Hermits travel from Manchester, England, to London playing gigs to finance Mrs. Brown's racing competition fees. Meanwhile, girl-next-door Tulip (Sheila White) is in love with Herman, but he is oblivious to her crush. When the group meets a wealthy family in London also named Brown, Herman falls hard for their lovely daughter Judy (Sarah Caldwell). Between the romantic triangle and the musical numbers, the band also meets a shady con artist and loses the dog in this lightweight romantic comedy.
Herman's Hermits was one of the many British import bands to arrive in America on the coattails of the Beatles, and one of the very few that also found success. Having to follow in those footsteps, it's no wonder that Mrs. Brown, You've Got a Lovely Daughter has the feel of a Fab Four movie like A Hard Day's Night (1964) or Help! (1965). After all, it was produced by Allan Klein, a former business associate of the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. In the days before music videos, films like these helped promote the bands and capitalized on their recording success.
Mrs. Brown, You've Got a Lovely Daughter highlights some of the group's catchy pop tunes like "There's a Kind of Hush," "The Most Beautiful Thing in My Life" and the title track, which was re-recorded for the film's soundtrack to give it new life. It originally appeared on their early album Introducing Herman's Hermits. Mrs. Brown was produced by rock and roll manager Allen V. Klein and directed by Saul Swimmer, who later made such other films as Cometogether (1971), The Concert for Bangladesh (1972) and We Will Rock You: Queen Live in Concert (1982).
Having garnered some acting experience on the popular British soap opera Coronation Street before joining the Hermits, Peter Noone admirably leads the cast of mostly non-actors. Some more seasoned performers lend extra support to the young cast in Mrs. Brown, You've Got a Lovely Daughter, including Stanley Holloway and Mona Washbourne as Mr. and Mrs. Brown, the parents of his beloved Judy.
Producer: Allan Klein, David W. Orton
Director: Saul Swimmer
Screenplay: Thaddeus Vane
Cinematography: Jack Hildyard
Editing: Tristam Cones
Art Direction: George Provis
Music: Ron Goodwin, Graham Gouldman, Trevor Peacock, Geoff Stephens, Kenny Young
Cast: Peter Noone (Herman), Karl Green (Karl), Keith Hopwood (Keith), Derek Leckenby (Derek), Barry Whitwam (Barry), Stanley Holloway (Mr. Brown), Mona Washbourne (Mrs. Brown), Lance Percival (Percy Sutton), Marjorie Rhodes (Gloria Tulley).
by Andrea Foshee