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The Boat (clip)

Fictional Comedy with Chic Murray

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A light-hearted comedy about a man who inherits a cabin cruiser called 'The Periwinkle'. The film shows a series of comic events befalling the inheritor (played by Chic Murray) and others on the water. Much of the action centres around the cabin cruiser which we see inside and out. The humour is for the most part gentle and slapstick in nature. A variety of different boats are shown as the cabin cruiser runs aground, takes on water and drifts in the night. Finally the cruiser becomes entangled in six rowing boats, dragging them along in its wake.

Questions & Activities


  • Why do boats float?
  • What is the purpose of this clip?
  • What makes you laugh?
  • How does the comedy work?
  • What type of music is used and how does this make the narrative work?
  • What makes Chic Murray's character funny?
  • How is he funny in a Scottish context?
  • Can you think of any other television programmes or films that this clips reminds you of - explain your answers.


Drama: List the comic elements.

Drama: Research Chic Murray and his significance in the development of Scottish comedy. Why is Billy Connelly such a fan?

Drama / English: Research on-line how the jokes work and the different types of comedy used.

Media Studies: What are the sound cues that can you use when making a film that do not just provide information, but convey a mood, tone, time of day etc?

Media Studies: If this film was made today what changes would be brought to the script? Storyboard an updated version.

Media Studies: Compare this film to other comic characters (e.g. Mr Bean). Discuss what makes his character funny and what Scottish references you can find. What makes each particular joke funny?

English: What do you think would happen next. Write the next comic moment.

Clip Details

Record Id 007-000-002-367-C
Resource Rights Holder National Library of Scotland
Project Ref 3067
Date 1975
Genre Fiction, Fictional Drama
School Subject Expressive Arts, Drama, Media Studies, English, Social Studies
Who Chic Murray (performer), Films of Scotland (sponsor), IFA (Scotland), (production company), Laurence Henson (director, writer)
Where Loch Lomond
Event Boating, Comedy
Attributes Colour, Sound
Clip Length 9:18
Film Length 19:00