North Sea Hijack ★★★½

North Sea Hijack is a whole host of fun. It may have some tonal problems, there is a moment where Servalan look-alike Lea Brodie is sexually assualted on the hijacked oil rig then it cuts back to Roger Moore prancing about, speaking in misogynist barbed quips, with a bobble hat on acting like a proto-Steve Zissou. These tonal shifts are awkwardly handled, but it does give the film a certain unknowable zip. Moore is pretty hilarious in the lead role, he plays a total dick fairly convincingly, amusing anti-women and pro-feline. His bearded, sarcastic quipster is a lot of fun, the difference between this role and his typical roles is notable.

James Mason is always a nice presence in any film, this one is no different. Though, he does appear to be occasionally looking at Moore as if to say, what the bloody hell are you doing. Anthony Perkins is the third lead, his psychotic terrorist really works, he may be a bit camp, but that mostly works and he occasionally gets to be genuinely threatening. Bizarrely, the scenes on the ship without the terrorists reminded me of the ultra-grim and overrated A Hijacking, which considering the tone of this effort as run by Moore and Perkins, is a little whiplash-inducing.

Michael Parks and David Hedison also turn up.

I would say that my major negative with the film is that it looks fairly rubbish. It has no style, the action scenes are fairly limp bordering on competent and all of the indoor scenes are shot in that Yorkshire TV 1970s house style. However, it is pretty easy to get beyond this, just think of it as a TV movie and move on.

A very enjoyable, if atonal piece of filmmaking.

"You see, I, together with my five elder sisters, was raised by a maiden aunt. Both my parents died tragically in childbirth. Until the age of ten, I was forced to wear my sister's hand-me-downs. Then when I married, I discovered to my horror that my wife also had five sisters, all unmarried, and all expecting my support. I find cats a far superior breed. Just on the off chance, I have made a will. I've left everything to my cats. I want it testified that I am sound of body and mind. Well go on!"

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