Monday, December 2, 2013

A Shot in the Dark (1964)

Director: Blake Edwards

Writers: Blake Edwards, William Peter Blatty, Harry Kurnitz, Marcel Achard

Composer: Henry Mancini

Starring: Peter Sellers, Elke Sommer, George Sanders, Herbert Lom, Tracy Reed, Graham Stark, Moira Redmond, Vanda Godsell, Maurice Kaufmann, Ann Lynn, David Lodge, Andre Maranne, Martin Benson, Burt Kwouk, Bryan Forbes

More info: IMDb

Tagline: It's Sellers the Sleuth... and there's nothing he won't do to track down a body -- dead or alive!

Plot: As murder follows murder, beautiful Maria is the obvious suspect; bumbling Inspector Clouseau drives his boss mad by seeing her as plainly innocent.

My rating: 6/10

Will I watch it again? I almost have to.  I'll explain.

I last saw this in the late 80s and I loved it.  At that time I dug all of the Peter Sellers Pink Panther movies.  As time went on I watched THE PINK PANTHER again a decade later and didn't laugh once.  Suddenly A SHOT IN THE DARK was the hilarious one.  This year I watched the original film and loved it and now having watched SHOT again, it's this one that barely coaxed a single laugh out of me and I was ready to revisit this like an old friend filled with fond memories.  What the hell happened?  If you didn't think the original '63 film felt like a Pink Panther movie then you'll probably dig this one.  It introduces Herbert Lom (I love this guy) as Clouseau's boss, Dreyfus , and Bert Kwouk as Kato, Clouseau's trusty companion who is always on the ready for surprise attacks on Clouseau to keep his skills sharp. Sellers owns the roll, of course, and this picture is written with him as the focus unlike the first picture.  Henry Mancini's music is top notch.  He's got a groovy main theme that's one of my favorites.  I could hum that tune all day long.  But there's something about this that didn't grab me like before.  There are no belly-busting laughs; just a few slight 'ha-ha's'.  Kato's attack in the bedroom is about the funniest scene in the picture.  I'm not going to give up on this one.  I used to love this one as a child and I'm going to give it another shot (ahahahahahaha) a few years down the road.  I remember liking the next two a lot and now I'm kind of nervous.  It could just be a nostalgia thing.

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