Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Modesty Blaise (1966)

Director: Joseph Losey

Writers: Evan Jones, Peter O'Donnell, Jim Holdaway, Harold Pinter, Stanley Dubens

Composer: John Dankworth

Starring: Monica Vitti, Terence Stamp, Dirk Bogarde, Harry Andrews, Michael Craig, Clive Revill, Alexander Knox, Rosella Falk, Scilla Gabel, Michael Chow, Joe Melia, Saro Urzi

More info: IMDb

Tagline: Nothing can faze Modesty Blaise, the world's deadliest and most dazzlingly female agent!

Plot: Modesty Blaise, a secret agent whose hair color, hair style, and mod clothing change at a snap of her fingers is being used by the British government as a decoy in an effort to thwart a diamond heist. She is being set up by the feds but is wise to the plot and calls in sidekick Willie Garvin and a few other friends to outsmart them. Meanwhile, at his island hideaway, Gabriel, the diamond thief has his own plans for Blaise and Garvin.

M rating: 5/10

Will I watch it again? No.

I hope the comic strip this is based on moves faster than this picture.  That's the biggest failing of it is the slow pace crippled by the lack of action (good or bad) and a two hour running time.  It doesn't even look like they cast and crew would have had a fun time making it.  It does have its moments but they are few and far between.  The look is 60s mod but that only goes so far which isn't much.  Even taking out that aesthetic out, you can clearly tell this was made in the 60s, which isn't a bad thing necessarily but it's dull.  I'm not convinced you could pare this down to a fun half hour flick.  It barely helps having Dirk Bogarde, Harry Andrews and Terence Stamp in it. Hell, by the time Stamp and Vitti start singing during the Arab island invasion at the end I was just itching to turn it off...but I can't do that.  There's something in me that won't give up on a flick.  I really wanted to like this one, too.  Skip it and watch the better DANGER: DIABOLIK (1968).  I received this 20th Century Fox DVD as a freebie when you bought the newly released James Coburn Flint DVDs.  Geez, that was a dozen years ago and I'm just now getting around to it.  Anyway, the widescreen print looks absolutely marvelous but there isn't a single extra on the disc. 

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