Thursday, March 30, 2017

That Lucky Touch (1975)

Director: Christopher Miles

Writers: Moss Hart, John Briley, Monja Danischewsky

Composer: John Scott

Starring: Roger Moore, Susannah York, Shelley Winters, Lee J. Cobb, Jean-Pierre Casssel, Raf Vallone, Sydne Rome, Donald Sinden, Michael Shannon, Aubrey Woods, Alfred Hoffman, Vincent Hall, Fabian Cevallos

More info: IMDb

Tagline: When a No-No girl meets a Go-Go man - WHAM!!!

Plot: A European arms dealer (Roger Moore) meets a liberated woman journalist (Susannah York), who is writing a story about the ridiculous things men do with the armaments during a NATO war games meeting. Needless to say, the two meet and make sparks.

My rating: 6/10

Will I watch it again?  No.

I last saw this over thirty years ago and I never forgot the main theme.  It's really catchy and fun.  Being a huge Moore fan going to back to when I was a kid in the 70s (he was my first cinema Bond don't forget the first.  Ahahahahaha).  Cobb is a lot of fun, as usual, and so is Winters.  She was always a pro and put everything into her performances even when they were small.  Roger Moore is Roger Moore.  I love the guy and I like his persona even though he didn't stretch his acting chops as often as I (and probably he) would like.  But he's charming and does a fine job.  Hell, the cast does a fine job all the way around.  It's not even that bad of a picture but it has some problems.  Being about an hour and a half is an issue.  Michael (Moore) and Julia (York) meet briefly early on but it's not until a half hour in that there's any type of get-to-know-you-time.  That's the extended sequence in his apartment after she's locked out of hers across the hall.  It's a lengthy scene that's cute and doesn't overstay its welcome.  At one point she locks him out of his place and this happens...

I'd totally forgotten about this bit since I first saw it but I remembered laughing hard just like I did this time.  It just tickles me to death and it's one of those things that could've been a last minute idea.  There's not an awful lot of time spent with Michael doing his arms dealing business but it's enough I guess to establish what he does.  The big issue I have is the final act when Julia throws a wrench into the war games that is not only not funny or all that necessary to the story but it makes for a very weak final half hour.  The first hour or so was strong enough that it deserved a better confrontation and finale.  One thing I noticed is that the ring tone for Lt. General Steedman's (Cobb) red hotline to the President barely made a beeping noise.  The VHS tape I had 30+ years ago had the awesome and hilarious ring tone that was used for Cobb's character in the FLINT pictures with James Coburn in the mid-60s.

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