Wednesday, April 29, 2009

4/29/09: One, Two, Three (1961)

It's hard to go wrong with Billy Wilder. I already raved about him last week, when I blogged about his classic Sunset Boulevard from 1950. Today's screener was his film from 11 years later: One, Two, Three, a farcical cold-war satire featuring Jimmy Cagney as an American Coca-Cola executive working in Western Germany and charged with the task of hosting a superior's visiting daughter for a couple of weeks. The 17-year-old girl turns out to be a real firebrand, and wastes no time hooking up with a rebellious young Communist, a horrifying situation Cagney must somehow defuse at all costs or face getting fired. The movie contains nonstop rapid-fire dialogue peppered with hilarious jokes, Marx Brothers style; the pace is absolutely relentless, and is said to be the reason Cagney didn't make another movie for 20 years. It's a shame, because his comic delivery is priceless. I'll be watching this one again. Rating: 5/5.

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