You don’t expect this sort of ill-conceived vitriol from Blake Edwards, creator of the amiable, if idiotic, Inspector Clouseau, especially when Edwards’s wife Julie Andrews – the wholesome Mary Poppins herself – is the star.
Yet – posing as a satirical comedy – this attack on Hollywood values, is one of the rudest and crudest flicks ever made at the expense of Tinseltown, as Richard Mulligan, playing producer Felix Farmer, decides to turn his art-movie stinker into a soft-porn success, with screen-wife Andrews as Sally Miles in the leading role.
William Holden co-stars as the director on the flop, Robert Vaughn is a ruthless film executive, Robert Preston plays Felix Farmer’s eccentric physician, Robert Webber is a press agent, Loretta Swit a feared gossip columnist, and Stuart Margolin is Sally’s gay social secretary.
Shelley Winters appears as a powerful Hollywood agent and Larry Hagman plays the vice president of a film studio.
As the showbiz in-fighting gets worse, it’s obvious that Edwards is paying off old, rancorous scores, but such personal venom slows down the pace and the point – though Clouseau will never seem the same again.
Dr Irving Finegarten