The weddings were forgotten in My Friend Irma Goes West as Dean Martin guest stars on a radio program and attracts the attention of film star Corinne Calvet to the jealousy of Diana Lynn. Lund is also footloose and fancy free again with his eternal get rich quick schemes that were a big component of My Friend Irma.
However Lynn puts her foot down and takes over management of Martin's career and negotiates a contract with a Hollywood mogul. Who turns out to be an escapee from a booby hatch, but our fearless quintet goes out to Hollywood first class for a job that doesn't exist.
Martin's singing and Lewis's clowning do get them noticed in Las Vegas as he gets booked in Bugsy Siegel's up and coming town. And Lund gets outdealed literally by gangster Lloyd Corrigan in a marvelous bit of casting against type. Of course all the financial and romantic problems get sorted out in the end.
When I reviewed the first My Friend Irma film I said that the Irma character would be great for Jessica Simpson to revive. After seeing this film I still maintain that. God has a special province for Marie Wilson's character who just tra-la-la's through life and somehow makes it through.
There's a bit more of Dean and Jerry in this film than the previous one. Their next film would be At War With The Army where they would finally star.
Corinne Calvet talked at length about this film for Nick Tosches's biography of Dean Martin. Her experience in Hollywood was not a happy one and she mentions the casting couch that both Hal Wallis and Darryl Zanuck used with regularity. In her case she was to service them also for her then husband John Bromfield. She said that Dino was a pleasant person to work with, confident and assured. She liked Jerry as well, but felt there was a certain insecurity with him as he was continually 'on' all the time as if trying hard to please.
The film called for her to work with a chimpanzee, her and Jerry and she said the ape was paying close attention to her. She was asked where she was in her menstrual cycle and when she told director Hal Walker, he said the ape was giving her a booty call. That was a bit unnerving, but I'll bet Corinne got passes just as crude from some humans.
The score was written by Jay Livingston and Ray Evans and it yielded an early hit for Dean Martin with I'll Always Love You which has a nice Latin flavored tempo to it. My Friend Irma Goes West is still a funny film and the comedy is timeless so it really could be revived today.
Are you reading this Jessica Simpson?