Director Billy Wilder salutes his idol, Ernst Lubitsch, with this comedy about a middle-aged playboy fascinated by the daughter of a private detective who has been hired to entrap him with the wife of a client.
Holland, a shy retiring man, dreams of being rich and living the good life. Faithfully, for 20 years, he has worked as a bank transfer agent for the delivery of gold bullion. One day he befriends Pendlebury, a maker of souvenirs. Holland remarks that, with Pendlebury's smelting equipment, one could forge the gold into harmless-looking toy Eiffel Towers and smuggle the gold from England into France. Soon after, the two plant a story to gain the services of professional criminals Lackery and Shorty. Together, the four plot their crime, leading to unexpected twists and turns. Written by
Rick Gregory <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Holland (Alec Guinness) claims that a car with the registration plate THX 375 has been following the van transporting gold. THX 1138 was George Lucas' directorial debut. Lucas went on to direct Guinness in Star Wars. See more »
During the chase, the license plate on the armored truck is LKL238. The police officer correctly reports the license plate as LKL238. However, when the dispatcher repeats the license plate, he says LKL638. See more »
[replying to Shorty's statement that he and Lackery will wait for Holland and Pendlebury to return from France with their shares of the proceeds]
You mean you both trust us?
Oh, come off it, gov. You're as straight a pair of gentlemen as I ever worked for.
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One of the most engaging and witty movie I have seen
The DVD used Audrey Hepburn's first movie appearance as a promotion. Together with the fact that Alec Guinness is the leading man, I immediately jumped at the chance of watching the film.
The film began with Alec Guinness recalling his life last year, as a 20-year bank clerk and how he plotted to steal a vast amount of gold. Stanley Holloway (who also starred as Eliza's father in My Fair Lady) and Alec Guinness made a wonderful couple. And watch out for the elegant Audrey Hepburn in the first 10 minutes of the movie.
The story unfolded nicely as Alec narrated how he formulated his plan, how he recruited partners to execute his well-thought plan and how, when their plan did go wrong, they improvised. The scene of them chasing after Englsih school girls at the Eiffel Tower in Paris is particularly impressive. It is as if they were flying in the air and laughing their hearts out on a merry-go-round. I kept wondering how modern movies did not make such shots any more. It was funny to see how they persisted in order to succeed. They were like serious school kids who was intent on completing their project by any means. Never did they think of betraying their team members.
With an excellent script, funny characters and a marvellous twist in the end, this movie is not a bit out of date. Love to watch it again soon.
29 of 31 people found this review helpful.
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