The opening scene of the movie describes it best: "Once upon a time there lived in Denmark a great storyteller named Hans Christian Andersen. This is not the story of his life, but a fairy tale about the great spinner of fairy tales."
At the turn of the century, Duke and Chester, two vaudeville performers, go to Alaska to make their fortune. On the ship to Skagway, they find a map to a secret gold mine, which had been ... See full summary »
The throne of rightful king of England, the small babe with the purple pimpernel birthmark, has been usurped by the evil King Roderick. Only the Black Fox can restore the true king to the throne--and all he needs is the king's key to a secret tunnel. And while he's trying to steal it, someone has to change the king's diapers. The task falls to Hawkins, the gentlest member of the Fox's band. The Fox's lieutenant, Maid Jean, guards Hawkins and the babe while they travel, but when they meet the King's new jester on the road, they decide to initiate a daring plan for Hawkins to replace him, become an intimate at the court, and steal the key. So, humble Hawkins becomes Giacomo: the king of jesters and jester to the king. But things begin to get zany when the King's daughter falls for Giacomo, the King falls for Jean, people randomly sing what are supposed to be recognition codes, and a witch with very effective spells (and poison pellets) begins to interfere. Written by
The "flagon with a dragon" routine had an antecedent in the Bob Hope Paramount comedy Never Say Die (1939): "There's a cross on the muzzle of the pistol with the bullet and a nick on the handle of the pistol with the blank." The credits do not list any writers in common on the two films. See more »
During Hawkins and Ravenhurst's fight, the safety buttons on the tips of their swords are visible in some shots. See more »
[sung during the opening credits]
Life could not better be, better be, better be. It could not possibly, no sirrah, sirrah, sirree. Songs could not gayer be. Sound your do-ray-o-me, ray-me-fa-so-la-see, fa la la la follow me. Why be gloomy, cut thy nose off to spite thy face? Listen to me: a nose is hard to replace. Skies could not bluer be; hearts in love truer be. I say for you or me: life couldn't possibly, not even probably, life couldn't possibly better be! Life could not better be on a ...
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During the opening credits, Danny Kaye dances around the credits while singing a song about the movie. The lyrics of the song relate to the credits. For instance, when the music credits go by he sings about the music and when the screenwriter credits go by he sings about the story. See more »
Danny Kaye is excellent in this old fashioned family comedy mixed some musical numbers, slapstick humour with wonderful wit and wordplay. The story moves along regardless of the fact that some events occur just to set up some of the jokes, and also some of the editing effects in one scene are really dated! But you're laughing so much that it doesn't matter.
This is a wonderfully old fashioned family comedy that despite it's age still feels freshly funny and acts to show us how crude and ham-fisted comedies such as American Pie etc really are.
Go and find this and watch it today! ..Get it? Got it! Good!
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