Great Britain has had an international agreement for the last 50 years with a small pacific island. It has been ignored until the death of their king brings it to the attention of the ... See full summary »
Dodger Lane (Peter Sellers) has planned the perfect robbery while in prison. He intends to break out of prison, steal a fortune in diamonds, and break back into prison before anyone notices... See full summary »
The crooks in London know how it works. No one carries guns and no one resists the police. Then a new gang appears that go one better. They dress as police and steal from the crooks. This ... See full summary »
John Lewis is bored by his librarian's job and henpecked at home. Then Liz, wife of a local counciller, sets her sights on him. But this is risky stuff in a Welsh valleys town - if he and ... See full summary »
This is the end of a glorious military career: General Leo Fitzjohn retires to his Sussex manor where he will write his memoirs. Unfortunately, his private life is a disaster: a confirmed ... See full summary »
The Duchy of Grand Fenwick, the smallest country in the world, is nestled in the French Alps. Being as isolated as it is, its life is a throwback to olden days. It is a happy, peace-loving country. Its economy solely rests on export of its only wine, Pinot Grand Fenwick, to the US. When a California vintner starts producing and selling a knock-off of the Pinot Grand Fenwick at a lower price, the Grand Fenwick economy goes into a crisis situation, the country on the brink of bankruptcy. Three protests to the US go largely unanswered. Grand Fenwick's Prime Minister, Rupert of Mountjoy, believes the solution is to declare war on the US, and promptly lose the war in less than a day with no casualties on either side, after which the US, which it has historically done, will provide vast financial aide to rebuild the country. Grand Fenwick's monarch, the Grand Duchess Gloriana XII, ultimately supports this concept. The plan is to send an official declaration of war to the US, have a small ... Written by
Grand Fenwick is ruled by Duchess Gloriana XII, said to be still in mourning for her consort "Leopold of Bosnia Herzegovina". The country of Bosnia and Herzegovina had not existed as an independent nation since 1918, and at the time of filming in 1959 was absorbed within the Republic of Yugoslavia, then under Communist rule. It is likely many people who saw the film thought the name was entirely fictitious. But 33 years after the film's release, Bosnia and Herzegovina was reconstituted as an independent sovereign nation in 1992, after the breakup of Yugoslavia. See more »
After Grand Fenwick's army sets sail for home, the headlines in one American newspapers (the San Francisco Review) talks about war mobilisation. American newspapers would spell it mobilization. See more »
A good, trim, well paced satire brimming with irony
This little satire of the cold war has none of the smug reactionary stances that the original novel had. It takes aim at great powers and small no-powers, it skewers democracies (like the US and Britain) and aristocracies (like the grand duchy of Fenwick and Britain) and shows absolutely no mercy.
Done when Peter Sellers was in his "fat boy" period, this well cut little movie has to be placed in context in order to be appreciated fully. 40 years ago the world was quite different, and this movie reminds you of it. See something totally different from the same period, like Rear Window by Hitchcock to get you in the spirit of the times.
19 of 19 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?