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A pure delight for Marika fans

8/10
Author: Eleanor Knowles Dugan (duganek@aol.com) from San Francisco
12 June 2010

Although I can't speak German, alas, I had no trouble following the gist of this big, fabulous, fun musical. Marika Rokk was 46 when she filmed it and makes teen-aged Debbie Reynolds look like Whistler's mother. The gist of the story (I think) is that Rokk (sorry, Amazon doesn't let me to make umlauts without disconnecting me) is the owner and/or star of a South American nightclub. Unbenownst to her, the managers/bosses are gangsters and drug runners. Her daughter arrives in a school uniform (ndicating innocent sexiness), bringing along the boy she hopes to marry. However, the boy's stern papa back in German objects strongly. Marika discovers through a photo that she knows the man -- a former lover? Are the young couple brother and sister? This is skipped over, so perhaps not. Marika decides to fly with the youngsters to Germany and get papa's approval. The gangsters decide to include a shipment of heroin in her luggage. In Germany, Marika assumes various identities and disguises, most involving huge dance numbers in wildly colorful costumes. Her astute comic timing and ability to mug while being gorgeous gets full play. All ends well for the good guys, of course. This is basically a Twentieth-Century Fox musical in German, and totally enjoyable even for us non-German speakers.

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