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.
A cameraman is knocked over during a football game. His brother in law as the king of the ambulance chasing lawyers starts a suit while he's still knocked out. The cameraman is against it until he hears that his ex-wife will be coming to see him. He pretends to be injured to get her back, but also sees what the strain is doing to the football player who injured him. Written by
John Vogel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This was director Billy Wilder's second film in a row in which one of his lead actors suffered a heart attack. In preceding film, 1964's Kiss Me, Stupid (1964), Peter Sellers' health problem forced Wilder to replace him with Ray Walston. In Fortune Cookie, Walter Matthau suffered attack midway through production but shooting was postponed until he recovered; his drastic weight loss from scene to scene is noticeable. See more »
Keith Jackson never called NFL games for CBS. However in the credits he is listed as "Football Announcer", not as himself, so this is not necessarily a mistake. See more »
[as Mother Hinkle weeps over him]
I'll be all right, Mother.
Sure he will. Every week you read in Time Magazine how they're transplanting kidneys and making new spines out of fiberglass. Don't you think the doctors read that stuff, too?
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There are some lagging gaps in the film, but overall this is a delightfully written comedy, with clever ideas, good jokes and colourful supporting characters. Walter Matthau won an Oscar for his flamboyant role in the film, and he has a number of good moments, although Jack Lemmon also shines, bringing in his usual charm to every scene. The film is divided into a number of different chapters, and set to some wonderful music, giving it a vibrant feel. And, above all its other virtues, the film manages to say some things about greed and the consequences of lying. It is not a large flashy production, and it may not be a perfect film, but I found it quite charming and it comes recommended, especially to fans of Wilder's comedies.
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