A mother drops her son and husband off at a tropical vacation spot for a little rest and relaxation. The only problem is that the husband has been dead for quite some time, and his wife had... See full summary »
Mrs. Emily Pollifax of New Jersey goes to the CIA to volunteer for spy duty, being in her own opinion, expendable now that the children are grown and she's widowed. And being just what the ... See full summary »
Leslie H. Martinson
A mother drops her son and husband off at a tropical vacation spot for a little rest and relaxation. The only problem is that the husband has been dead for quite some time, and his wife had him stuffed and carries him around with her. Complications ensue. Written by
This film was completed in 1965 but Paramount didn't release it until 1967. In the interim, the understandably nervous studio hired Jonathan Winters to appear in comic inserts shot long after the regular cast had dispersed and principal photography was over. See more »
Okay, so the sixties was the decade when lots of rules were broken and new frontiers were forged. Unfortunately, alot of this rule-breaking looks self-indulgent and stupid now. Take the case of OH DAD ..., which is based on a George(or is it William?)Kopit play. Not quite absurdist but definitely absurd, the story involves a woman who lugs her dead husband's corpse with her and her adult virgin son as they traverse various resorts. Rosalind Russell is the white-clad, pastel-wigged mother, Robert Morse the wimpy man-child, and Jonathan Winters is Poor Dad in the closet(also the narrator). Also on hand is Barbara Harris as a young nymphet--one of the few reasons to see the movie. I happen to like Harris, and her film roles are few and far between(FREAKY FRIDAY and FAMILY PLOT are probably her most readily available films), so I grabbed POOR DAD at a small independent video shop several years ago. Harris is a great comic actress, and although she is one of the good things about POOR DAD, it's not one of her better efforts.
Winter's character narrates and points out the plot points of this film as it goes along, almost to cue the audience how to react to the next scene. It's interesting to note that, despite all the big names, this movie tanked. Probably because nobody knew what the hell this movie was--Winters' wacky narration and the goofy flashbacks detailing his courtship and marriage of Russell (who parodies her Auntie Mame persona) stab at being comic in that manic 1960s way (think of the way the old Monkees TV show was shot), or some kind of weird symbolic representation of the spiritual bankruptcy of the collective American soul (nobody has a corpse in a closet strickly for shtick purposes). And THAT TITLE . . . a sure sign the film is a bomb. If you're a student of film and feel the need to survey the various kinds of films that were perpetrated during the sixties, you might want to give this one a try. Or maybe not
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