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What? (1972)
"Che?" (original title)

X  |   |  Comedy  |  3 October 1973 (USA)
5.9
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Ratings: 5.9/10 from 2,253 users  
Reviews: 19 user | 21 critic

A young American woman (Sydne Rome) traveling through Italy finds herself in a strange Mediterranean villa where nothing seems right. Her visit becomes an absurd, decadent, oversexed ... See full summary »

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Title: What? (1972)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Alex
Sydne Rome ...
Nancy
...
Joseph Noblart
Guido Alberti ...
Priest
Gianfranco Piacentini ...
Tony
Carlo Delle Piane ...
Young Oaf #1 in Car
Mario Bussolino ...
Young Oaf #2 in Car
Henning Schlüter ...
Catone
Christiane Barry ...
Dresser
Pietro Tordi ...
Man-Servant
Nerina Montagnani ...
Chambermaid
Mogens von Gadow ...
German
...
German
Elisabeth Witte ...
Nurse
John Karlsen ...
Edward
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Storyline

A young American woman (Sydne Rome) traveling through Italy finds herself in a strange Mediterranean villa where nothing seems right. Her visit becomes an absurd, decadent, oversexed version of "Alice in Wonderland", with Marcello Mastroianni as the maddest of mad hatters and Roman Polanski a kinky March hare. Written by Dan Navarro <daneldorado@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The kinkiest caper of the year!

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

X | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

| |

Language:

| |

Release Date:

3 October 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Diary of Forbidden Dreams  »

Box Office

Gross:

SEK 630,831 (Sweden)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When producer Robert Evans was trying to coax Roman Polanski to direct Chinatown (1974), he found Polanski thoroughly absorbed with this film, to the extent that he had bought a 50% share in it. Evans eventually lured Polanski by saying that whatever "What" made in its opening week, he would pay him as his salary for directing "Chinatown". Polanski readily agreed to this, expecting "What" to do well as he considered it the best thing he had done up to that point. Unluckily for Polanski, "What" only grossed $64 on its first week. See more »

Goofs

Nancy's hands are well manicured throughout the movie, but quite ordinary during close-ups, when she's supposedly playing the piano. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Sydne in Wonderland (2008) See more »

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User Reviews

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24 August 2006 | by (Illinois, USA) – See all my reviews

Sydney Rome is an American traveling in Italy who flees to a private villa after being attacked by some really inept rapists. Within the estate she meets a bunch of crazy people, including former pimp Marcello Mastroianni in what has to be the craziest, most outlandishly go-for-broke performance of his career. Comparisons to Alice in Wonderland (always mentioned in conjunction with this film) are a huge stretch, I think. There's an innocent girl in a strange place surrounded by crazy people, but that's about the extent of the parallels. At best it's like Lewis Carroll reinterpreted by a horny high schooler who still giggles when he hears the word "breast." Nevertheless, for the first half hour or so I thought this was one of the funniest movies I had ever seen. Unfortunately it climaxed with Mastroianni crawling around in a tiger hide making meowing noises (whereupon Rome starts "taming" him with the whip). After that the film never really recovers the energy it started out with and viewers are left with little to do but wonder how Rome will be humiliated next (first her shirt is ripped, then stolen, then she walks around wearing a napkin until she finds another shirt, but then her pants are stolen, finally she loses the shirt, etc). I love unadulterated nonsense (SCHIZOPOLIS, FORBIDDEN ZONE, THE BED SITTING ROOM) but aside from a couple of choice moments this film's particular pointlessness was lazy and uninspired.


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