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I still remember seeing this movie, way back in 1976, at the Fortway theater in Brooklyn, NY. It was a second run theater that showed double features, usually movies that were originally released 6 months earlier, for only $2.00 (ahh those were the days). Lucky Lady played on a double bill with Sky Riders, which starred James Coburn, Susannah York and Robert Culp. I was around 13 at the time, and had a little idea of what Sky Riders was about, no idea of the story to Lucky Lady, though I know it received poor reviews. I have to admit I enjoyed them both, but had a grand time watching Lucky Lady. It seemed a bit episodic, and the humor at times was kinda dumb, but I got to like the characters, even the minor ones like Robbie Benson as their "first mate," Michael Hordern as the old captain, and even Geoffrey Lewis as the zealous but loony Coast Guard captain out to sink any bootleggers he comes across. But the villains really stole the show, especially John Hillerman as the machine-gun toting main villain.
One complaint was that the final boat battle was a rip-off of the James Bond battles. Who cares, as long as it's done well--in fact Mr. Donen should have been approached to do some of the Bonds after this movie.
I may have seen the movie on tv shortly after its release. I don't remember if i liked it as much, seeing it on tv wasn't quite the same. I don't know if I would like it as much now either, but I would certainly be interested in seeing it on video. As another person commented, so much dreck is being released on DVD, I don't see why Lucky Lady shouldn't be made available. At least it tried to be a class act, which is more than you can say for many of today's releases.
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