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George Roy Hill
Madolyn Smith Osborne,
When, unbeknownst to Gloria, a microfilm cassette is left with her by a dying agent, she becomes entangled in a complicated series of events. She's pursued by a dwarf and an albino, and becomes convinced that they are out to kill her. Finally, with the help of San Francisco detective Tony Carlson, she begins to turn the tables on her pursuers. It becomes clear that the nerfarious crew after her are plotting a dastardly deed indeed - to assassinate the Pope as he visits the city to see _The Mikado_. Gloria and Tony must race against time to prevent this terrible crime. Written by
Rick Munoz <email@example.com>
"The bad guys are after your ass. It's my job to get there first."
Perky librarian Gloria Mundy (Hawn) has stumbled on to a plot to assassinate the pope. Now she has an albino, a dwarf and a scarfaced killer "after her ass." She turns to Det. Tony Carlson (Chase) and together they crack the case. The plot, including the obligatory car chase through the streets of San Francisco, is totally by the numbers, but this movie has a lot of minor delights. Witty dialog and a brilliant supporting cast help a lot. As for the leads, Hawn was in her prime. Even in the bad seventies makeup, hairdos and clothes she is adorable. Chevy Chase doesn't have a lot to do, as the script gives most of the heroic moments to Hawn. Even so, he turns out to be quite a charmer. I'd forgotten that, back when he was young and handsome, his bumbling schtick actually worked. The best part of seeing Foul Play now is spotting the multitude of 70's anachronisms. Just a few that stand out: Gloria thinks nothing of picking up a hitchhiker. She's a non-smoker but lets someone light up in her car. Chevy Chase's character, a police detective, smokes a joint now and then. Ah, those were the days. If this movie appeals to you, I would strongly suggest "Silver Streak" (1976), another comedy/romance/thriller also written by Colin Higgins. These two films share a similar sensibility, and I'd love to see them at a revival house as a double feature.
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