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To prove that he still is strong and powerful, Philippe Douvier decides to kill Chief Inspector Jacques Clouseau. Once Clouseau's death has been announced, the former Chief Inspector, Charles Dreyfus, feels much, much better and is released from the mental hospital. Jacques Clouseau tries to take advantage of his "death" and goes under cover with Cato to find out who tried to assassinate him. Written by
Lars J. Aas <email@example.com>
Peter Sellers returns as Chief Inspector Clouseau in this fifth and final installment of the `Pink Panther' series, in `Revenge Of The Pink Panther,' directed by Blake Edwards. This time around, Clouseau becomes the target of a drug lord, Douvier (Robert Webber), who finds it necessary to prove to colleagues that he is still `strong.' When the assassination attempt is summarily pronounced successful, it affords Clouseau the edge of pursuing the criminals through the use of disguise and the deft application of stealth as only Clouseau could effect. Meanwhile, former Chief Inspector Dreyfus (Herbert Lom) is pronounced fit, and returned to his position at the department. And, as would be expected, it all adds up to a bad time for the criminals, as well as the hapless Dreyfus. Edwards does a good job with this film, though it's not on a par with the previous outing, `The Pink Panther Strikes Again,' which was arguably the best (and funniest) of the series. There are scenes involving behind-closed-door meetings of the criminal element that seem to bog things down a bit, but with Sellers on hand they seem almost insignificant, for as soon as Clouseau arrives on the scene they're up and running once again. And Sellers has some classic moments in this one: Trying on new disguises at the establishment of Dr. Auguste Balls (Graham Stark), a veritable haberdashery for undercover surveillance; posing as a rotund `Godfather' and insinuating himself into the mob; and a foray as a peg-legged pirate with an inflatable parrot on his shoulder. The story line in this one may be considered thin-- Edwards gives it just enough to serve as a setting in which to showcase the talents of his star-- but there's nothing wrong with that; it's funny stuff, and watching Sellers work is worth the price of a ticket alone. One of the most memorable moments in the film, however, is courtesy of Herbert Lom, as Dreyfus gives the eulogy for the `late' Chief Inspector Clouseau and can barely contain his mirth, with his tears of joy construed, of course, as grief. And for the first time in the series, Clouseau's faithful manservant, Cato (Burt Kwouk) accompanies the Inspector during his investigation, which adds to the merriment, but is not necessarily a boon to getting the case, as Clouseau would say, `solv-ed.' The supporting cast includes Dyan Cannon (Simone Legree), Robert Loggia (Marchione), Tony Beckley (Algo), Andre Maranne (Francois), Charles Augins (Vic) and Douglas Wilmer (Police Commissioner). With "Revenge Of The Pink Panther,' Edwards delivers an above average comedy that is good for a lot of laughs, and he finishes it off with an extended, slapstick finale that really gives some sock to the overall movie. What will stay with you forever, however, is the image of Clouseau, and recalling his antics will provide you with some chuckles for a long time afterwards. In the end, this film stands a tribute to the great Peter Sellers, as proof positive that NOBODY does it better. I rate this one 8/10.
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