UNDERCOVER is an 88 minute almost musical set in Sydney's jazzy snazzy roaring twenties. The uniquely Australian underwear invention of the Berlei Bra and under corsetry of the time is lovingly and lavishly depicted in David Elfick's lush and amusing production. Unfortunately released during the home video boom of the 80s, UNDERCOVER did not find a audience...and worse still, the same film distributor also released UNDER FIRE, a spy thriller with Gene Hackman, and audiences did not know there was two films, thinking UNDERCOVER was a thriller. As a result this beautiful and frothy/light musical comedy quickly disappeared. Sadly, it was also cut from 105 mins to 88 mins shortening the delights and making a faster paced film that was on and off too fast. Directed by David Stevens (KANSAS,anyone?) and with a healthy budget all lovingly displayed in superb 20s style and with a huge cast of now very famous Aussie thesps: Barry Otto, Peter Phelps, Sandy Gore, Genevieve Picot (PROOF) etc, UNDERCOVER is from the same colourful Oz cinematic palette later lapped up world wide in STRICTLY BALLROOM (1992). UNDERCOVER was ahead of its time by ten years as audiences appreciated it's identical widescreen colour and spectacle in 90s films like MURIEL'S WEDDING and PRISCILLA, and later for MOULIN ROUGE. UNDERCOVER preceded them all and opened the door for this type of Oz frills and musical spills. Elfick also produced the Oz smash hit musical STAR STRUCK (1982) and the same zaniness and good natured musical there for all to see...just see the IMDb for the international raves from non Australian STARSTRUCK fans. Well, UNDERCOVER is the Thoroughly Modern Millie of Sydney in a swish new car and corset. If you can ever see it you will be wondering how this lovely funny film has stayed lost for so long. Now in 2005 it is available on a DVD for the long overdue discovery and fan base it deserves. But alas, not the longer version. In widescreen it is a light and lovely experience, like the lavish underwear it depicts.
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