Semi-autobiographical tale from the early life of director Franco Zeffirelli looks at the illegitimate son of an Italian businessman. The boy's mother has died, and he is raised by an ... See full summary »
Late in World War II, the Brits still want their hands on a German Enigma, the typewriter-like machine that constructs and sends coded messages. Parachuting behind enemy lines - with two days to find the factory where Enigmas are made, grab one, and get out - are an unlikely quartet: a queen, a pencil pusher, a bookworm, and an almost secret agent. Plus they are all dressed as women, with only a crash course from the queen. They reach their destination, rendezvous with their German contact, a lovely librarian, and start their search. They seemed doomed to fail; is this a fool's errand? Written by
In this film, comedian Eddie Izzard plays an English soldier who cross-dresses. Eddie is a transvestite himself, and one of his stand-up routines (concerning transvestites in the armed forces) goes, "The main element of attack is the element of surprise. So what could be more surprising than the first battalion transvestite brigade?" (See Eddie Izzard: Dress to Kill (1999)). See more »
Nicolette Krebitz tells Matt LeBlanc that she got him a long-sleeved dress because "German women don't shave their underarms" (and Matt had shaved). However, she introduces Matt as an Italian, not a German. See more »
Well, actually, I'm a bisexual lesbian in a man's body... but it's more complicated than that.
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I've been an Eddie Izzard fan for quite a long time (As has the friend I watched this film with) and we approached it from that stand point. In fact as we picked it we couldn't help but recite "it's the 131st transvestite brigade, parachuting behind enemy line with fabulous make-up and a fabulous gun." Taking it as that style of campy send up of war we found it rather funny, of course it was cheesy and full of plot holes, but that was part of the appeal. "I have to get my mousy-kins!" I mean if this film wasn't laughing at itself it should have been. Yes Eddie turns in a brilliant performance from an emotional stand point as well, as does David Birkin, but their performances add to the humour not over shadow it. Yes from the stand point of making the world a better place this film did not accomplish a single blow for understanding, but not everything has to be a statement for the cause. Some things are allowed to be funny for humour's sake, and those of us who get that the stereotypically wooden characters are there to make a point find them all the more funny. Give it a try.
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