7.9/10
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119 user 62 critic

One, Two, Three (1961)

Not Rated | | Comedy | 18 December 1961 (West Germany)
In West Berlin during the Cold War, a Coca-Cola executive is given the task of taking care of his boss' socialite daughter.

Director:

Billy Wilder

Writers:

Billy Wilder (screenplay), I.A.L. Diamond (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Cagney ... C.R. MacNamara
Horst Buchholz ... Otto Ludwig Piffl
Pamela Tiffin ... Scarlett Hazeltine
Arlene Francis ... Phyllis MacNamara
Howard St. John ... Wendell P. Hazeltine
Hanns Lothar Hanns Lothar ... Schlemmer
Leon Askin ... Peripetchikoff
Ralf Wolter Ralf Wolter ... Borodenko
Karl Lieffen Karl Lieffen ... Fritz
Hubert von Meyerinck ... Count von Droste Schattenburg
Loïs Bolton Loïs Bolton ... Melanie Hazeltine (as Lois Bolton)
Peter Capell ... Mishkin
Til Kiwe Til Kiwe ... Reporter
Henning Schlüter Henning Schlüter ... Dr. Bauer
Karl Ludwig Lindt Karl Ludwig Lindt ... Zeidlitz
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Storyline

Berlin is the epitome of political and economic polarization. A microcosm of that polarization is the life of American C.R. MacNamara, known as Mac to his friends. He is Coca-Cola's head of West Berlin operations, although he feels he deserves to be Coca-Cola's head of European operations based in London. Mac's wife, Phyllis, wants him instead to get a steady and stable job back in head office in Atlanta. His West Berlin staff are all still used to treating him like their old master, the Fuhrer. The one exception is his secretary, Ingeborg, who is the latest in the long line of his secretary mistresses. And he's working on a trade agreement of getting Coca-Cola into the Russian market. His life goes into a tailspin when he hosts Scarlett Hazeltine in his home for two weeks. She is the seventeen year old spoiled and party-loving daughter of his Atlanta based boss, Wendell Hazeltine. Unlike most of the stops she's made on her European trip, Scarlett seems to like West Berlin and stays ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Billy Wilder's Explosive New Comedy

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German | Russian

Release Date:

18 December 1961 (West Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Uno, dos, tres See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$4,000,000, 31 December 1962
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (1962) (banned) | (Ontario)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

James Cagney had such a negative experience making this picture that he retired from films for 20 years until his cameo in Ragtime (1981). See more »

Goofs

In the scene with the three MPs, when one opens the door and says he wants to be taken away, the other soldier call him "Sarge" at least twice. However, the insignia on his sleeve shows he's a Specialist 5th Class, equal in pay grade but not addressed as a sergeant. The two soldiers with stripes (Corporals) would actually out rank the specialist who was not considered a Noncomissioned Officer. See more »

Quotes

Ingeborg: Here's your mail, here's your Wall Street Journal, and here's my resignation.
C.R. MacNamara: Resignation? What are you talking about?
Ingeborg: You do not work me overtime anymore, you do not take advantage of me on weekends, you have lost all interest in the... umlaut. So obviously, my services are no longer required here.
See more »

Connections

References La Dolce Vita (1960) See more »

Soundtracks

Ride of the Valkyries
(uncredited)
from Act III of "Die Walküre"
Music by Richard Wagner
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
One of The Ten Best Comedy Films Ever Made
15 November 2006 | by bbedgeSee all my reviews

If you're planning on screening "One, Two,Three" for the first time and you weren't alive in 1961, take a moment to acquaint yourself with the political climate of the time....then get ready to laugh A LOT ! I was 17 when "One, Two, Three" came out and all these years later I am still amazed at the majesty of this film. As most of you know, this was to be James Cagney's last picture, and it took a lot of convincing by Billy Wilder to get him to do it. Cagney did come back one more time for "Ragtime", but that doesn't lessen the greatness of this, his final starring role. I saw a comment posted about the film having the perfect cast and I agree, but it's not surprising when you consider this: name me a Billy Wilder film that didn't have the perfect cast ! William Holden and Gloria Swanson in "Sunset Blvd", Jack Lemmon and Shirley MacLaine in "The Apartment", Jack Lemmon, Tony Curtis and Marilyn Monroe in "Some Like It Hot", Jack Lemmon and..well, you get the picture: Billy Wilder knew precisely who he wanted for every part and usually got them, and if he had to go with choice # 2, then choice # 2 was one lucky actor. And each supporting role, no matter how small, got the same Wilder treatment. I know because my dad was the TV Movie Host in "The Apartment". Actors knew that being in a Billy Wilder film meant the script would be first rate and the director would get a first rate performance out of them, even if it took all night. Pamela Tiffin was just terrific in this film, but sadly she never got another role worthy of her ability. The same goes for Horst Buchholz, "The Magnificent Seven" not withstanding. At least they got to do "One, Two, Three" and that might have just been enough. Right up there in the same league with "The Philadelphia Story", "Annie Hall" and the original version of "To Be Or Not To Be" starring Jack Benny and Carole Lombard, Billy Wilder's "One, Two, Three" is a forever film classic for all the reasons I and others have mentioned, and for one more which it shares with every great film: "One, Two, Three" assumes you have a brain and treats you accordingly. " SCHLEMMER !!!!!"


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