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A mother drops her son and husband off at a tropical vacation spot for a little rest and relaxation. The only problem is that the husband has been dead for quite some time, and his wife had him stuffed and carries him around with her. Complications ensue.Written by
I've seen the film AND read the play, which I think makes me unique. It also makes me queasy. The word `queasy' is not a staple of my vocabulary, for some reason, but it leapt readily to mind as a precise description of how this miserable, grotty-looking, dull, funny-as-chloroform movie made me feel, and will make you feel, too, if you're not careful. The play was little more than a foray into a now extinct breed of artiness. I wouldn't be surprised to learn that it has never been produced anywhere in the world since 1970 - and hopefully, the sun will grow cold before it is produced anywhere ever again. The film is a botched version of the play, AND a foray into extinct artiness in its own right. Moreover I think something was wrong with the film stock. The very colours upset my stomach.
Here is what remains of the plot synopsis, excluding that which has been so wittily summed up by the title: a widow has had her dead husband stuffed; she lugs his preserved corpse around wherever she travels; she has an idiot son who is sort of undergoing a sexual awakening (DON'T expect anything salacious); and that's about it. Every so often the dead father will appear in a little bubble in the top right-hand corner of the screen and comment on what, if anything, is going on. Sometimes he'll talk to his son. Sometimes he'll address the audience, with lines like, `Not much will happen in the next few minutes.' If he'd been honest, he would have added, `And not much will happen after that, either, so if you're thinking of walking out, cut your losses and do so NOW.'
Don't get me wrong - the 1960s was the tail end of Hollywood's golden age, producing delightful throw-backs like **** and stunning new masterpieces like ****. (I'm sorry - I simply couldn't bear to see the names of two of my favourite films associated in any way with this one.) But it was also the Decade of Floundering. If you want to see just how badly Hollywood was floundering in the 'sixties, by all means watch this movie - but you'll probably decide that you didn't really want to know, after all.
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