Before thousands of enthusiastic spectators at the World Cup semi-finals between France and China, an elusive professional assassin murders the famous French coach, and manages, somehow, to steal from his hand his prized possession--the priceless Pink Panther diamond ring. Now, of all the Parisian Police Force's detectives, the deceitful Chief Inspector, Dreyfus, decides to appoint the maladroit investigator, Jacques Clouseau, to this difficult and mysterious case, knowing that the eccentric gendarme is way out of his depth. Does Dreyfus have a hidden agenda? Can France's clueless and most bumbling officer of the law piece together the scarce leads to pull off a surprising success?Written by
In the press conference scene, the cameras that are supposed to be "news" cameras actually filmed parts of the scene. See more »
When Clouseau is playing "good cop/bad cop," he offers cigarettes to the prisoner, which he declines. Clouseau puts them on the desk, where they promptly disappear from the remainder of the scene. See more »
Chief Inspector Dreyfus:
Ah. Clouseau. Yes, well, the first time I ever heard that name... Clouseau was just a little nobody. A police officer in some little village far outside of Paris. He was the village idiot as far as I could tell.
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The opening credits feature the Pink Panther being pursued by, and in turn harassing, an animated Inspector Clouseau (who now resembles Steve Martin). The credits are directed by Bob Kurtz, who had worked on some of the "Pink Panther" shorts. See more »
An alternate opening sequence, made in CGI. See more »
This movie unfolds slowly & tentatively, but picks up speed as it progresses...or maybe I was just too concerned with Steve Martin's interpretation of Inspector Clouseau, and I finally relaxed about halfway through the film. Well, when you're used to seeing Peter Sellers as Clouseau, it's just difficult to view anyone else in that role. But, true to the character, Steve Martin does make it his own, and actually pulls it off pretty effectively. He has always been good with physical humor, and this film is no exception.
Similarly, its difficult to adjust to seeing Kevin Kline as Inspector Dreyfus. Since this movie is a prequel, I can assume that Clouseau has yet to get completely under his skin. It was typical Kevin Kline ... dry, with a weak french accent. I was mildly disappointed because I really enjoyed his french character & accent in French Kiss several years ago.
The first few gags were very short-sided and fell flat, but once Clouseau starts looking for clues the slapstick works a little better & the film gets more enjoyable. Many of the gags are predictable (as is the plot), but what really makes them work is Martin's reactions (which I really think was the key to Peter Seller's portrayal as well).
This film was very tame, with only subtle innuendoes that most youngsters aren't likely to grasp. The audience appeared to laugh at least as much as I did. If you don't expect too much, this movie will be fun; if you expect too much, you're likely to be disappointed.
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