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The Pink Panther (1963)
A Fantastically Funny Film, But One of the Worst Endings Ever
First off do not get me wrong I greatly enjoyed this film, it was beautifully written (mostly) and directed and of course Peter Sellers is absolutely fantastic as Inspector Clouseau as are the rest of the cast in their respective roles. However, the ending is completely unjust. And for me while I can love a movie, if I do not think the ending is justified and understandable then I will disapprove of the movie. Such is the case this time.
I must state this first off, when I watch a film or read a book where 'the bad guys', 'deserve to win' by some creatively genius planning or highly thought-out intellectually reasoning, then kudos to them and congratulations. However, this movie is entirely different.
The ONLY decent character in the film is the one to be punished. Inspector Clouseau loves his wife and by her words "has many redeeming qualities", he is, "Kind, loyal, obedient, faithful." Yet in the end he is the one to suffer and face jail. The other main characters are deceitful, manipulative, untrustworthy and well...just downright evil. Particularly as the two main women (one of course being the honourable Inspector's wife) conspires to Clouseau's downfall. Yes he is bumbling, foolish and an idiot, but he has good values and ethics as he only attempts to achieve his goal and job.
However, this movie suggests that these are undesirable qualities as Clouseau is the one who ends up the worst of all the characters. Although, as is stated in the final scene - women will be all over him when he gets out in just a few short years. I am sorry, but being a male 'just a few short years of jail' would be too much for me, no matter how many women throw themselves at me after I get out.
The movie while excellent for 95 percent of its duration fails to win me over in the final few minutes and this is where I begin to dislike it. I have never watched a movie that has gone from an 7 or 8 out of 10 to a 2 or 3 out of 10 so quickly. What this movie suggests is that being sneaky, underhanded, deceitful, devious, sly and indeed Machiavellian are ways that people should act to get ahead in life. Whilst, hard working, honest, truthful, faithful, compassionate and even those who love will end you up in jail. Whether or not this is the intention of the film makers it should be deplored.
Whilst it may be considered a great film and hilariously funny, the means can not justify the ends. However, this should not discourage anyone from watching this film which contains one the finest film comedic performances of all time.
P.S. I could of course be accused of over analysing the film and taking it too seriously, when it should be enjoyed light heartedly and with good humour. Yet the ending still ruins it for me, no matter what angle I attempt to take it from.