“Try to look reasonably happy. After all, it isn’t every day that a German spy is awarded the French Legion of Honor.”
During World War I, when a German spy (Julie Andrews) posing as a dance hall singer falls for an allied pilot (Rock Hudson), she puts herself and others at risk.
Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:
- Blake Edwards Films
- Historical Drama
- Julie Andrews Films
- Niall MacGinnis Films
- Rock Hudson Films
- World War I
Julie Andrews gamely tries her best in this colorful period-piece smash-up (directed by Blake Edwards) of a Mata Hari-like German spy/singer who allows her objectivity to be foiled by her romantic attraction to Hudson’s studly fighter pilot, and is followed by bumbling inspectors who appear to belong in a Pink Panther flick. In his scathing but telling review, DVD Savant notes that the “problem is a fundamentally inconsistent character in a dumb story, and a Hollywood system that thought it could make a foolproof attraction just by throwing millions into a picture with Julie Andrews on the marquee.” The best elements of this costly bomb are the colorful cinematography (though be forewarned, as Savant notes, that “Many scenes are long-lens coverage of people walking along rivers or luxuriating in beds, until the camera racks focus to reveal a giant flower in the foreground.”) and period sets.
Redeeming Qualities and Moments:
- Fine period detail
- Effective cinematography
No; you can skip this one unless you’re a Julie Andrews completist.