• Made by the former cartoonist Frank Tashlin who directed many comedies (Bob Hope and Jerry Lewis vehicles) during the 1950s and 1960s. He was admired by the French New Wave—specifically Godard.
  • Color by DeLuxe, nice use of the CinemaScope wider frame. But the color influence on Godard isn’t Tashlin (like many misappropriate)- it is Nicolas Ray.
  • The story is about celebrity, lampooning Hollywood, the media, and especially the television generation and the advertising industry as a whole. Indeed, a softer critique of the post-WWII so-called American Dream than say The Sweet Smell of Success (also 1957).

It opens with Tony Randall pretending to play the 20th Century Fox theme music diegetically on the screen. You can see this having an impression on Godard as Tashlin exposes (not nearly in the same biting way as Godard) the façade a little. Randall snaps his fingers for the credits, forgets the title of the film (which is a joke itself, an awful title, and proof it doesn’t take itself too seriously), he talks about Jayne Mansfield’s figure.

  • After the inventive title sequence, the film moves to  Randall’s voice-over that the film (and Tashlin) forgets about
  • Again, this is a critique of the American dream of wealth- the grey flannel suits, Madison Avenue, olive martins, private executive washrooms (a great recurring joke here with a choir vocalizing every time it is discussed).
  • Mansfield plays Rita Marlowe (superb name)- often in revealing clothing of course, a platinum blonde. She has a poodle with her that always matches- she plays a celebrity (she is just playing herself really—or her public persona- which is a riff on Marilyn Monroe). The comment on celebrity sort of precedes La Dolce Vita by a few years (1960).
  • The costume work deserves recognition- this is Charles Le Maire. He has 230 credits, 13 noms, 3 wins and worked on films like All About Eve and How to Marry a Millionaire.
  • A great shot where Randall walks right over the camera (outside the Knickerbocker Hotel) in a stupor after he gets a kiss from Mansfield’s character.
  • The story breezes along- montages, charm.
  • Randall is a poor man’s Jack Lemmon—a sort of empathetic, comic, weakling or loser. Randall’s finest moment is either this or support in Pillow Talk– but certainly it is interesting to see this film as the market correction for Marilyn Monroe and Jack Lemmon (who hadn’t teamed up yet actually- Some Like it Hot was 1959).
  • I do love some of the playfulness with form- Tashlin pauses (via Randall- but not voice-over) the film at the 68-minute mark for an intermission. He patronizingly does this for “television audiences” who are used to commercials and a tiny, often blurry, screen- haha.

Colored spotlights behind the couple at the 82-minute mark—Tashlin does not keep this up throughout the film (the form is just messy) but he’ll fade to yellow soon after. Later he fades to blue after the phallic/Freudian pipe scene at the 90-minute mark.

One of the best stand-alone frames is silhouette shot behind the blue screen at the 92-minute mark

  • Adore the cameo by Groucho Marx
  • Recommend / Highly Recommend border