Friday, September 25, 2009

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

Did you know that "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" (1968) was written by Ian Fleming and produced by Albert R. Broccoli? It's true! And you know what? It kind of feels like a Bond film. It's filmed in lavish locales all throughout Western Europe, there are tons of cool gadgets, the villain is a sadistic but incompetent madman, and Desmond Llewelyn is in it!

I was watching it with my sick daughter today, and those were my main observations. Also, Dick Van Dyke is an awesome dancer. Oh, and I had always assumed that Julie Andrews was the female lead. She wasn't. That role went to Sally Ann Howes, who had also replaced Julie Andrews on the Broadway version of "My Fair Lady." I don't know why Howes didn't have the same kind of career arc as Andrews -- she was quite lovely and had an amazing voice. But for some reason she ends up being the Costco Julie Andrews. It's just not fair.

Final thoughts on the film: It's absurdly long. Sixty minutes have already elapsed before the family even comes to own the car. And I could have done without the crude anti-Semitic stereotyping. Beyond that, a lovely film.

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