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The Party (1968)

Theparty

“Birdie num num”

The Party is one hell of a funny film and one that director, Blake Edwards should be rightly proud of with its abundant (and hilarious) sight gags and a sparkling script adding the finishing sheen to a colouful, stylish vehicle for the comedic talents of a certain Peter Sellers.

‘The Pink Panther’ (1963) had of course, propelled Messrs Sellers and Edwards into the stratosphere and having worked together again on another Clouseau adventure, ‘A Shot In The Dark’ (1964), they embarked on this foray into unadulterated daftness.

Hrundi V Bakshi (Sellers) an incompetant film extra, fresh from fouling up his last movie, is erroneously invited to a swish Hollywood party. From the moment he arrives at the oppulant pad he causes chaos and as he moves from one excruciating situation to another, the party starts to unravel resulting in psychedelic pandemonium.

Laugh-out loud moments include the loss of one of his shoes in an ornamental indoor stream, a one-way conversation with a macaw and an incident with caviar and the shaking of hands (still kills me now!) 

You can in these enlightened times, if one so chooses, look back over decades of cinema and wince inwardly/shrug knowingly at the racial stereotyping so redolantly on display. I never really got on with his role as an Indian doctor in the Sellers/Loren film, ‘The Millionairess’(1960)…just not funny…..that this portrayal of another gentleman from India outshines his earlier role (at least in my eyes) either means he plays it sympathetically or I’ve got my un-PC head on…probably a mix of both.

The fabulous filmscore, composed by Henry Mancini (also of Pink Panther fame),  has rendered the resulting soundtrack LP a collectors item and works just right for this classic movie.

If you haven’t seen it…buy buy buy..and enjoy this trailer…

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