The Notorious Landlady [DVD] 
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Eminently versatile, two-time Oscar® winner Jack Lemmon (1973, Best Actor, Save the Tiger; 1955, Best Supporting Actor, Mister Roberts) was an actor’s actor – the sort who made it look easy as he lit up the screen in everything from powerful dramas to irresistible comedies. The Notorious Landlady is an engaging mix of larceny and laughs when an American diplomat and his alluring London landlady stumble into a caper filled with stolen jewels, murder and comedy mayhem!
Kim Novak, Jack Lemmon and Fred Astaire star in this wonderfully entertaining 1960s comedy mystery set in London. When young William Gridley (Jack Lemmon) arrives in London to start work under diplomat Franklyn Ambruster (Fred Astaire) he rents an apartment from the lovely Carly Hardwicke (Kim Novak)--unaware that the police suspect her of having poisoned her husband. When Carly’s missing husband mysteriously reappears…and then is murdered…a neighbour helps her escape a murder charge. But then the trouble really starts…
Directed by Richard Quine (Bell, Book and Candle) and with a witty, stylish script by Blake Edwards (The Pink Panther) and Larry Gelbart (M*A*S*H), The Notorious Landlady is a sparkling comedy with one of the funniest finales ever filmed.
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Top Customer Reviews
The film is a kind of comedy/mystery set in pre-Swinging Sixties London. Occasionally, the convoluted mystery gets in the way of the comedy but veteran director Richard Quine does his best to keep the proper balance. The script tends to be the weak link and I suspect there were more writers involved than the credited Larry Gelbart and Blake Edwards. In fact, I also suspect it was Edwards' contributions that produced the uneven nature of the script, especially the slapstick chase scene at the end which seems to belong to another film altogether.
Still, there is much to enjoy in The Notorious Landlady, especially for fans of Jack Lemmon and Kim Novak. It could have been better - it could have been a lot worse. I was quite glad to see it again after all these years and will probably be tempted to have another look at it from time to time.
One more thing: The DVD case says the film is in colour. It's not - it's in glorious black and white which suits the style and setting of the film.
But, in the case of Notorious Landlady, that was the case. Kim Novak is as beautiful, Jack Lemmon as funny and, even if the stars themselves expressed themselves puzzled as to the story, it just doesn't matter.
This is a superb film, for many years forgotten and its appearance on DVD is a pleasure.
A brilliant film.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A comedy set in England with this quartet of leads - Jack Lemmon, Kim Novak, Fred Astaire, Lionel Jeffries - a London cab full of great character actors, crisp and fully-toned... Read morePublished on 30 April 2013 by Mo Khan
two actors who bounce off each other. I think they enjoyed making this film. I certainly enjoyed watching it and will do so againPublished on 3 Feb. 2013 by verity
arrived in good time. cannot remark on content as this film is not my "cup of tea" however hubby is big Kim Novak fan so no problemPublished on 29 April 2012 by happy reader