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The Inspector General  [DVD]
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Arrested for vagrancy in a strange town, Georgi (Danny Kaye) is then mistaken by the corrupt town officials as a passing Inspector General. Worried that he will reveal they have been pocketing tax money, they make a series of attempts on his life.
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In terms of content, the style is light and frothy, with the satirical nature of Gogol's play on which the movie is based is sweetened away almost in its entirety. Message filled farce has given way to Danny Kaye vehicle, often way over the top. That said, it does raise a smile with infectious humour. There are a few good lines.. "Oh, I love my family, but I'd give my six kids to get rid of my wife.", and the twisting of the original lyrics to a well known song.. "Drink to me only wi-ith thine eye-eyes / And I will drink with my nose!".
The Gypsy song is probably the highlight, as Kaye gets the crowd participation (zzzum - shtok shtok - hahaha ... watch the movie and you'll know what I am talking about..).
If you're a Danny Kaye fan then you'll likely enjoy, but if you don't care for his style this movie will certainly not win you over.
This DVD version is particularly poor, with a very poor transfer of the original Technicolor. I assume this is the common public domain Eastmancolor 16mm transfer, rather than the superior 35mm Technicolour print which seems rare to find. The sound is also weak and scratchy. Danny Kaye needs larger than life colour and sound to match his larger than life comedy, and I suggest that if you have not seen it before or even want to relive the highlights, wait a bit longer to see if they will finally release a restored remastered version which would do the material better justice.
It's more a safe and solid Kaye movie for the family to enjoy, rather than a high end classic like The Court Jester, but sometimes the high energy jinks of Kaye is all you need to lift the blues away. 7/10
I still very much enjoyed watching it, as I had seen it on television before two or three times. This one is filled with excellent jokes by that Court Jester (watch that one too!) Danny Kaye. Kaye is a tramp who finds himself mistaken for the Inspector General of the Czar of Russia, who, the local dignitaries assume, has travelled to their small town under cover. All kinds of misunderstandings and Kaye's evil former employer make the story run apace, especially if you consider the age of this film. Without revealing all the details, 2 things stand out. First, Kaye is continually being put into the clothes of the town's chief constable, even when he smears them with dirt, until the poor fellow is left with not much to wear himself. Second, Kaye solliloquies and bursts into song with three alternative selves: the Arrogant, the Elegant and the Smart. A technical marvel of film making at the time (like Jerry Mouse dancing with Gene Kelly) and a very funny scene.
Recommend for one who looking for a light-heart commedy with plenty of slapsticks though the picture quality is not quite satisfactory.
I watched this over Christmas whilst stuck in bed with Flu,cheered me up no end!!
Looking for more of his films to buy from Amazon.
The movie itself could get a five only for the "shtock-shtock" scene (Gypsy Drinking Song), but I have to start getting stiff with the subtitle/captions phenomenon.
So, one star goes out for the DVD company not bothering to include any subs or closed captions,
and one star goes out for Amazon not informing their customers about that on the product's page.
If you can cope with the absence of subs, by all means, buy this film, you will enjoy it.
If you can't, get "The Court Jester" instead. Same low price, same fun, including subs.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Danny Kaye is great and the music is wonderful! Please don't miss watching this classic!Published 5 months ago by Jennifer
A little dated but blimey, it goes back a long way. But Danny Kaye at his genius best, what a joy of a talent. Read morePublished 5 months ago by E. Hargreaves