849. A Fish Called Wanda

Title: A Fish Called Wanda
Director: Charles Crichton
Year: 1988
Run time: 1hr 48m

“Four career cons just committed the crime of the century. But when a double-cross leaves their loot in limbo, it’s up to one American temptress (Jamie Lee Curtis) to convince one English lawyer (John Cleese) to reveal its location. Monty Python veteran John Cleese co-wrote and co-stars in this hilarious tale of lust, sex, murder and seafood, which won an Academy Award for Kevin Kline for his performance as an unhinged hitman. Also starring Python veteran Michael Palin, A Fish Called Wanda is “a deliciously dishy comedy” (Washington Post).”

Live blog

1:52 – Love a fish tank, but don’t want to have to maintain one.
4:56 – “It’s absolutely vital and it won’t cost much.” I’m using that in future.
11:30 – I do like the spaces under railway arches, but they’re always so grungy.
12:56 – John Cleese predicted the Hatton Garden Heist?
14:56 – “DISAPPOINTED!”
19:14 – Are there many famous barristers?
24:10 – That is clever to hide it in the fish tank.
25:45 – “You’re smart, you’ve got wonderful bones, great eyes and you dress really interestingly.”
27:31 – She really only has one weapon.
36:29 – No toenails in bed, never ever.
41:50 – He was legit sat like that? If I crossed my legs in the car, I’d be stuck like that forever.
47:59 – Haha, the scream at seeing his wife. And his face!
48:39 – Harvey Manfrengensendon.
48:55 – John Cleese does baffled really well.
58:07 – “Do you have any idea what it’s like to be English?” How would she?
1:05:25 – The London Underground, a political movement. Interesting.
1:16:56 – Otto literally turns up at exactly the wrong moment every single time.
1:24:39 – Oh my god, the eating of the fish is so disgusting.
1:32:58 – “Everybody does it in America,” she says, as if that’s an excuse.
1:38:33 – Michael Palin as luggage is hilarious.
1:39:19 – Baby Stephen Fry!
1:43:57 – Slowest revenge scene ever.

Conclusions

Not quite sure how we landed on this one, but a bit of John Cleese always goes down well. I thought the movie started off really slowly, it took a long time to set the scene and get everything going, and to be honest there wasn’t much comedy until Cleese showed up.

Once he did, though, then it picked up and I started enjoying it. Thought it was quite like Monty Python itself, some of the jokes are sheer genius, some of it you’re left wondering ‘what on earth’? Some of Cleese’s physical comedy was great, and I loved the steamroller bit, so Austin Powers. Kline was terrifying, Jamie Lee great (although she was the smart one of the group, I’d have liked her not to have to use her body quite so much).

Nevertheless, fun film when it got going.

Rating: 3/5.