HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
You've Been Trumped Too
Woman in Black, The
Elvis: That's the Way It Is
Man Who Laughs, The
Watch List
Giraffe
Kat and the Band
Echo
Perfect 10
Octaman
Red Penguins
China Syndrome, The
Babyteeth
Round-Up, The
Around the Sun
Once There Was Brasilia
Peripheral
Dead Pigeon on Beethoven Street
Ice
She Demons
Good Girls, The
Hail, Hero!
Faces in the Crowd
Tamango
Traitor, The
Tomorrow
Third Generation, The
Saxon Charm, The
Spy Intervention
Moonrise
Mulan
Killer with a Thousand Eyes, The
Vigil, The
Liberation of L.B. Jones, The
Wizard of Baghdad, The
Ride
Good Manners
Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo
Sweet Home
Big Score, The
   
 
Newest Articles
What Use is Grief to a Horse? Equus on Blu-ray
For God's Sake Strap Yourselves Down: Flash Gordon on 4K UHD Collector's Edition
Party Hard: Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights in with ABC 2 - Your Faces are All Blurred!
Eve Knew Her Apples: The Lady Eve on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Tempo - Gallery One
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 1 - Welcome Once Again to Manchester!
Transformative Apocalypses: Phase IV and Southland Tales
The Happiest Days of Their Lives: The Guinea Pig on Blu-ray
Faced Poe: Three Edgar Allan Poe Adaptations Starring Bela Lugosi on Blu-ray
Hard Luck, Buster: The Cameraman on Blu-ray
At the Hop: Mr. Vampire on Blu-ray
Divine Madness: Female Trouble on Blu-ray
Country Matters: Further Out of Town on Blu-ray
Bat-Damn: Was Joel Schumacher's Batman Really That Bad?
The Beat Goes On: Takeshi Kitano Collection on Blu-ray
Dream Treats: Scorsese Shorts on Blu-ray
It's Only Money: Laughter in Paradise on Blu-ray
A Regular Terpsichore: Dance, Girl, Dance on Blu-ray
Teenage Trauma: Baby Love on Blu-ray
The Happening: Pet Shop Boys It Couldn't Happen Here on Blu-ray
Who Watched The Watchmen?
The Golden Age of Colonic Irrigation: Monty Python Series 4 on Blu-ray
Lady of Pleasure: Lola Montes on Blu-ray
Take You to the Gay Bar: Funeral Parade of Roses on Blu-ray
   
 
  Hanky Panky A Slight Hitch
Year: 1982
Director: Sidney Poitier
Stars: Gene Wilder, Gilda Radner, Kathleen Quinlan, Richard Widmark, Robert Prosky, Josef Sommer, Johnny Sekka, Jay O. Sanders, Sam Gray, Larry Bryggman, Pat Corley, Johnny Brown, Bill Beutel, Nat Habib, James Tolkan, Frankie Faison, Victor Argo, William Sadler
Genre: Comedy, ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: A man wakes up in bed, focuses his eyes and sees the painting he has created on the opposite wall, something only he knows the meaning of. He then groggily gets up, walks out the room, out of the house and into the barn where he promptly climbs a ladder to the upper floor and hangs himself. But what does this have to do with Janet Dunn (Kathleen Quinlan), who is desperately trying to contact government man Hiram Calder (Robert Prosky) at his club in New York? She is foiled when he is poisoned just as she almost hands over a package to him, then flees the scene...

Straight into the cab of Michael Jordon, played by Gene Wilder in what would have been another comedy thriller teaming him with Richard Pryor after the success of Silver Streak and Stir Crazy, but for reasons not made public, though you can hazard a guess, Pryor bowed out of the film and Saturday Night Live comedienne Gilda Radner was drafted in to replace him, necessitating a rewrite of the script. Although watching it you can tell perhaps they didn't rewrite it quite as much as they should have, as Radner was landed a poorly conceived and practically unplayable part for a performer more used to the style of sketch comedy that had made her name.

Still, she did her best, and one thing she would be thankful for would be meeting Wilder, for she fell in love with him and made sure the feeling was mutual by the time filming was over; they had a few happy years, a couple more films, but Gilda wasn't long for the world and died after five years of marriage. Therefore Hanky Panky can be a poignant experience to watch with that in mind, but mostly what you'll be thinking was that Alfred Hitchcock would have done better with this material, for this was an attempt by director Sidney Poitier (who had helmed Stir Crazy) to latch onto the subgenre of Hitchcockian comedy thrillers patterned after North by Northwest, something which went as far back as The Prize in the early sixties.

When this example was released, it wasn't offered the best reception, flopping at the box office and with seemingly every critic in the world putting the boot in, but it really wasn't so bad, it's just that it had a lot to live up to. Radner didn't appear till half an hour in, leaving a too-frequently yelling Wilder to carry the plot as Michael helps out Janet by posting the package for her, but is then tailed by some heavies who bring him to a subway location and inject him with truth serum so he tells all he knows, which can't be very much. Then the chief baddie (ex-Poitier co-star Richard Widmark) orders Michael dead in a fake suicide, and as the serum wears off, he manages to get away and track down Janet, hoping to clear up what exactly is going on.

Although even by the end that's not entirely obvious to the audience, never mind Michael, as the plot contrives to throw up characters and twists with wild abandon with nary a thought to how much this was meant to make sense (or otherwise). So you actually had a convoluted narrative coasting on the charm of its stars as Michael goes on the run with Radner's Kate Hellman, a woman who happened to walk into the apartment of his friend which he was using, and unusually keen on helping him out. This leads to a cross country chase, although we don't get much of the cross country part, ending up in the Grand Canyon for the bit everyone remembers, the flight over that landmark in the plane where the burping pilot has a heart attack and Michael has to crash land the vehicle, though it's a mark of the movie's woolly-headedness that it's never explained whether this was a case of sabotage or not. With its eighties inclusion of computers as the MacGuffin, Hanky Panky passes muster as nostalgia these days, but it was a ramshackle affair for a big studio. Music by Tom Scott.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1935 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Sidney Poitier  (1927 - )

Confident, handsome and iconic, this American-born leading actor first made an impression in the 1950s in films such as The Blackboard Jungle, Edge of the City, The Defiant Ones (which he spent chained to Tony Curtis) and Porgy and Bess. By the sixties he was a star, appearing in A Raisin in the Sun, Lillies of the Field (for which he won an Oscar, the first black actor to do so in a leading role), The Long Ships, The Bedford Incident, To Sir With Love, racially themed thriller In the Heat of the Night and racially themed comedy Guess Who's Coming To Dinner.

By the seventies, Poitier had turned to directing, usually light comedies, with western Buck and the Preacher, Uptown Saturday Night and its sequel Let's Do It Again, A Piece of the Action, Stir Crazy, Hanky Panky, musical Fast Forward and Bill Cosby vehicle Ghost Dad. He then concentrated on acting once more, with appearances in Shoot To Kill, Little Nikita, Sneakers and The Jackal.

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Paul Smith
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
  Lee Fiveash
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
   

 

Last Updated: