Don't Drink the Water (1969)
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as Walter Hollander
as Marion Hollander
as Axel Magee
as Susan Hollander
as Ambassador Magee
as Fr. Drobney
as Airline Clerk
as Organ Grinder
as Getaway Pilot
as Axel Magee
Critic Reviews for Don't Drink the Water
Audience Reviews for Don't Drink the Water
Don't Drink the Water was Woody Allen's first play. It had a successful run on Broadway and has enjoyed a long history in community theaters and high schools ever since. Allen didn't have much to do with this movie version, which was released in 1969; his involvement probably inspired the name of the movie Allen made that same year - Take the Money and Run. The movie version is directed with a plodding pace by Howard Morris, the brilliant comic actor whose directing work has been limited to sitcoms ever since; this was his last feature. There are a lot of fine character actors in this movie, all pretty much misused. I remember enjoying this movie when I was a kid, but I couldn't make it through this time around.
Standard vehicle for Jackie Gleason to display his obnoxious loudmouthed character. Estelle Parsons, Ted Bissell and Michael Constantine were good too. Some funny moments but too long and plot gets tiresome at some point.
Mildy funny comedy from the late 60s about a family that has their vacation completely upheaved when they are mistakenly thought to be spies when taking a family photo. The film is based on a play by Woody Allen, and I think the film would be funnier if the screenplay was written by him and if the movie was directed by Allen. The idea is very much an Allen idea, but the direction is that late 60s zaby comedy direction...like the kind of stuff made with the counterculture in mind but not made by anyone involved in the counterculture. Things like "Casino Royale", which also featured Allen. Allen isn't really involved being the writer of the original play. Jackie Gleason does a fine job in the lead, and I felt Estelle Parsons was pretty funny. I thought this was okay, but part of me knows it was lacking the flavor that made "Bananas" work so well.
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