The Bobo Reviews
Well-written con job with surprising conclusion as Peter Sellers attempts to ingratiate himself to man-eating gold-digger Britt Ekland in order to secure an engagement as a singer at the most popular music hall in Barcelona. What nationality didn't that man take on?? His physical skills are kept to a minimum but that allows his deftly wry timing and mannerisms to shine more, and Ekland is great as a petulant, coquettish tease. (One look into those Swedish eyeballs and no wonder he married her in real life.)
Menacing Celi makes a wonderful adversary for Sellers, but is sadly underused. Meanwhile, the first act wastes a large chunk of time on an utterly pointless nebbish who's infatuated with Olimpia. There is no reason for his character to exist, and he is whisked out of the story long, long before the film is through. What producer owed the actor a favor? Other notable features include a strange ending that alienated many viewers (the lobby poster is a hint), two Sellers-sung ballads (nicely done) and an extended flamenco-dance solo that is viscerally disgusting in ways that mere words can't capture. Based on the dancer's sweaty, convulsed face, you would guess she was giving birth rather than cutting a rug. And the scene just goes on and on. I almost fast-forwarded.
If you want to see a bronze-skinned Sellers chasing a cute girl with a foreign accent, you're much better off renting "The Party."
Liked the ending though!