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American critics don't know the swinging 60's scene and don't understand the humour, Absolutely superb. It is a camp piss take of the trendy and cliche ridden. This review will never be seen but who cares, it is a good film.
good campy fun along the lines of 1966's 'batman' or TV's 'the monkees'
British Secret Service chief Sir Gerald Tarrant (Harry Andrews) recruits spy Modesty Blaise (Monica Vitti) to protect a shipment of diamonds to a Middle Eastern sheik, Abu Tahir (Clive Revill). The shipment has also attracted Gabriel (Dirk Bogarde), the head of a diamond theft ring that includes his henchman McWhirter (Clive Revill) and Mrs. Fothergill (Rossella Falk). Modesty thinks that Gabriel, who maintains a compound in the Mediterranean, has died, but he reveals himself to her. In Amsterdam, Modesty reunites with her former lover, secret agent Paul Hagen (Michael Craig), while her partner, Willie Garvin (Terence Stamp), is reunited with an old flame, Nicole (Tina Aumont). Nicole is later killed by an assassin working for Gabriel. With Modesty and Willie on the run, they decide to steal the diamonds for themselves but Gabriel captures Modesty and forces Willie to steal the diamonds...
"Modesty Blaise" was released at the height of two cinematic trends: The popularity of James Bond had spawned a number of similarly themed films, and many of these films, rather than being serious spy adventures, were instead created as parodies of Bond and his genre. Director Joseph Losey and the screenwriters chose to follow the latter approach, by making Modesty Blaise a campy, sometimes surrealistic comedy-adventure. Modesty Blaise was a moderate success at the time of its original release, and today is generally considered a camp classic, although fans of the Modesty Blaise character remain divided on its merits. This movie was made and released about three years after the comic strip created by Peter O'Donnell (writer) and Jim Holdaway (artist) was first published in 1963. Being a fan of the comic strip, I didn´t like "Modesty Blaise" the first time I saw it and I didn´t really like it when re-seeing it. It´s simply too uneven, too campy, too psychedelic, too illogical and too far from the original character of Modesty Blaise. I can´t understand the idea of having Monica Vitti appear as the Modesty Blaise we know in an instant and then go back to the lavish 60´s model look and the same goes for Terence Stamp. The idea of lifting out the character from its comic strip universe and add her in some sort of psychedelic parallel universe and yet maintain the essence of the comic strip is as well mind boggling. How much acid did they drop when shooting it? The cinematography is glossy and handheld in many occasions putting you in the midst of the action, the outfits are pretty outrageous, nice environments and the production design is quite intriguing. But, that doesn´t make up for a disaster of a movie. Monica Vitti is stunning, but she doesn´t manage to become Modesty Blaise full on even if she is an uncanny look alike at times. Terence Stamp tries as well to channelise Willie Garvin, but not fully succeeding either. Dirk Bogarde´s Gabriel is too campy, too gay and not very villain like. The scene that truly "killed" the film was the impromptu singing duet between Modesty and Willie... Nah, this is not really worthy of being called Modesty Blaise. It´s just piggybacking in a weird way on this excellent character created by the late and great Peter O'Donnell and Jim Holdaway.
Even though Terence Stamp and Sir Dirk are in it and it's very cool visually it's a terrible story....
This film is about 1000 levels of crazy in the way that only a film made in the latter half of the '60s can be. Tons of fun and hubba hubba Terrence Stamp!
Perfect Bond spoof with exquisite locations and (apparently misunderstood) humour
Talk about Sex Kitten with a Whip!!!! Sexy Spy Kitten A Go Go, with a Gun !!! Loved this years ago & it's Over The Top Fashionistsa Fabulousness has stayed with me.Saw it again recently & realized it didn't have much of a story.In this case, I don't care!I think she is suppose to be a Female James Bond, but more Austin Powers really,with a license to thrill in the bedroom.It was a Film that was so Visually Sensual with the memorably sexy Monica Vitti (who must have been the sexiest woman on the planet), the Decor(Round Bed) , Psychedelic Furniture & accessories, the Exotic Fashion,& even a Middle East Castle at one point.Everything so Camp ,Colorful,& Over the Top Sensual & Stunning.I would buy this Movie if I could find it, regardless of it's lack of depth.It just so personifies the excesses of the affluent & uninhibited, or at least our perception of them, in the swingin' 60's.I can't think of any other film like this, & if I were a fashion Designer, I would borrow ideas from this Film regularly.I think I want to be Monica Vitti in the 60's, I'm Pink All Over With Envy!
A psychedelic mod freakout threw up a James Bond clone and not even General Zod can save it! She's got everything in her powerband toolkit--except a coherent plot. One whole star because the theme song is catchy. "Modessssssteeeeeeeee! Modesty!"
So bad, I enjoyed it. It's absolutely ridiculous, so be warned.
I found this enjoyable enough. Very very 60s which i found very compelling. Stamps Cock(er)ney accent is AWFUL though. But the whole film is over the top but fun.