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What’s Up, Tiger Lily? (1966): Woody Allen Has Never Been Funny

What’s Up, Tiger Lily? (Woody Allen, 1966)


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The poster is the funniest thing about this mess.

I am one of those people who has never “gotten” the humor of Woody Allen, and the more of his movies I watch in a misguided attempt to get it, the more I realize that will probably never happen. My most recent brush with Allen was his first movie—if you can call it that.

What’s Up, Tiger Lily? starts off with a brief interview with Allen where he describes the process of what we would call today repurposing the film International Secret Police: Key of Keys by adding a different voice-dub track. To cut short all of the aimless fluff that would normally follow that in a review, I’ll just tell you the end result: what you get is a Woody Allen movie without the visuals. In effect, it’s a concentrated dose of Woody Allen: if you like his jokes, you’ll probably like this movie, though the IMDB forum for the film is full of people who otherwise seem to adore Woody Allen but consider this movie boring. On the other hand, if you’re not an Allen fan, this is going to seem even worse than his usual fare, as it was for me. It’s a personal thing, I guess; comedy, like horror, is different for everyone, and when it misses, it really misses. That’s the case here for me. Your mileage may vary. *


Not the trailer, the full film.

About Robert "Goat" Beveridge

Media critic (amateur, semi-pro, and for one brief shining moment in 2000 pro) since 1986. Guy behind noise/powerelectronics band XTerminal (after many small stints in jazz, rock, and metal bands). Known for being tactless but honest.

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