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The Return of the Pink Panther (1975)
Comedy,Crime
UK / English
Inspector Clouseau is put on the case when the Pink Panther diamond is stolen, with the Phantom's trademark glove the only clue.
Peter Sellers Insp. Jacques Clouseau
Christopher Plummer Sir Charles Litton
Catherine Schell Lady Claudine Litton
Herbert Lom Chief Insp. Charles Dreyfus
Peter Arne Col. Sharky
Peter Jeffrey Gen. Wadafi
Grégoire Aslan Police Chief Lundallah (as Gregoire Aslan)
David Lodge Mac
Graham Stark Pepi
Eric Pohlmann The Fat Man
André Maranne Sgt. François Chevalier
Burt Kwouk Cato Fong
Victor Spinetti Hotel Concierge
John Bluthal Blind Beggar
Mike Grady Bellboy
Director: Blake Edwards
Producer: Blake Edwards
Writer: Frank Waldman,Blake Edwards
Guaranteed to Tickle You Pink
Although it's already Peter Sellers' third outing in the series, "The Return of the Pink Panther" sets the tone for all of the Pink Panther movies still to come. Fast, furious, wacky, and hilarious.

In fact, this movie is, in many respects, the movie the first should have been. The plot once again revolves around the Pink Panther diamond. The chief suspect is once again Sir Charles "The Phantom" Lytton. And, of course, Peter Sellers is once again on the case as the one-of-a-kind Jacques Clouseau.

Class act David Niven has been replaced by the equally classy Christopher Plummer ("Murder by Decree", "The Sound of Music", "Dragnet"). His portrayal of Sir Charles is more dashing and youthful than Niven's. In this film, his character is also more likable, simply because he's working alongside Clouseau rather than against him.

And Inspector Clouseau, the underdog, is now, finally, the hero. He's been demoted to bumbling Parisian street cop by his slightly crooked boss, Chief Inspector Dreyfus (played hilariously for the second time by Herbert Lom.) Then the president of Lugash specifically requests Clouseau be restated in order to find the Pink Panther diamond, which has been stolen from a museum. The return of the Pink Panther diamond is Clouseau's responsibility.

The film is divided between Clouseau's quest to find Sir Charles, whom he blames for the Panther's disappearance, and Sir Charles' quest to find the Panther and by doing so clear his name. Clouseau's adventure is filled with more slapstick than in either of the previous two films, and good slapstick, at that. Peter Sellers plays Clouseau in the way that only he could, with results that are guaranteed to make any comedy fan laugh. Meanwhile, Sir Charles' side of the story is filled with action and international intrigue, in a plot that's absurd and confusing, but to be expected from a Pink Panther film. Graham Stark, who played Clouseau's partner in "A Shot in the Dark", now appears as Sir Charles' put-upon underworld informant.

All is finally right with the Pink Panther universe. Sir Charles is finally likable. It's okay to empathize towards Clouseau. And there's humor in the romantic cat-and-mouse game between Sir Charles' new bride and Clouseau. Lady Lytton is played by Catherine Schell ("On Her Majesty's Secret Service"), and is, interestingly enough, not the ex-Mrs. Clouseau, one of the earliest cracks in the series' fragile continuity. However, it's amusing to see Lady Lytton take advantage of Clouseau and those around her, whereas in the first movie it just seemed unfair when Clouseau's wife treated him the same way.

Personal
Seen it:Ja
Nr of disks/tapes:1
Storage device:Divx 4
Loan
Movie
Imdb rating: 6.8
Musician: Henry Mancini
Running time: 113 min
Technical
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Last modified: 2007-07-19 20:27:3