Perfect Friday (1970) from ICMS

What a pleasant surprise this movie was for me.
 
There are three main characters in this feature about a bank heist. First we have the bank deputy under-manager Mr. Graham (Stanley Baker), secondly there's Nick (David Warner), the Earl of Dorset, and thirdly we have the earl's gorgeous Swiss wife, Britt (Ursula Andress). The earl and his wife are practically destitute, so they come up with a plan to rob a bank. Not with guns and all that, but rather with a devious scheme to get the money without the bank noticing.
 
So far nothing ground-breaking you will say. True indeed, but a very entertaining 90 minutes of viewing pleasure are produced by the clever non-linear editing with flashbacks within flashbacks and then forth again, the witty dialogue, and the ongoing question of exactly which of the three are conning which others (or are they all conning each other), and whether the heist will succeed. Add a surprise ending, some solid acting performances by the three lead actors, and some excellent nude scenes by Ursula Andress, and you start realizing what a shame it is that this little gem hasn't made it to DVD somewhere in the world.
 
Oh yeah, and they managed all this without any special effects, without expensive cgi, and even without any violence. The characters were all recognizable human beings you could root for. Compare that to the dehumanized empty shells that constitute today's characters in senseless flicks like Constantine or Catwoman and you know my preference. For the price of the special effects in those films they could have gotten Rachel Weisz and Halle Berry out of their clothes for most of the time. Then there might have been a "raison d'Ítre" for those movies after all.

Modern filmmakers, please take a leaf out of Perfect Friday's book and start making films again with a decent plot and interesting characters that are real human beings.

Thanks in advance.

NUDITY REPORT

Ursula Andress shows it all at one time or another.

The Critics Vote ...

The People Vote ...

The meaning of the IMDb score: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence equivalent to about three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, comparable to approximately two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, equivalent to about a two star rating from the critics, or a C- from our system. Films rated below five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film - this score is roughly equivalent to one and a half stars from the critics or a D on our scale. (Possibly even less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. (C+ means it has no crossover appeal, but will be considered excellent by genre fans, while C- indicates that it we found it to be a poor movie although genre addicts find it watchable). D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well. Any film rated C- or better is recommended for fans of that type of film. Any film rated B- or better is recommended for just about anyone. We don't score films below C- that often, because we like movies and we think that most of them have at least a solid niche audience. Now that you know that, you should have serious reservations about any movie below C-.

Based on this description, it's a C+, top-notch genre fare, undeservedly forgotten.

Return to the Movie House home page