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The Brass Bottle (1964)
Topic Started: Feb 1 2018, 09:04 PM (236 Views)
Laughing Gravy
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The Brass Bottle (1964) Dir. Harry Keller
A Universal Picture
87 interminable min. / Eastman Color / 1.85:1
DVD: Universal

Tony Randall discovers the antique he bought for his in-laws-to-be contains Burl Ives and nobody applauds and asks him to sing "A Little Bitty Tear" or "Holly Jolly Christmas" even because he is in fact a genie, who is so intent on his showing his gratitude to Mr. Randall that he screws up the guy's romance with Barbara Eden (in a GENIE movie? That's hard to believe), gets him fired from his job, and has Police Sergeant Herb Vigran looking to arrest him for keeping camels without a warrant. It all works out in the end, if anyone is still awake (it took me two days, but I made it - barely).

This is a very rotten picture, ladies and gentlemen. It's sort of a family-friendly comedy, but even on that level, it makes The Monkey's Uncle or Rocket to the Moon look like comedy masterpieces. To say this film wastes talent it to say war wastes lives - and Robert Arthur, the guy behind Universal's most popular comedies, including Abbott & Costello and Francis the Mule, produced the darn thing. But '64 he had, it seems, lost his touch.

What enjoyment I DID get out of it...
- Lots and lots of ladies dressed in veils, many of whom dance (the ladies, not the veils; they mainly hit the floor)
- Barbara Eden's parents are played by Edward Andrews (you'd know him if you saw him) and Ann Duran
- Kathie Browne is quite the hottie - she's an artist's model (the plot is more complicated than I have interest to relate) - and she was Mrs. Darrin McGaven!

Even the special effects are lousy in this thing. It's just a complete loser.

Million-dollar Dialog:
Randall to his servants, all of whom are whiter than I am, and I am just about as white as you can get: "Please go! I don't need any slaves! You're all free! Abraham Lincoln arranged it!"

Randall, allowing Mr. Ives to use just a bit of magic to convince the judge that Randall's not a lunatic: "Hocus, but NO pocus."

Miss Eden would go on to more successful outings in the fantasy world by donning the genie costume herself, and the best you can say about this turkey is that it didn't hurt anybody's career - except the writer, director, and producer, maybe. Yeesh, what a lousy movie.
"I'm glad that this question came up, because there are so many ways to answer it that one of them is bound to be right." - Robert Benchley
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Balcony Gang, Foist Class
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Long ago, read a description somewhere and figured it to be the ancestor of "I Dream if Jeannie". Then I saw Disney's "Moon Pilot", a disposable sitcom-type movie that REALLY looks like a proto-Jeannie: Hapless astronaut meets unworldly beauty (a helpful alien trying to protect Earthlings from a space-travel hazard). Superior officer thinks he's crazy and / or consorting with a foreign spy. An FBI-type agency blunders about in search of the girl (J. Edgar reportedly objected to the FBI being portrayed disrespectfully). A chimp is involved.

Coolest thing in the movie is an early sequence of a space capsule being caught by an airplane instead of splashing down.
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Frank Hale
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I think I may have seen this at one time, but it really doesn't matter.

As I've argued before, the early 60's were just about Hollywood's rock bottom, and Universal always seemed like the studio really going for the worst it could offer.

But, hey! That's what gave us the real 60's later on!
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