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The Pink Panther Strikes Again

By Jeff Shannon

Although A Shot in the Dark is often cited as the best of the Pink Panther comedies starring Peter Sellers, the fifth film in the series--The Pink Panther Strikes Back--is a close runner-up. Combining a James Bond-ish plot with Sellers's trademark lunacy as Inspector Clouseau, the film finds Chief Inspector Dreyfus (Herbert Lom) driven insane by Clouseau's incompetence, threatening global destruction unless Clouseau is eliminated once and for all. Of course, the bumbling Clouseau leads a kind of charmed life, emerging relatively unscathed (and completely oblivious) from a phalanx of 26 unlucky assassins! Along the way, Sellers dons a variety of costumes and hilarious accents, and his improvisational style is given free reign. Karate showdowns with his valet, Cato (Bert Kwouk), once again keep Clouseau on his toes, and lovely Lesley-Anne Down plays a would-be assassin who finds Clouseau amorously irresistible. Highlights include the memorable "Does your dog bite?" scene between Clouseau and a goofy innkeeper, and a dental extraction scene in which Sellers and Lom reached the peak of their on-screen comedic antagonism. For good ol' fashioned slapstick comedy, they don't get much funnier than this.

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"The Pink Panther Strikes Again is one of the greatest comedy movies of all time with the late, great Peter Sellers as Inspector Clouseau. I saw it at the movie theater when it was first released when I was young & I couldn't stop laughing from beginning to end since it's the best one of the series. The Pink Panther Strikes Again is flawless with lots of slapstick humor that's not moronic unlike most of today's comedy movies which is why it's a masterpiece."

--Wayne L.

 

FILM FACTS

Buy this VHS movie from Amazon.com! (Click here!)Buy this DVD from Amazon.com! (Click here!)Buy this soundtrack from Amazon.com! (Click here!)Rated PGNot on an American Film Institute 100 list

Director: Blake Edwards

Stars: Peter Sellers, Herbert Lom, Catherine Schell, Herbert Lom, Burt Kwouk, Peter Arne, Gregoire Aslan, Andre Maranne, Victor Spinetti

Released: December 15, 1976

Availability: DVD VHS CD


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