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Friday, July 3, 2015

Touche Pas A La Femme Blanche (aka Don't Touch The White Woman) (1974)

A group of economists who are the" behind the scenes" men who run the country decide that the undesirables which are destroying the foundation of U.S. society must be eliminated. Since the undesirables consist of tribes like the Sioux, Cheyenne and Algerians (sic), they turn to Colonel George Armstrong Custer (Marcello Mastroianni) to do the job for them. Marco Ferreri's unsubtle political satire is a misfire. The setting is the United States, Richard Nixon is the president but the film is obviously set in Paris! As Indians leave their reservation, they march through the streets of Paris as do Custer's soldiers among the parked automobiles. What can one say about a film where the leading man is Italian speaking French playing an American legend? To be fair, I don't think it was Ferreri's intent to fool anyone. It's clearly an allegory on America's (then) involvement in Vietnam. But it just doesn't work, it's too obvious and heavy handed. With Catherine Deneuve as the white woman of film's title, Michel Piccoli as Buffalo Bill (and the only one who attempts an American accent), Ugo Tognazzi, Philippe Noiret, Alain Cuny as Sitting Bull and Serge Reggiani.

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