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Monday, October 31, 2016

Duffy (1968)

A retired master thief (James Coburn) agrees to help a group of rich and spoiled amateurs steal 2 million dollars from a tycoon's (James Mason) ships. The group includes the tycoon's two sons (James Fox, John Alderton) and a playgirl (Susannah York). Oh, those swinging 60s! This film is a perfect candidate for a time capsule of the era. Words and phrases like "groovy", "it's a happening", "soul brother" etc. leave no doubt what era it was filmed in and if it didn't, the film's chintzy 1960s swinging score does. As directed by Robert Parrish (1967's CASINO ROYALE), nostalgia is about all the picture has going for it. For a heist movie, it's humdrum and incoherent. Donald Cammell (PERFORMANCE) had a hand in the script which might explain the lack of coherency. On the plus side, there's Otto Heller's lush lensing of the Spanish locations (standing in for Tangiers) and Philip Harrison's art direction: Coburn's porno chic pad is a hoot! There's also a marvelous "twist" ending that I didn't see coming but oh what tedium you have to put up with to get there! With Marne Maitland and Guy Deghy.

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