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Saturday, November 5, 2016

Les Tribulations D'un Chinois En Chine (aka Up To His Ears) (1965)

A wealthy but bored young man (Jean Paul Belmondo) is so depressed that he keeps attempting suicide but failing. After signing a life insurance policy, he makes an agreement with an employee (Valery Inkijinoff) to hire someone to murder him. But when he falls in love with a stripper (Ursula Andress), he wants to call the murder contract off. The only problem is that recipients of his life insurance policy want him dead! Very loosely based on Jules Verne's TRIBULATIONS OF A CHINAMAN IN CHINA, this is director Philippe De Broca's "sequel" to his box office hit THAT MAN FROM RIO which also starred Belmondo. Unfortunately, it's an overlong, tedious and unfunny dud with none of the style, wit and charm of RIO. The film really belongs to the stunt men/women who work overtime getting punched, pushed, falling out of planes, dropped into the ocean, crashing into cars etc. Belmondo and Andress spend more time running than acting! After all that frantic activity, a quiet island respite that comes toward the end of the film is welcome. Normally, I love comedies with all the characters running around in a hysterical frenzy (IT'S A MAD MAD MAD MAD WORLD) but this one just didn't work for me. With Jean Rochefort, Maria Pacome, Joe Said, Valerie Lagrange, Mario David and Paul Preboist.

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