Jayne Mansfield teams with Tony Randall in this hilarious spoof about an ad man who nabs a movie star for his campaign — and opens a can of worms in the process. Ad writer Rockwell Hunter (Randall) thinks he’s hit the jackpot when sexy starlet Rita Marlowe (Mansfield) agrees to endorse a line of lipstick he’s touting. But when the press mistakes the business partnership for an affair, it’ll take some tricky maneuvers to set the story straight.
Few filmmakers have moved as easily between animated and non-animated work as New Jersey-born Frank Tashlin. A school drop-out at age 13, he drifted into a multitude of jobs before he went to work for producer Paul Terry at 17, as a cartoonist on Terry’s Aesop’s Film Fables animated shorts. Three years later he was working as a gagman for Hal Roach, and soon after began his own comic strip, which ran through 1939. He worked for Disney’s story department until the mid ‘40s, and later joined Warner Bros., where he became a director for Leon Schlesinger’s cartoon unit. But from the middle of the decade onward, he moved out of animated work entirely and into comedy screenwriting, adapting One Touch of Venus as a film vehicle, and then taking up writing for Bob Hope (The Paleface, etc.) and Red Skelton (The Fuller Brush Man, etc.), and later became a director for Jerry Lewis (Geisha Boy, Cinderfella), Hope (Son of Paleface), and Doris Day (The Glass Bottom Boat). His experience in cartoons… read more
Tashlin, grand-pappy of the vulgar auteurists? Style exploding in its deliberately artificial lighting and color, metatextual farce doubles as social critique as Tashlin establishes the Mobius strip structure of culture's relationship to pop culture and how the two are locked in a cycle of influence that dumbs down both. Blistering stuff, but never cynical.
"The bowdlerizing of and other changes in Axelrod's first successful play, The Seven Year Itch, in the 1955 film adaptation that he wrote with director Billy Wilder, apparently soured Axelrod on movies in general and Hollywood in particular, which fed directly into the satire of his Rock Hunter." - Jonathan Rosenbaum
An obscure Frank Tashlin comedy exceeds expectations and reveals a fascinating phase in his artistic development.
Do you remember the old Peanuts strips in which Linus would skitter about in anxiety, complaining to Lucy that he'd suddenly become "aware