If some joke might be old fashion, if it does not work all the time, this avant-garde comedy is full of visual ideas and venimous comments about TV and good-for-nothing-celebrities. Tony Randall plays a sort of Jack Lemmon, Jayne Mansfield another Marylin, it's all about playing roles and pretending as long as the camera rolls.
"Cartoonish" is a high compliment, here; it's a living, breathing, utterly delightful and brilliantly realized Looney Toon. Kudos to all the intrepid performers, production/costume designers, set decorators, composers/musicians, and the great DP Joe McDonald, all marshaled exquisitely to make Tashlin's inimitably sweet and vivacious satirical sensibility exude from every shot and action.
Serious non-commitment to polemics and dislocations, easy to see what attracted young Godard; Betsy Drake's body image anxieties prefigure 'Une femme mariée' on some level. But the best thing is the point where you realize that Jayne Mansfield's psychotic cooing is more important than her bust. She didn't die; she deflated.
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
A terrific film and still very relevant in today's obsession with celebrities. The film pokes fun at the facades of advertisement. It shows how the advertising business spends so much time convincing ordinary people that they're lacking in something when they aren't. Alongside the social commentary is beautiful technicolor and great comedic moments. A very entertaining and thought-provoking film.