We were inspired to see this again after watching Dudley Moore in Arthur, and remembering how good he was here in his first American film. He had made several films in England, including the fantastically funny Bedazzled with his comic partner, Peter Cook, but this film put him on the road to being an unlikely romantic star. It was this film that attracted Blake Edwards when he was casting 10, which was a huge hit.
It works pretty well as a screwball comedy, with Chevy Chase as a rather klutzy cop, and Goldie Hawn the girl who everyone is trying to kill. But the funniest bits don’t really belong to them. Dudley is a sex-crazed guy who Goldie encounters twice, each time causing funny misunderstandings as he tries to protect his reputation. At the end we discover what his job is, which is director of an orchestra at a performance of The Mikado. Seeing him transform his apartment from a normal place to his idea of the perfect bachelor pad is hilarious, with each new revelation topping the one that came before.
Then, during the big car chase at the end (which is quite a good one) the stars commandeer a limo, not knowing there is an elderly Japanese couple in the back seat. At first they are frightened, but after Goldie mentions Kojak they seem to think they are in a movie, and they have the time of their lives, laughing it up. The opera at the end is one of my favorites, and is very well performed.