Woody Allen’s first movie is his take off on the secret agent genre. He’s taken the Japanese spy movie,”International Secret Police:Key Of Keys” and turned it on its head. It’s loaded with babes,bullets,action and…laughs.
The movie opens with a lot action and then…there’s Woody explaining that he’s been asked to do the definitive spy movie. He re-dubbed the Japanese movie using his voice along with Louise Lasser and a number of other American actors. Now back to the movie. The Lovin’ Spoonful provide the music and even appear a couple times on screen.
A girl escapes from prison and by mistake ends up in a car driven by Phil Moscowitz. As things move along Phil is captured and taken to meet the head of a country that is so new that it isn’t on the map. The ruler wants Phil to find the secret recipe for the world’s best egg salad. He’ll have a couple female assistants.
Phil has competition in the form of Wing Fat. Wing is on the gambling boat of Shepard Wong. Wong stole the recipe and Wing gets it and even takes Wong’s picture. He says when developed Wong will be naked and Wing says he’s going to show it everywhere. He escapes to a waiting boat.
Before the movie goes much further Woody shows up. He’s asked to explain the movie so far because it’s complicated. He refuses. Back to the movie.
You’ll see a nutcase with a pet cobra who can’t stop trying to sound like Peter Lorre and even the villain tries his hand at W.C.Fields. There are a number of very funny and ridiculous scenes to come as the competition for the recipe heats up.
It may wear on you after the first hour but there’s only nineteen minutes to go. It’s worth the trip.