A Fish Called Wanda (1998) Film Review

After successfully pulling off a diamond heist, four crims are waiting for the heat to pass so they can get their money and enjoy a life of luxury. But what Georges (Tom Georgeson) is not aware is that Otto (Kevin Kline) is not, in fact the brother of Georges’ girlfriend Wanda (Jamie Lee Curtis), but her lover. And when Georges ends up in jail, set up for the crime, the only person he truly trusts is Ken (Michael Palin). What Otto doesn’t know is that Wanda is out for herself, sick of his narcissism. And then there’s Georges’ lawyer, Archie (John Cleese) who also falls for Wanda. And then things get complicated.

I often mention my fear about revisiting films and books of my youth, fear that something I loved will have aged, or what was considered harmless fun is now recognised as being harmful bigotry. For the most part, this film held up for me. I mean, the story is ridiculous, but it’s a lot of fun. There’s some casual homophobia, though some might argue that it’s there to highlight what a monster a particular character is. I feel it would be done differently now, it truly is fascinating to see how societal changes have taken place over the last couple of decades. Overall, I really enjoy the film and have always especially loved the scene between Otto and Ken at the airport. So ridiculous.

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