Review: ‘Darling Lili’

Darling Lili is a conglomerate. In its World War I expanse, the Blake Edwards presentation has comedy, adventure melodrama, aerial dogfights, spectacular production numbers, nostalgia, Julie Andrews and Rock Hudson, lush trappings, lack of a decisive hand, and smash moments. These elements are juggled sometimes with eclat and a flair, on other occasions abruptly and none too successfully.

Darling Lili is a conglomerate. In its World War I expanse, the Blake Edwards presentation has comedy, adventure melodrama, aerial dogfights, spectacular production numbers, nostalgia, Julie Andrews and Rock Hudson, lush trappings, lack of a decisive hand, and smash moments. These elements are juggled sometimes with eclat and a flair, on other occasions abruptly and none too successfully.

Andrews is a German spy whose mission is to ferret out war secrets. She latches onto a relationship with Hudson, in role of a dashing American air squadron commander, who knows all.

Andrews’ best moments are her singing sequences, in which she does full justice to five numbers cleffed by Johnny Mercer and Henry Mancini.

1970: Nomination: Best Costume Design, Original Song Score, Song (‘Whistling Away the Dark’)

Darling Lili

Production

Paramount/Geoffrey. Director Blake Edwards; Producer Blake Edwards; Screenplay Blake Edwards, William Peter Blatty; Camera Russell Harlan; Editor Peter Zinner; Music Henry Mancini; Art Director Fernando Carrere

Crew

(Color) Widescreen. Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1970. Running time: 139 MIN.

With

Julie Andrews Rock Hudson Jeremy Kemp Lance Percival Michael Witney Jacques Marin
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