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Scott Ventura >> Movie Commentary >> April 1998 >> What's Up, Tiger Lily?

What's Up, Tiger Lily?

Movie Commentary by Scott Ventura


Scott's Rating:
4 / 5
Times Seen:
Viewing Date:
April 1998
IMDB Name:
What's Up, Tiger Lily? (1966)
Woody Allen
MPAA Rating:
Unrated (predates MPAA ratings)

When I try to describe this movie to people, they are immediately reminded of "Mystery Science Theater 3000". That's not entirely wrong, but it's misleading. Woody Allen started with the strange Japanese action movie International Secret Police: Key of Keys and replaced all of the sound and text with his own. The movie is billed as having a "no-star cast", and boy is it right! The voices used to overdub the new lines aren't credited, but they probably didn't want to be! Allen's fevered mind turns what is apparently the search for a cryptography key into the search for the ultimate egg-salad recipe. Yep, egg-salad. In its own, zany way, this movie makes perfect sense. The original movie probably didn't need any help to inspire laughs from the audience, but the new text has a lot of zing.


By amazing coincidence, Akiko Wakabayashi and Mie Hama appear in both ISP:KOK and "the Japanese Bond", You Only Live Twice. That would make this a two-star cast. I can't say I really remember either character from either movie, but I'm sure you'll understand.

Helpful correpondent Greg Wall assures me that the voice cast is credited. I apparently saw the movie in a slightly-butchered video release. In addition to the missing credits, a few of the dubbed lines were replaced with less salacious alternatives. I can only hope that an eventual DVD rerelease would set the record straight. Sadly, Allen seems to have distanced himself from the film, marring its chances for a proper DVD treatment.

Copyright 1998-2002 by Scott Ventura. All rights reserved.