Pemberley (Lyme Park, Cheshire)

Pemberley (Lyme Park, Cheshire)
Oh, to be in England...

Saturday, August 24, 2013

A Fish Called Wanda 1988

A tale of murder, lust, greed, revenge and seafood!

I understand that a comedy set in 1988 is not a period drama, but this is my blog and A Fish Called Wanda is one of my fave films of all time. Yes, it has lots of swearing and raunchiness in it, but it is all there for comedic effect. And I would much rather see this film than the crappy violence in the theatres these days. In fact, we watched this at the cottage with our adult sons and their girlfriends a few weeks ago. And boy does it ever hold up. Great comedy is great comedy.

Archie: All right, all right, I apologize.
Otto: You're really sorry?
Archie: I'm really really sorry. I apologize unreservedly.
Otto: You take it back?
Archie: I do. I offer a complete and utter retraction. The imputation was totally without basis in fact, and was in no way fair comment, and was motivated purely by malice, and I deeply regret any distress that my comments may have caused you or your family, and I hereby undertake not to repeat any such slander at any time in the future.

Archie: Wanda, do you have any idea what it's like being English? Being so correct all the time, being so stifled by this dread of, of doing the wrong thing, of saying to someone, 'Are you married?' and hearing, 'My wife left me this morning' or saying, uh, 'Do you have children?' and being told they all burned to death on Wednesday. You see, Wanda, We're all terrified of embarrassment. That's why we're so - dead. Most of my friends are dead, you know; we've these piles of corpses to dinner. But you're alive, God bless you, and I want to be, I'm so fed up with all this. I want to make love with you, Wanda. I'm a good lover - at least, used to be, back in the early 14th century. Can we go to bed?

Otto: Guess I'll have to ask you an easy one, eh, Ken? OK. Um...Let me think, let me think. Um...Where are the diamonds? I'll give you a clue. Somewhere around the airport.
Ken: I'm n-n-n...
Otto: No hassle. There's plenty of time. I'll just sit here and eat my chips till you tell me. The English contribution to world cuisine: the chip. What do the English usually eat with chips to make them more interesting? Wait a moment! It's fish. Isn't it? [Dipping into the fish tank with a net] Oh! Here, boy. Down the hatch. [Eats the fish] Delicious!
Ken: You b-b-b...
Otto: Better eat the green one? OK. What's this one's name? Well, not Wanda, anyway. I'm going to call her Lunch. Hello, Lunch. Hello! [Eats the fish] Ew! Avoid the green ones - not ripe yet!

Otto: Don't call me stupid.
Wanda: Oh, right! To call you stupid would be an insult to stupid people! I've known sheep that could outwit you. I've worn dresses with higher IQs. But you think you're an intellectual, don't you ape?
Otto: Apes don't read philosophy.
Wanda: Yes they do, Otto. They just don't understand it. Now let me correct you on a couple of things, OK? Aristotle was not Belgian. The central message of Buddhism is not "Every man for himself" and the London Underground is not a political movement. Those are all mistakes, Otto. I looked them up.

Ken: Re-venge!
Otto: [Laughing] It's K-K-K-Ken! C-c-c-coming to k-k-k-kill me! How you gonna c-c-c-catch me K-K-K-Ken?

Politically incorrect? Absolutely. But Ken does get his revenge, doesn't he? If you haven't seen this one in a while, it is well worth seeking out. And don't watch the watered down TV version. This one deserves to be seen uncut and without commercials.

Any other fans out there???



  1. I LOVE this movie! It's so silly; the dog and the piano....

  2. Oh I so agree. Love this movie! Not a weak link in it anywhere, a true ensemble. Michael Palin has some interesting things to say about the making of it in his diaries, particularly the differences between the American and British attitudes to acting.

  3. The first time I watched this movie, I loathed it. Then, for some reason, I ended up watching it again a few years later and I loved it. You quoted all the best bits, but it really is a very funny movie. Otto is my favorite :)

  4. I, of course, absolutely ADORE this film (we are related, after all!) and although it's hard to choose a favourite quote, I'd have to say it's Jamie Lee Curtis' line: "I've worn dresses with higher IQ's!" Priceless!
    Must ... watch ... again.

  5. Yes, I love this movie too. I mean, it's been a long time since I watched it and I was rather young back then, but remember enjoying it a lot.




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