Sunday, August 02, 2009

OSS 117 - Lost In Rio

You may not have come across OSS 117 before - he's a French Secret agent. Think 007, but sillier. He's a sort of cross between James Bond and Inspector Clouseau with some American Pie crassness thrown in.

Lost in Rio is set in the 1960's, mostly in Brazil and the clothes, scenery and cars are almost worth going for by themselves. OSS 117 (Hubert Bonisseur de la Bath) has been dispatched to Rio to retrieve a list of French citizens who collaborated with the Germans in WWII, and a further list of Nazis who are in hiding overseas. The person ransoming these lists is a Nazi-in-hiding so Hubert ends up with a glamourous female Mossad agent helping him out. This provides fodder for lots of sexist and racist jokes - along with his king-sized ego and fear of heights, Hubert is incredibly un-pc. He is larger than life with bryl-creemed hair, unnaturally perfect teeth and a fondness for checked sports jackets that some may find cringe-worthy.

Lost in Rio isn't non-stop slapstick French farce of the Ruby and Quentin variety, but there's plenty of action and physical humour - lots of shooting sprees where of course OSS 117 remains untouched and a particularly splendid scene where Hubert's head gets stuck in some lift doors. There's also a big dose of deadpan humour - my favourite example is Hubert going into the German Embassy in Rio and asking for a list of Nazis resident in Brazil.

If you're in the mood for a spoof and general silliness then this could be what you're looking for.

Anne's rating 3.5/5 Ian's rating 4/5

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