Parents' Guide to

Curse of the Pink Panther

By Charles Cassady Jr., Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 11+

One of the weaker entries in the series.

Movie PG 1984 109 minutes
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It's just not the same without Peter Sellers. After Sellers died in 1980, director Blake Edwards tried to relaunch the hugely-popular "Pink Panther" comedy series, which had starred Sellers as the clumsy Inspector Clouseau. Edwards shot this transitional sequel CURSE OF THE PINK PANTHER back-to-back with the hapless farewell to Sellers, Trail of the Pink Panther (completed using outtakes and clips of the late Peter Sellers from older Panther adventures). Wass, a likeable, lightweight type, seems to have been cast as a deliberate echo of the silent-screen era's master of slapstick, Harold Lloyd, right down to the famous glasses. This isn't a bad long as you're making a Harold Lloyd style comedy, maybe about a tweedy suitor or an accident-prone college kid. As a New York cop, he's just not very convincing, and doesn't have the spark that Sellers brought to Clouseau, the falling-down stuff combined with a snooty ego of a bumbler who truly believed he really was the greatest crime fighter of all time.

Viewers are tipped off early that Clouseau has had plastic surgery and is in hiding (why he's done this is a whole different question, not really answered). When you see Clouseau with the bandages off, he's a certain movie superstar, whom we won't specify because the gag's too good. But even this eminent guest star, broadly mimicking the haughty arrogance and the disastrous pratfalls of Sellers, shows us the mojo that this pleasant, forgettable Clifton Sleigh just doesn't have.

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