Friday, October 8, 2010

Lord Love A Duck (1966)

Lord Love A Duck

Written by Larry H. Johnson & George Axelrod
Directed by George Axelrod
Based on the novel by Al Hine

Alan Musgrave...Roddy McDowall
Barbara Ann Greene...Tuesday Weld

Alan Musgrave is one weird kid, and not just because he refers to himself as the Mollymauk, "a bird thought to be extinct, but isn't."  He has a high IQ but very few friends, and seems perfectly content with that.  And why not?  Despite his average appearance and apparent lack of drive, he seems capable of, well...just about anything, really.  With a seemingly endless supply of keys to all the important locked doors in town, the ability to talk just about anybody into doing just about anything, and a Kung-Fu that is very strong indeed (ever see a "pencil neck" beat the hell out of a Lou Ferrigno-sized quarterback?  You will!), the world has very little boundaries for him.  He's like Mike Damone crossed with Charlie Eppes.  Namely, the kind of guy you would like to have on your side.

So when Allen decides to take the beautiful Barbara Ann Greene under his Mollymauk wing, she's perfectly willing to let him help make her dreams come true--like a mammoth Jiminy Cricket--whether that dream be a collection of new Cardigan sweaters, a vacation on the beaches of Balboa, a husband, or an acting career.

Allow me to state right now that I'm not entirely sure what this film wants to be.  For that matter, I'm not entirely sure that it knows what it wants to be, either.  Part romance, part satire, part dark comedy, part drama, part counter-culture experiment, it seems almost like a dozen different short features all balled into one like a big screen skit from Whose Line Is It Anyway?  It's all over the map, and there's not so much a storyline as there are multiple different scenarios that come and go as they please, all starring the same characters.  Moving Polaroid snapshots of a year in the life of the Mighty Mollymauk and his friends.

With its catchy pop soundtrack, moments of low-key surrealism, hilariously dark humor, and youthful cast, it's sort of a bastard hybrid of Frankie and Annette beach movies, Repo Man, I Dream of Jeanie, and Heathers.  A strange combination to be sure, and one that never ceases to be at the very least interesting.

Some of the more amusing moments include a drive-in church ("worship from the comfort of your car"), a marriage counselor chaperon overly concerned with the welfare of one underage girl while he's attempting to nail another one behind a boulder, and the absolutely ludicrous sweater-shopping and hot dog-eating excursion between Barbara Ann and her bizarro father who cackles incessantly like a forgotten Batman villain.

Fans of the bizarre may want to check this out, as well as anyone who just wants to watch a whole bevy of retro swingin' sex kittens shake their tail-feathers in the most mod bikinis this side of Fort Lauderdale.  And really, who among us doesn't want to see that?

This wacky romp has to be seen to be believed, and ought to be playing in Midnight Movie revival theaters across America.

Give Rocky Horror a break already, people.

Not Rated
105 Minutes
Black & White
United States

"Honey, you know I never go out with a married man on the first date."


  1. One of my absolute favorite films of all time. There's nothing else quite like it. For sure!

  2. Love LLAD! That scene where Tuesday's tryin' on the sweaters for her father though..c-r-e-e-p-y!
    {P.S. WV is "renthips")

  3. Thanks for the feeback, fellas. Glad to see that I'm not the only one with some mad love for this crazy-ass film!


  4. jervaise brooke hamsterSeptember 22, 2011 at 3:46 PM

    I want to bugger Tuesday Weld (when the bird was 18, not as the bird is now obviously).


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