Writer/director Woody Allen explains that when he was asked to supervise the making of the definitive spy thriller, what he decided to do was acquire the rights to a B-grade Japanese spy caper (Key of Keys (1965)) filmed with Japanese actors in Japanese, delete the existing soundtrack, and redub into English and reorder select scenes to create an entirely new movie, a comedy, having nothing to do with the original story-line. The result... International spy Phil Moscowitz, working out of the Asia bureau, is a self-professed lovable rogue with sex always on his mind. He inadvertently gets involved in a mission, the client the Grand Exalted High Majah of Raspur. The success of the mission will determine if Raspur, a non-existent country that nonetheless sounds real, will indeed become real. Moscowitz is to retrieve something stolen from the Majah by criminal Shepherd Wong: the best ever egg salad recipe. Phil is to be assisted by two of the Majah's own agents, sisters Teri and Suki Yaki...Written by
Woody Allen and a group of friends only did 60 minutes of dialogue for the movie. An additional 19 minutes was recorded using an actor mimicking Allen, plus footage of The Lovin' Spoonful. These additions were made without Allen's consultation. See more »
When the Port of Yokohama is shown, the captions call it "Yokahama". See more »
In the closing credits, Woody Allen watches a striptease. The credits appear on the right side of the screen as the striptease goes on and at the end there is a statement: "And if you have been reading this instead of looking at the girl, then see your psychiatrist, or go to a good eye doctor." And then an eye chart appears. See more »
Over 20 years ago this film was acquired by Castle Hill Productions. The version that they have been distributing in the U.S. has been altered from the original version distributed by American International. These changes are primarily changes in the comic dubbed dialogue. For example, Kumi Mizuno chases after a car and yells "Hey! You've got my vibrator!" in the original U.S. version. This line has been changed to "Hey! That's a rented car!" See more »
I have noticed several posts here about how people had seen this movie years ago and thought it was hysterical, but then have recently seen it on TV and wondered why they thought so back then. The answer is that you are probably watching a different version.
Although I am sure someone more in tune with the background of this movie can explain it in more precise and detailed terms, the version being shown on networks like TCM has been re-written, re-dubbed and is a lot less funny than the original. I have a copy from a 1982 video tape and that original version is great. I saw the TCM broadcast version and couldn't believe how badly the jokes were changed and how unfunny this film now is, most likely in the name of political correctness. I can certainly understand anyone being dissatisfied with the film as it is now. However, if you can, find an old video of this classic and watch it the way it was meant to be seen.
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