An evil mastermind with an addiction to egg salad! Sadistic, torture- hungry double crossers! Gorgeous girls hungry for lovin'! A weird marriage between a cobra and a chicken! Only one man is daring, clever and sexy enoug... more »h to take on this kind of mission: superspy Phil Moscowitz! Woody Allen spoofs the spy thriller in one of his funniest films, a nonstop frenzy of skewed wit, hilarious parody and sidesplitting wackiness. With dialogue rewritten and redubbed for a Japanese James Bond-style movie, What's Up, Tiger Lily? turns the sex-and-danger world of filmdom's spy game upside down!« less
"Thus utters "Wing Fat", Japanese gangster and Wayne Newton lookalike, in Woody Allen's "What's Up, Tiger Lily?" in reference to a much-coveted secret egg salad recipe.
"What's Up, Tiger Lily?" has, in my opinion, always been looked upon as Mr. Allen's filmic poor relation. To the yuppified, nouvelle cuisine-eating self-appointed Allen "aficionados", "Tiger Lily" is a cinematic Nathan's hot dog. What a shame, because it is a very funny, unpretentious, inspired piece of nonsense. Mr. Allen took a 1960s Japanese James Bond [pretend] film, wiped out the dialogue track and, with the help of some very talented performers (including his then-wife Louise "Mary Hartman" Lasser), dubbed in some of the funniest dialogue ever heard on screen. I can't even guess what the plot of the original film was (it's actually pretty [darn] funny without the dialogue), but after Mr. Allen finished with it, the drama centers around the coveted egg salad recipe. The recipe has been stolen from Raspur, a "nonexistent yet real-sounding country", and rival bad guys Shepperd Wong and Wing Fat both want it for their own sinister purposes. Hero Phil Moscowitz (played by Matt Helm [pretend] Tatsuo Mihashi) plays double agent in this mishigas (in between his womanizing shenanigans, unsuccesfully trying to seduce Japanese dolls Miss Teri Yaki and her sister Suki). One must wonder which filmmaker copied who, because actresses Mie Hama and Akiko Wakabayashi, who played the Yaki sisters, both went on to star opposite Sean Connery in the James Bond opus "You Only Live Twice" a few years later! I won't go any further into the plot line of this film, thin as it is, nor will I spoil the fun by quoting the dialogue, but I will simply say that the film is very, very funny and not for the slow-witted. The dialogue is a rapid-fire combination of Borscht Belt humor, and also prefigures the hilarious, brainy quips uttered by the 2 robots on "Mystery Science Theater". There's the obligatory cartoon violence (kick, punch, chop, shoot) and a somewhat superfluous musical score by John Sebastian and The Lovin' Spoonful, and footage of the 1960s rock group is interspersed throughout the film. Undoubtedly this was added to the film to attract the "young, hip" audience. At least the clothes, hairdos and dance steps of the "young folk" are worth a few laughs! And, of course, there are brief filmed interviews with Woody Allen himself, deadpanning and double-talking his way through all of this, making it even funnier, and a striptease by voluptuous China Lee, a former Playboy Playmate, providing even more Asian eye candy for the horndog viewers. "What's Up, Tiger Lily?" is a very enjoyable 89 minutes, but be warned-an hour later, you'll be hungry for more laughs again!"
AVOID THIS VERSION AT ALL COSTS
BOOBERRY MORNING | Reality, CA | 07/20/2001
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Beware : this is an edited version of What's Up Tiger Lily. Some of the dialogue has been changed or erased, resulting in a far less funny movie than it originally was. I have no idea who is responsible for the butchering of this film - whether Woody authorized it or not - but it is not the movie I have seen 10+ times."
Austin Powers, nothin'!
BOOBERRY MORNING | 07/28/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"A hilarious movie. Woody takes a horrible old film, sort of an Asian ripoff of James Bond, cuts out all the sound, and dubs over his soundtrack, his noises, and (most importantly), his voices. If you're like me, you'd be happy to watch the original, un-Woodyfied film just because it's so bad; when Allen goes to work on it, the result is always entertaining and usually very, very funny. There are some great lines in this film that you just don't forget (shuddup or my mustache will eat your beard -- I guess you really have to see the movie for this to be funny, but trust me, it really is). It's Austin Powers-like parody (kinda) and Mystery Science Theater 3000-eque satire (only better, 'cause they get to change the film itself) all rolled up into one. One of the best comedies I've ever seen."
Meet me in the bedroom in 5 minutes and bring a cattle prod.
cookieman108 | Inside the jar... | 01/28/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Ever watch a Japanese movie with really bad, dubbed English? Well, in What's Up, Tiger Lily, Woody Allen went out and bought a Japanese spy movie, completely removed the audio track, and substituted his own, along with some minor editing of some scenes. The result is a pretty funny movie about world-class espionage and egg salad.The 'Allenized' (my own word, don't bother looking it up, as it's not in the dictionary) plot involves the theft of the world's greatest egg salad recipe, and the lengths some will go to recover it. There are guns, beautiful woman, car chases, fights, more guns, action, and a marriage between a snake and a rooster. I will admit some of the dubbed dialogue doesn't work so well, but there are a great number of truly funny scenes and hilarious lines. During one of the fight scenes, Phil Moscowitz, the main character, yells out, 'Saracen pig! Spartan dog! Take this! And this! Roman cow! Russian snake! Spanish fly!' which had me rolling on the floor. The laughs are not always forthcoming, but when they do come, they hit hard, in my opinion. The scenes with the Cobra man were worth it alone for me to watch.Woody is not really in the movie, except for inter cut scenes at the beginning, middle and very end. I kind of wish he had done one of the voices in the dubbing, but you can sense his comedic style of writing throughout the movie. Also included is a wonderful music score by The Lovin' Spoonful and they even make an appearance or two, with the help of some crafty editing.As far as extras on the disc, you can choose to watch the movie with either the original, dubbed track or one created for television. There is even a comprehensive section where you can go in and compared the two sometimes subtlety different tracks. Also included is a fairly complete filmography of Woody Allen. My only little, minor complaint was the text in the extra features sections was small and difficult to read. As a fan of Mystery Science Theater 3000 and Woody Allen, I did enjoy this movie. Although I think many people would just feel this was a silly, stupid movie with little value, I thought it was an interesting experiment, with quite a few laughs for those viewers with a skewed sense of humor and a little patience. And don't forget to click up to highlight Woody's glasses on the main menu for an interesting little hidden feature."
Non-stop laughs. Extremely silly and extremely funny!
Valnastar | Deep 13, USA | 06/13/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"One of Woody Allen's funniest films is this re-edited version of a Japanese James Bond-wannabe. By re-editing the film and then replacing the original Japanese dialog with hilarious gags of his own devising, he's created a sort of Austin Powers type film years earlier. Like Austin Powers, many of the gags are just ultra silly fun while others involve humorous sexual innuendo. The original film is full of spies, gadgets and GORGEOUS girls, just like the James Bond pictures they were trying so hard to imitate.
The only new footage in this film that was not originally from the Japanese spy picture are interviews with Woody Allen wherein he portrays the film's director and some footage of the TERRIFIC Lovin' Spoonful playing their wonderful music. The former is highly amusing and the latter is a real musical treat!
This film is extremely joke dense and hilarious on repeated viewings. If you like Austin Powers, Start The Revolution Without Me, Young Frankenstein, Mystery Science Theater 3000, What's New Pussycat or you like farces in general, you will really enjoy What's Up Tiger, Lily?"