The Man Who Knew Too Little (1997)

JON AMIEL

Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBB

USA/Germany, 1997.  Warner Bros., Regency Enterprises, Polar Productions, Taurus Film.  Screenplay by , , based on the novel Watch That Man by Robert Farrar.  Cinematography by .  Produced by , .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by , .  

Bill Murray is delightful in this spry comedic version of The Game that combines British wit and American slapstick with impressive flair. He plays a doltish Blockbuster Video employee who comes to London to visit his industrial mogul brother () on the night that the brother is to make a very important presentation to some business associates. Hoping to get rid of his very embarrassing sibling for the evening, Gallagher signs Murray up for “The Theatre Of Life”, a role-playing theatrical activity that allows customers to interact with actors putting on a show, accompanying them through London and experiencing a staged adventure. Unfortunately, Murray gets his signals crossed and accidentally winds up getting involved in real espionage, hooking up with a femme fatale () and hilariously surviving many dangerous situations with incredible ease because of his whimsical luck and nonchalant attitude. The whole time he still believes he’s in a game, while the fate of the British empire rests in his very incapable hands. Rib-tickling situations abound in a surprisingly enjoyable film considering it’s a one-joke premise, with Murray’s bubbly performance and the brisk direction keeping it afloat.

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