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The Owl And The Pussycat
USA 1970
Directed by Herbert Ross
Running time 95 minutes
Rated PG

Reviewed by
Bernard Hemingway
3 stars

This screen adaptation by director Herbert Ross and writer Buck Henry (The Graduate and Catch-22) takes Bill Manhoff's snappy inter-racial 1964 stageplay about the unlikely pairing of a would-be writer and a rough diamond hooker and gives us a generally amusing 95 minutes.

Originally played onstage by Alan Alda and African-American actress, Diana Sands, the all-white film version sees George Segal and Barbra Streisand in the leads (Streisand had wanted Sidney Poitier but the producer Ray Stark was not comfortable with what for the time would have been a highly provocative decision. Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor both turned down the roles).

Both the leads play the odd couple dynamic well with Streisand well-worth the price of the ticket.

FYI: The title is a reference to Edward Lear's famous nonsense poem. Veteran cinematographer Harry Stradling Sr, died during production




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