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Columbia TriStar Home Video presents
There's a Girl in My Soup (1970)

Julia: You're wonderful.
Robert: I know I am.

- Gabrielle Drake, Peter Sellers

Review By: Jeff Rosado   
Published: November 30, 2003

Stars: Peter Sellers, Goldie Hawn
Other Stars: Tony Britton, John Comer, Diana Dors, Nicola Pagett, Gabrielle Drake, Nicky Henson
Director: Roy Boulting

Manufacturer: DVDL
MPAA Rating: R for (language, nudity, risqué humour)
Run Time: 01h:35m:35s
Release Date: December 02, 2003
UPC: 043396106352
Genre: comedy


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
B- C+B+B D+

DVD Review

There's a Girl in My Soup is a cinematic curio from 1970 that represented somewhat of a last gasp for the swinging European-based sex comedies of the decade past. It also marked the reunion of Peter Sellers with producer/director team of John and Roy Boulting, whose previous collaborations resulted in classic British comedic gems including I'm All Right Jack and Heavens Above! Though nowhere near the stature of those efforts, Soup's mixture of dryly sophisticated dialogue and sex farce shenanigans result in mildly diverting if not memorable entertainment.

Robert Danvers (Sellers) is a vain, television cooking show host whose culinary skills are exceeded only by his mojo. With sly, irresistible charm, he's able to attract many a bird, only to dispose of them once another notch is recorded. Then, one evening while waiting to make a perfunctory appearance at a society event, he crosses paths with Marion (Goldie Hawn), a 19-year-old American who's nursing a broken heart after her drummer boyfriend (Nicky Henson) becomes unfaithful. But Danvers' usual routine and stock repartee is all but lost on the latest apple of his eye, and she's in no mood for games once she figures him out. Instead of moving on to the next conquest, Danvers finds himself smitten; although it takes a while, she sees beyond his egotistical exterior to find a human being does indeed lurk within, at least every once in a while.

Despite some snappy, occasional laugh-out-loud dialogue, Sellers' keen comic skills, and Hawn's daffy sweetness, There's a Girl in My Soup is not unlike an entreé you have the waiter send back to the kitchen for a more tasty replacement. All the ingredients seem to be in place for a satisfying romantic comedy (especially after an impressive opening 15 minutes), but the Sellers-Hawn combination never quite solidifies in terms of chemistry, which is evident in their first scene inside Danver's bachelor pad, a moment which abruptly shifts from comic foreplay to almost soap-opera drama while winding down. In a way, the movie's like that too, unable to decide if it's a character study of a narcissistic twit, an "opposites attract" lovefest, or slapstick silliness.

Still, it's worth sitting through once, if only to marvel at how seasoned Hawn's acting abilities had become only two films into her big screen career. While Sellers has his moments, the inventive energy that he invested in more memorable roles (Lolita, Dr. Strangelove) is strangely absent here, resulting in a mainly one-note performance. Soup's shortcomings will be endured better by British pop culture junkies who will enjoy seeing appearances by familiar faces including Nicky Henson, Diana Dors (the U.K. equivalent to Marilyn Monroe who graced the cover of The Beatles' Sgt. Pepper album), Tony Britton (who gives the film's best performance as Danvers' loyal friend), Upstairs, Downstairs' Nicola Pagett and Gabrielle Drake (the wedding party guest Robert seduces while his television program plays in the background, perhaps the movie's funniest sequence).

Rating for Style: B-
Rating for Substance: C+

 

Image Transfer

 OneTwo
Aspect Ratio1.85:1 - Widescreen1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyesno
Anamorphicyesno


Image Transfer Review: Once you get past the rough opening credits, we're talking "lovely." The print utilized for the re-master is rich in color, possesses razor sharp clarity and is vibrant yet natural-looking in appearance with very little in the way of discrepancies (occasional flickers and dirt pop in here and there but never to the point of real distraction); extremely impressive for a film of this era.

Image Transfer Grade: B+

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
MonoEnglishyes


Audio Transfer Review: The audio compliments its visual counterpart with a very crisp and warm Dolby Digital mono soundtrack. It won't bowl you over like a modern-day multi-channel offering, but it's pleasing to the ears, particularly during former Manfred Mann vocalist Mike D'abo's instantly catchy pop songs).

Audio Transfer Grade: B

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 28 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English, French with remote access
5 Other Trailer(s) featuring Cactus Flower, Fun With Dick and Jane, Maid in Manhattan, My Best Friend's Wedding, Sleepless in Seattle
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: dual

Extras Review: Another Columbia TriStar deep catalog offering where the feature presentation goes trailer-less. Instead, no less than five rib-ticklers from the studio's vaults are given the hard sale (including Hawn's award-winning debut in Cactus Flower).

Extras Grade: D+

 

Final Comments

Despite a good start and fleeting moments that properly showcase the talents of Peter Sellers and Goldie Hawn, There's a Girl in My Soup winds up being an inconsequential entry in both of their filmographies. For those thinking otherwise, Columbia TriStar's above-average re-mastering will taste just right.

 


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