Magic Christian, The (1969)

The Magic Christian (1969), directed by Joseph McGrath.

Another absurd, skit-based 1960s satirical freakout film. Shelve it with:

It's perhaps clearer in the book (not all the film skits make any sense) but the moral is: "Every man has his price". Peter Sellers expertly mugs as Sir Guy Grand, fabulously wealthy and eccentric, hauling Ringo Starr along for no good reason.

The satire is heavy handed even by the standards of the unsubtle genre. Still, if you know someone with a childish sense of humor who enjoys the prospect of the stupid and cruel practical jokes a billionaire could arrange: this might be a good gift.

A confession of childish sense of humor: we laughed until we cried at this one. Well, those were different days. My favorite bits:

In the final bit, businessmen dive for free money in a heated vat of blood, urine and manure.

Too many cameo parts to mention, including the pre-Monty Python John Cleese and Graham Chapman, who also get writing credits.

If the film is remembered at all, it's for some poster art of Raquel Welch as "Priestess of the Whip", managing a crew of naked female galley slaves.

The title has no meaning.

Happy score by Badfinger.

As usual, the Olive Films Blu-ray has no subtitles or extras, but the image is rather good. The old DVD had been cropped to 1.33; this is 1.77.