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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

The Brass Bottle (1964)



Reviews and Comments

Is there a more amiable family film star than Burl Ives, who isn't even famous for his acting but rather his singing? Ives plays a Genie in this light comedy (which, curiously, co-stars Barbara Eden as a mortal human). Tony Randall is the unfortunate soul who runs across Ives' bottle. For freeing him, The Genie insists and persists in repaying Randall the favor, but every act of magic only makes Randall's life worse. Suddenly, Randall finds himself explaining his apartment's slinky dancing girls and Arabian decor to his love's crotchety father.

With all due respect to Randall's comic talents, I feel he missed a golden opportunity. John Cleese, a master at portraying escalating desperation, would have done wonders with this kind of role. Randall, however, never builds up the necessary energy.

Yet there are some funny moments to be had here, and the film makes for an entertaining, if forgettable, family show.