Film & Water #132 – One, Two, Three


Episode 132: ONE, TWO, THREE

Tim Wallace returns to the show to discuss Billy Wilder's riotous Cold War comedy ONE, TWO, THREE, starring James Cagney!

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9 responses to “Film & Water #132 – One, Two, Three

  1. I have to admit, I’m not up on my Cagney films. This is one I’ve never heard of, but if I see it on TCM, I will definitely set the DVR.

    By the time you get to the late 60s you have Hogan’s Heroes lampooning the Nazis and Hitler, and of course The Producers. Maybe this movie helped break that ice a little?


  2. I tracked this one down years ago and was only able to find it at the library on VHS. I mostly recall the frenetic pacing and the rapid-fire dialogue. Another good Cold War comedy that you may want to consider for a future F&W is Norman Jewison’s “The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming” starring Carl Reiner, Eva Marie Saint, Alan Arkin, Jonathan Winters, & a metric ton of the top character actors of the era. Like One, Two, Three it showcases the absurdity of the era’s politics. Will we live long enough to see someone parody today’s politics?

    Another one I’d recommend is Woody Allen’s “Don’t Drink the Water” which is about a typical American family trapped in an embassy behind the Iron Curtain. The 1960s film with Jackie Gleason is pretty bad. but Woody remade it as a 1994 TV movie with Michael J. Fox, Mayim Bialek, & Dom DeLuise.

  3. Not only had I not seen this, I had never heard of it!

    I grew up on Cagney’s gangster films so always like seeing him in something different. This sounds like a blast, so off I go to hunt it down.

    As for other screwball comedies, do you like What’s Up Doc? One of my faves!!

    And I am amazed that Buckholz could raise Cagneys ire that much. After all, I don’t call it The Magnificent Seven. I call it ‘The Magnificent Six, and hey there’s Horst Buckholz’.

  4. It is readily apparent that you have not met me and my wife! We love this movie and quote it often! One of our “party tricks” when our daughter was a toddler was to have her say, “Put your pants on, Spartacus!” When our friend Joe told us that he had been cast in “Bridge of Spies,” we practically forced him to watch “One, Two, Three,” as research, after we explained, and acted out, the plot! It gets better with more in-depth knowledge of Cagney’s film-ography. Speaking of Cagney as a comic actor, check out “The Bride Came C.O.D.”

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