30 May 2010 | secondtake
Breathtaking Tokyo 1966, and Breathtaking Cary Grant, Last Film
Walk Don't Run (1966)
In my book, Cary Grant can do no wrong, and he absolutely makes this movie. It's a bit of a 1960s farce, and is maybe exactly what everyone was reacting against with the shift in movies around this time to greater realism and pertinence. This has neither!
But that's okay, it has beauty (the sets, architecture, and widescreen filming are all really fabulous) and innocence, which is weird to remember. Even sweet romances from our time, like Sleepless in Seattle, don't have the same pure innocence of this, which I think is genuine in its own way. The scene is mid-60s Tokyo, which is hard to beat for interest (and great cars). The plot? Oh, I'm not sure it actually has one that matters, except boy meets girl. It's mostly like a super high class situation comedy, and the comedy is more important than the situation.
And more important than both is Cary Grant, who is in great form. Yes, Jim Hutton is there (and he's fine but forgettable) as well as the female lead, Samantha Eggar (who is not as fine, but is fine anyway, and also forgettable). But then there is Cary Grant. There are even some odd gay gaze moments, where Grant, and the camera, check out the legs or body of a man (Grant, though married, was also gay, it appears). If you catch it it's almost shocking, but perhaps the audience was so innocent, as well, it was thought of as simply funny.
So: drop Cary Grant beautifully in Tokyo and create a nonsensical series of little gags, and you have it. And it's Grant's last film.