What? (1972)

R   |    |  Comedy

What? (1972) Poster

During her Italian vacation, a young and beautiful American tourist finds herself as a guest in a coastal villa inhabited by a bunch of odd people.


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13 November 1999 | iF....
| Psychedelic
What? Is a psychedelic fairy tale about an American hippie who wanders into the decadent environment of a seaside villa in Italy after nearly being raped while hitchhiking. She is given a room and, within moments, begins undressing under the peeping eye of a perverted former pimp played by Marcelo Mastroianni, which causes the hippie girl to embark on a mysterious sexual journey. Things are, at the very least, strange within the villa. One inhabitant constantly groans in his room; a mysterious voyeur watches the girl through a hole in her wall; two women wander through the terrace both wearing fancy hats but only one wearing clothes; and of course Mosquito played by the man himself, Roman Polanski. A day after the girl stays in the house, she starts believing she is having déjà vu, each sexual fantasy after the next haunt her over and over again.

I certainly don't consider this to be one of Polanski's best. Due to the content, it is rather sad to see a great actor like Mastroianni in such a poorly developed film like this. Polanski, a filmmaker that previously showed the world he could make great films then decides to make such a poor film as this. Then again this is a hippie film, so for the times I guess it was ok. Nothing impressive to say the least, but since I'm a Polanski fan; lets just say I was just curious to see what he had to offer.

Critic Reviews


Release Date:

3 October 1973


English, Italian, French

Country of Origin

Italy, France, West Germany

Filming Locations


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