Copacabana Palace

Preview this Postsrc=”” alt=”Copacabana Palace poster” width=”232″ height=”325″ />

Aka Girl Game
Italy / France / Brazil
An Ital-Victoria Film, France Cinéma Production (Paris) & Consorcio Paulista de Coproduçao (Sâo Paulo) production
Director: Steno
Story: Thalma de Oliviera, Jorge Dória, Henrique Pongetti, Silveira Sampaio, Luciano Vincenzoni
Screenplay: Luciano Vincenzoni, Sergio Amidei
Cinematogrpahy: Massimo Dallamano
Music: Gianni Ferrio
Art director: Wallace Simonsen
Editor: Pierino Massenzi
Original release date: 04/11/1962
Original running time: 90 mins
International release information: In Francia: Copacabana Palace (1964 – 122””) – In Usa: Girl Game (1968 – 90””)
Cast: Sylva Koscina (Ines), Walter Chiari (Ugo), Mylène Demongeot (Zina von Raunacher), Paolo Ferrari (De Fonseca), Gloria Paul (Michelle), Raymond Bussières, Claude Rich (Buby von Raunacher), Franco Fabrizi, Jaime Aragon, Ruggero Baldi, Denise Barreto, Ciro Bassini, Luiz Bonfá (Himself), Laura Brown, Tônia Carrero (Herself), José Costa, Terri Dean, Francis De Wolff, Celso Faria, Cyl Farney, Severino Filho (Os Cariocas (group singing “Só Danço Samba”)), Emmanoel Furtado (Os Cariocas (group singing “Só Danço Samba”)), João Gilberto (Himself), Irina Greco, John Herbert, Antonio Carlos Jobim (Himself), Fernando Mariz, Dóris Monteiro, Teresa Nakad, Margit Olilson, Carlos Perry, Jorge Quartarone (Os Cariocas (group singing “Só Danço Samba”)), Luiz Roberto (Os Cariocas (group singing “Só Danço Samba”)), Karin Rodrigues, Milton Rodríguez, Milton Viana, Paulo Gracindo (uncredited)

Plot: A stellar international cast compensates somewhat for the rambling plotlessness of The Girl Game. The film takes place during Carnival Time in Rio De Janeiro. As unconfined joy wafts its way through the streets, the lives of several fabulously wealthy visitors and a group of voluptuous stewardesses intersect, sometimes with startling results. Sylvia Koscina and Mylene Demongeot are among the visual delights of this garish romp. Originally released at 125 minutes, The Girl Game (also known as Copacabana Palace and The Saga of the Flying Hostesses) was pared down to 90 minutes for its play-off dates. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

Comments: Fun sounding romp with caper elements, I believe. Steno was one of the key comedy directors of the time, and Walter Chiari a popular light lead, so this was never going to be particularly serious. A few interesting names involved: the script is by Luciano Vicenzoni, who””d go on to collaborate with Sergio Leone and write several great spaghetti westerns. Gloria Paul, meanwhile, was an English dancer who went on to star in several spy films. Also in the credits is British character actor Francis De Wolff in, I think, his only Euro credit? There””s an English version of this floating around.

The IMDB says: A French/Italian/Brazilian co-production, THE GIRL GAME (as my English-dubbed, letterboxed VHS copy is titled) would be an average Euro lighthearted romance-caper film were it not for the Brazilian element in the mix–great locations, great music by Jobim and Bonfa, many Brazilian elements throughout the films, and if I””m not mistaken even cameos from Antonio Carlos Jobim, Luis Bonfa, and Joao Gilberto (one of the characters pretends to be talking to Jobim on the phone and makes plans to meet him and his “friends” Luis and Joao–later in the film we see the girls with guys serenading them who look and sound like the real musicians, but I thought it was just actors shown in medium shots pretending to be them, until I saw the three actually listed in the cast list!!!). We even get two songs sung by Norma Bengell! While the film itself is a pleasant time-killer, the bossa nova content makes it a fascinating document–an artifact from that brief period in the early 1960s when the romanticized Brazil of song and legend was THE place to be, the place to fantasize being. Anyone with any interest in this period should try to find a copy. Fans of dubbed Euro 60s co-productions will also like the film, but what makes it special is the bossa nova content (IMDB)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *