Start The Revolution Without Me

  • 1970
  • Movie
  • PG
  • Comedy, War

This often hysterical farce starts like a house afire, then simply burns down. In 18th-century France, two sets of twin boys are born to different families--one aristocratic, one peasant--then confused by the attending physician. Determined to be at least half-right, the doctor switches one child in each pair. Time passes and the privileged boys, Pierre...read more

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This often hysterical farce starts like a house afire, then simply burns down. In 18th-century France, two sets of twin boys are born to different families--one aristocratic, one peasant--then confused by the attending physician. Determined to be at least half-right, the doctor switches

one child in each pair. Time passes and the privileged boys, Pierre (Donald Sutherland) and Philippe (Gene Wilder), grow into arrogant scoundrels, renowned for their willingness to run their rapiers through anyone who opposes them. When revolution appears imminent, King Louis XVI (Hugh Griffith)

calls on the noble swordsmen to help quell the rebels. Disguised as ordinary citizens, Pierre and Philippe go to Paris, where they are confused with the other set of brothers, Charles and Claude (Sutherland and Wilder, again), doltish peasants who have joined the rebellious forces. While very

funny throughout most of its running time, the picture eventually, almost inevitably, disintegrates into a "How the heck are we going to end this?" conclusion, not unlike BLAZING SADDLES' cop-out finale. Sutherland and Wilder are delightful, but it is Griffith as Louis XVI who steals the movie,

and the palace ball scene, in which he dresses as a chicken, is unforgettably funny. Indeed, what works best here are the sight gags, the funniest of which involves "The Man in the Iron Mask," who, when his armored suit is hit by a bullet, turns and runs in the opposite direction like a penny

arcade shooting-gallery figure.

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  • Rating: PG
  • Review: This often hysterical farce starts like a house afire, then simply burns down. In 18th-century France, two sets of twin boys are born to different families--one aristocratic, one peasant--then confused by the attending physician. Determined to be at least… (more)

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