The Mouse on the Moon Film Details
Overview: A tiny country persuades the Americans and Soviets that they’re starting a space program, when they really just want some money for new plumbing.
Tagline: Stop shooting at our moon!
Review: “The Mouse That Roared” put a comedic spin on the United States’ policy of rebuilding those countries it has beaten in war. Here in the sequel, the subject is the space race and the international contest concerning putting a man on the moon. As in the original film, the small duchy of Grand Fenwick is faltering financially and needs the aid of other countries to make ends meet. (It never occurs to anyone to sell off some of the jewels dripping off their ruler, The Grand Duchess!) The Prime Minister (Moody) concocts a scheme to trick the U.S. into providing funds for rocket research which he actually intends to use for installing indoor plumbing at the castle (due to his fondness for long baths which, initially, don’t include hot water!) Once the U.S. coughs up some money, the U.S.S.R., not to be outdone, provides Grand Fenwick with a rocket, though neither country believes that any true result will come of their deeds. When Moody’s son Cribbins comes back home from school, he decides to actually give space travel a go, with the help of a grandfatherly professor (Kossoff.) Meanwhile, the dotty Duchess (Rutherford) engages in various pageantry and the duchy’s youth live as protesting Beatniks (!) led by Richie. Much of this satire will be lost to a newer generation since so much has changed since the time it was made. This was filmed before the Kennedy assassination and the breaking of many social and sexual taboos across the world. If anything, it presents a sort of periodic time capsule of the socio political climate of the day. Director Lester shows signs of the rather subtle slapstick and physical comedy that he would insert into many of his later films. Top-billed Rutherford (right at the height of her popularity in the Miss Marple films) is given almost nothing to do. Always engaging to watch, she nonetheless has very little of interest to work with and is off screen for much of the picture. Moody gives a solid and energetic performance, though his biggest hit would follow in a few years with “Oliver!” Cribbins is only moderately entertaining and lacks the charisma to really grab attention. The ever-exasperated Thomas shows up briefly as a U.K. spy and adds some sparkle to the proceedings. Richie has a thankless, idiotic role and an even more thankless wardrobe. It’s worth a look for fans of Moody, Lester and films concerning The Cold War and earlier U.S. mores, but doesn’t really succeed as a full-on comedy. Most of the humor is very dry and spotty. Fans of physical comedy may find more to laugh at during the various mishaps of the cast. For many folks, the absence of Peter Sellers (star of the original film in three separate roles) relegates this to a misfire. It’s not a bad little film, it’s just not a great one.
Country: United Kingdom
Language: English, Russian
Duration: 82 min
Genre: Comedy, Romance, Sci-Fi
Also known as: Musen på månen,Soarecele pe luna,The Mouse on the Moon,Mani sulla luna,O Rato na Lua,Мышь на Луне,Auch die Kleinen wollen nach oben,Fut i raketten,La souris sur la lune,El ratón en la luna,Maasta se pienikin ponnistaa,Egér a Holdon,Um rato em órbita,Mysz na księżycu,Un ratón en la luna,Ay’a Seyahat,To pontiki sto feggari