Written by: Michael Den Boer on May 18th, 2008
Theatrical Release Date: Italy, June 23rd, 1967
Alternate Title: Lucky, el intrépido
Approximate running time: 89 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Widescreen
Director: Jesus Franco
Writers: Julio Buchs, Remigio Del Grosso, Jesus Franco, José Luis Martínez Mollá
Cinematograper: Fulvio Testi
Composer: Bruno Nicolai
Cast: Ray Danton, Barbara Bold, Dante Posani, Dieter Eppler, María Luisa Ponte, Rosalba Neri, Beba Loncar, Teresa Gimpera, Marcelo Arroita-Jáuregui, Jesus Franco
Synopsis: A secret agent named Lucky; the Inscrutable while in Europe discovers a counterfeiting plot in the country of Albania.
After the success of the James Bonds films an influx of Spy knockoffs would follow in its wake throughout the 1960’s. Visually Lucky, the Inscrutable borrows just as much from James Bond as it does from fumetti’s (Italian comic books). Lucky, the Inscrutable was directed by Jess Franco and stylistically the film doesn’t feature the elements one would expect while watching a Jess Franco film. Lucky, the Inscrutable looks and feels like a film that was made by a director for hire. That is not to say that it is totally devoid of Franco like touches. There is an ample amount of humor in this film that is undeniably Jess Franco.
The plot features many colorful villains and a collection of beautiful ladies. Some of things that happen throughout the film seem hokey but then this may be the filmmakers’ original intention. Even the films anticlimactic ending fails perfectly in line with everything that precedes it. The action sequences are good but could have been more convincing. Lucky, the Inscrutable fails as film if you view just as an a typical spy film. Part of its charm is its irreverent take on the spy genre.
In the lead role of Lucky, the Inscrutable is Ray Danton an actor who had previous starred in these spy films The Spy Who Went into Hell and Secret Agent Super Dragon. Two interesting things about the character Lucky, the Inscrutable is his multilingual skills and how he is recognized by everyone he encounters even when in disguise. Ray Danton is wooden and at best anything he contributes to the film that stand outs is most likely due to Franco’s direction. Wooden uninspired performances are nothing new to many international co-productions made in the 1960’s since most if not all performers’ where dubbed since the cast usually is made of different languages’ being spoken on the set.
In a minor and yet unforgettable role is actress Rosalba Neri whose character is Yaka an Albanian general. Neri is only in handful of scenes including the film’s most memorable scene where she discovers that she forgot to put her pants on after assembling her soldiers to find Lucky, the Inscrutable who escaped after seducing her the night before. Lucky, the Inscrutable would mark the first time that actress Rosalba Neri and composer Bruno Nicolai working with director Jess Franco. Bruno Nicolai’s composes yet another memorable score for Lucky, the Inscrutable that ranks amongst his best work as a composer.
Ultimately Lucky, the Inscrutable is an amusing satire on the Spy films of the 1960’s.