Reviews

Margin For Error / A Royal Scandal

3

Cult TV fans may remember him as Mr Freeze in Batman. But director Otto Preminger was a clear-eyed architect of intelligent entertainment. Anti-Nazi comedy Margin For Error is so-so early Otto, with a Jewish New York policeman (Milton Berle) grudgingly assigned to guard a crooked, Jew-hating Nazi consul (Preminger himself). One year later, Otto hit the big time with smoky twist-noir Laura and landed A Royal Scandal after Ernst Lubitsch’s dodgy ticker ruled him out. Watchable but, despite Golden Era diva Talullah Bankhead as the feisty 18th Century Russian empress Catherine the Great – the tastiest thing about this tale of blue-blood sexual tomfoolery remains Vincent Prince’s ham-and-cheese cameo as the French Ambassador. As Philip Kemp points out on his pin-sharp sleeve notes, Lubitsch’s knack for innuendo might have made for a juicier tease.

 

Film Details

  • 15
  • UK Theatrical Release Date: March 31st 2008