I Killed Einstein, Gentlemen (1970)

I KILLED EINSTEIN, GENTLEMEN (1970)
aka Zabil jsem Einsteina, panove
Article 3905 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 4-13-2012
Posting Date: 4-23-2012
Directed by Oldrich Lipsky
Featuring Jiri Sovak, Jana Brejchova, Lubomir Lipsky
Country: Czechoslovakia
What it is: Science fiction comedy

When a new bomb causes women to grow beards, a desperate government decides to fix the problem by having the inventor of a time machine go back into time and assassinate Albert Einstein, the father of modern physics, thus preventing the development of the bomb. However, meddling with history isn’t always easy, and has its side effects…

What we have here is a variation on the old idea of going back in time and assassinating Hitler before he became a dictator, and the movie does give the original concept some lip service in a rather amusing scene. The movie opens with a scene which looks for all the world like two men kissing, but you’ll quickly find that that’s not what you’re really seeing. However, it is a great way to catch your attention and it drew me into a movie that, at least for the first half, is one of the funniest comedies I’ve seen in a long time; I found myself laughing out loud quite a few times during this part. It loses a bit of steam in the second half, mostly due to the fact that the addition of a resistance group that is trying to prevent the assassination of Einstein complicates the plot enough that you’re distracted from the humor by trying to figure out who everybody is and what is going on. Still, there’s a few clever moments in the second half as well, and the style of direction makes me wonder if Terry Gilliam might have seen this movie. Despite the weaker second half, I still think the movie is a creative and interesting comedy overall, and I highly recommend it .

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