A Fish Called Wanda 1988

Critics score:
93 / 100

Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes

Dave Kehr, Chicago Tribune: The movie's basic joke holds that the overbearing, unselfconscious Americans will do anything and say anything (and usually as loudly as possible), while the timorous British are nearly too polite to breathe. Read more

Sheila Benson, Los Angeles Times: Low comedy at high speed, it pretends to be a caper movie about a smooth London jewel heist and its infinitely complex aftermath. Actually, it's a smart farce about ingrained cultural differences. Read more

Jay Boyar, Orlando Sentinel: Somehow, the movie manages to do the impossible: It makes John Cleese less than hilarious. Read more

Desmond Ryan, Philadelphia Inquirer: Perhaps the most unusual aspect of what is surely the year's most original and daring comedy is that John Cleese is not the funniest performer in it. Believe it or not, that honor goes to none other than the usually somber Kevin Kline. Read more

Vincent Canby, New York Times: It's not easy to describe the movie's accumulating dimness or to understand what went wrong. Read more

Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader: Like many of the best English comedies, much of the humor here is based on character, good-natured high spirits, and fairly uninhibited vulgarity. Read more

James Berardinelli, ReelViews: When it comes to comedians, everyone has their favorite. Mine is John Cleese. Read more

Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times: The funniest movie I have seen in a long time. Read more

Richard Schickel, TIME Magazine: Wanda defies gravity, in both senses of the word, and redefines a great comic tradition. Read more

Stephen Garrett, Time Out: There's nothing deep, nothing ground-breaking, but it's a never-dull, tightly scripted yarn with some very funny gags. Read more

Variety Staff, Variety: Though it is less tasteless, irreverent and satirical than the Python pics, film still is wacky and occasionally outrageous in its own, distinctly British way. Read more

Desson Thomson, Washington Post: It'll keep you amused enough to sit still and even remember it fondly. But it seems a light day's fishing for Messers Cleese and Palin. Read more

Rita Kempley, Washington Post: It's a deliciously dishy comedy, but like sushi an acquired taste. Read more