One, Two, Three

Billy Wilder's Explosive New Comedy

115 min     7.557     1961     USA


C.R. MacNamara will do anything to get a promotion within the Coca-Cola company, including looking after boss W.P. Hazeltine's rebellious teenage daughter, Scarlett. When Scarlett visits Berlin, where C.R. is stationed, she reveals that she is married to a communist named Otto Piffl -- and C.R. recognizes that Otto's anti-establishment stance will clash with his boss's own political views, possibly jeopardizing his promotion.


John Chard wrote:
Amazing Cagney performance in a film that has no resonance now. C.R. MacNamara is the head of Coca-Cola's bottling interests in Germany, he is a forceful man who wants to be all that he can be. He hopes to be the head of European operations for the company and is well on his way until the teenage daughter of Coca-Cola big wig Wendell P. Hazeltine shows up and he is asked to baby-sit her for a two week trip thru the continent. I wish I could have been around to watch this on its release in 1961, for I'm sure I would of laughed my head off at the relevant jokes of the time. Full of communist bluster dialogue and jokes in keeping with the times, One, Two, Three has all the trademarks of a classic Billy Wilder/I.A.L. Diamond picture. Yet viewing it now, one finds that the jokes are tired and weary, and although the frenetic pace of the film is incredible {it really is like a scattergun exploding upon the viewers senses}, the film is something of an archaic oddity. Boasting a quite brilliant performance from James Cagney, the picture is never less than watchable, but the advent of time means the film is stuck firmly in 1961, regardless of the fine work from lead man and director alike. 6/10