Good crazy comedies are few and far between these days. This one (disappointingly remade by Billy Wilder as Buddy Buddy in 1981) takes off nicely after about twenty minutes thanks to the solid presence of Ventura, an unwordy script, and a deceptively deadpan beginning. Ventura, a hired killer with one shooting already under his belt, takes a hotel room from which he plans a political assassination. Meanwhile, in the next room, the pain in the arse of the title attempts to hang himself. Ventura's calm exterior slowly shatters as the incompetent idiot slowly latches onto him; he ends up driving pregnant women to hospital, falling off ledges, getting drugged in a case of mistaken identity, looking for a garage distributing free plastic saints, and finally sharing a cell with the amiable idiot, the possessor of a mammoth persecution complex. Ventura's slow disintegration is a delight to watch, and Brel manages well at being extremely irritating.