King, Queen, Knave

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Probably the most unjustly underrated of all Skolimowski's films, a surreal black comedy - based on Nabokov's novel retailing a triangle situation, with puckish overtones of obsession and perversion, between a wealthy businessman, his luscious wife, and an orphaned boy - that pushes some of the satirical extravagances of Frank Tashlin and Jerry Lewis to their most logical and deathly conclusions. Hilarious, misanthropic and disturbing, the movie amply fulfils Tom Milne's description of it as 'the most Nabokovian film the cinema has thrown up to date'. Despite reservations about its hybrid nature as an English version of a West German production, it certainly warrants a look.

By: JR

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