The Honey Pot

1967

Action / Comedy / Crime

1
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 62%
IMDb Rating 7 10 1764

Synopsis


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Cast

Maggie Smith as Sarah Watkins
Capucine as Princess Dominique
Cliff Robertson as William McFly
Rex Harrison as Cecil Sheridan Fox
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
1.08 GB
1280*720
English
23.976 fps
2hr 12 min
P/S 1 / 1
2.23 GB
1920*1080
English
23.976 fps
2hr 12 min
P/S 4 / 3

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by BaronVonCount 9 / 10

Elegant intrigue in Venice

From the opening scene, with Rex Harrison's lead character watching a private performance of Ben Jonson's "Volpone"in the elegant, neoclassical surrounds of Venice's La Fenice, to the final scene amid the acqua alta in the Piazza San Marco, this sly murder mystery is pretty much note perfect. The script is drily witty, delivered by principally Harrison, Cliff Robertson, with Maggie Smith demonstrating that she was a first-rate comic actress even four decades ago, all played in the matchless surrounds of Venice. Capucine as the Princess, and Adolfo Celi as the police inspector are excellent in their smaller, supporting roles.

Reviewed by dglink 9 / 10

A Sly Fox

Loosely based on "Volpone," a play by Ben Johnson, Joseph L. Mankiewicz's literate, yet complex film, "The Honey Pot," is an often overlooked gem from the 1960's. Ensconced in his lavish Venetian palazzo, Cecil Fox devises an elaborately staged game to play on three of his former paramours. Hiring a handsome stage manager named McFly, he writes a letter to each woman telling her that he is on his death bed and she could be heiress to his estate. Needless to say, each arrives in Venice with an expensive gift and a desire to rekindle the fire with Fox. Each woman brings a time piece, and the theme of passing time is woven throughout the film.

The film was the second successful collaboration between Mankiewicz and Rex Harrison, the first producing Harrison's Oscar-nominated performance in "Cleopatra." Harrison is a sly delight as Fox, a devious, manipulative schemer, whose dreams of being a dancer send him flitting flamboyantly around his bed chamber; in keeping with the film's theme, he even cavorts to "The Dance of the Hours." Cliff Robertson is McFly, a man with a checkered past, who stages the deception with ambiguous motives of his own. The three objects of Fox's deceit are played by Susan Hayward, Capucine, and Edie Adams. Hayward's Mrs. Lone Star Crockett Sheridan is the most colorful, and her tough-talking Texan character is missed when she is off-screen. Capucine's Princess Dominque is properly cool and regal, and Adams's Merle McGill is crass and common. In a role that resembles her work in "The V.I.P's," Maggie Smith is the under-estimated brains among the group; as Sarah Watkins, nurse-companion to Mrs. Sheridan, Smith is described by Fox as "the bouncy one," and she is indeed.

"The Honey Pot" may be too slow and wordy for those nursed on Marvel Comics super heroes, but patient viewers have much to relish. Mankiewicz won Oscars for his biting screenplays for "All About Eve" and "A Letter to Three Wives," and also won nominations for writing "Skippy," "No Way Out," and "The Barefoot Contessa." His sharp and witty dialog is deliciously delivered by Harrison and Hayward in particular, who have the best lines; however, the entire cast, which includes four Oscar winners, does well, and each has his or her moments. Gianni Di Venanzo's well rendered cinematography of Venice and of the rich interiors of Fox's palace is colorful, and John Addison's score enhances the proceedings. Boasting excellent technical credits, a sterling cast, and a script and direction by Joseph L. Mankiewicz, "The Honey Pot" offers solid entertainment for discerning viewers and a few twists and surprises to keep everyone attentive until the end.

Reviewed by JohnHowardReid 6 / 10

150 minutes?

An over-talkative comedy-drama-murder mystery, disappointingly directed in a rather bland style by Joseph L. Mankiewicz. In fact, the movie lacks the very essential wit and flair that everyone – from producer Charles K. Feldman on down – expected that Mankiewicz would certainly bring to this venture. Solid performances from just about everyone in the cast – particularly Rex Harrison, Susan Hayward, Maggie Smith, Edie Adams and Capucine – plus the movie's A- 1 technical credits certainly help, but the movie seems far too ponderous and slow-moving – mostly because Mankiewicz has unwisely chosen to add dialogue of his own invention to that of Frederick Knott's stage play, "Mr. Fox of Venice", which was itself based on a novel by Thomas Sterling based on a play by Ben Jonson. Thus, The Honey Pot is awash with dialogue. If this were not off-putting enough, Mankiewicz has chosen to direct the movie mostly in super-boring, TV-style close-ups.

The above is my view of the 131 minutes version. At 150 minutes the movie would surely be unwatchable.

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