Top critical review
Almost saved by Julie Andrews's secret talents
on November 2, 2003
And I don't mean her bared chest. S. O. B. was Blake Edwards's attempt to get his own back after the failure of his film DALING LILI over a decade previously: in this film, a director (Richard Mulligan) has a complete nervous breakdown after his film starrign his famously wholesome movie star wife (Julie Andrews) fails at the box office: he tries to recoup his losses by reshooting the film as a softporn fantasia with his wife baring her breasts.
This film was considered wildly funny satire at the time of its release but has aged less well than you might expect. The Lew Wasserman-style Hollywood Edwards mocks was already on its way out when this movie was made in 1981: it reflects the Hollywood of the 1970s much more than the blockbuster-driven Hollywood that was already taking its place. Most of the actors (particularly Robert Preston, Robert Vaughan, and Loretta Swit as a shrieking harpy of a gossip columnist) seem to be having the time of their lives. Julie Andrews isn't very good in her scene throwing an Oscar at Mulligan, and she may wear the most hideous clothes ever in this film, but she redeems not only her performance but almost the entire movie when Preston has to make her high to ensure she can do her breatbearing scene: she's really, really funny whooping it up.