SECOND TIME LUCKY
Second Time Lucky is a film that is too stupid to consider taking its theological implications seriously. What is more annoying is the ill-thought out premise and the gross inconsistencies and illogicities that keep pricking their heads throughout the film like how the script has Adam and Eve ignorant of their past selves in each era they are incarnated in, fair enough, but will then blatantly ignore this whenever it suits a particular part of the story. Or how it will frequently have Eve fully conversant with her new surroundings yet Adam totally confused. The first three sequences, set in Eden, Rome and Allied France are beset by some of the most hideous innuendos the sights of Jon Gadsby lecturing Roger Wilson as to how his erection is the sign of temptation or Robert Helpmanns drag-queen camping as The Devil are almost unwatchably embarrassing. However, in the subsequent sequences the story starts to incredibly enough take itself seriously, winding up to a dreadfully sincere homily on true love. Although the credibility of such is thrown away by such prize moments as when Diane Franklin bares her breasts as targets for her firing squad. Michael Anderson directs with his customary leadenness, which only makes all the innuendo and smutty jokes flop like limp balloons.
Considering the degree to which Diane Franklin substantially displays her naked body throughout and the amount of sexual innuendo, it is surprising that Second Time Lucky was only released with a PG certificate in many countries. The one plus is the New Zealand location photography (although a sheep station fails to make a convincing stand-in for Occupied France). It is interesting how the natural landscape of New Zealand seems to represent the untouched, unspoiled Eden in the early 1980s, the Bo Derek project Eve and That Damned Apple was also projected to come to NZ to shoot, although this failed to go ahead.
Michael Andersons other genre films include an adaptation of George Orwells 1984 (1956); The Shoes of the Fisherman (1968), a political thriller concerning a near-future Pope; Doc Savage, The Man of Bronze (1975), based on the pulp hero; the dystopian sf film Logans Run (1976); the killer whale film Orca (1977); the psycho-thriller Dominique (1978); the tv mini-series adaptation of Ray Bradburys The Martian Chronicles (1980); the thriller Bells/Murder by Phone/The Calling (1981) about killer telephone calls; the John Varley time travel film Millennium (1989); the tv movie remake of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (1997); and The New Adventures of Pinocchio (1999).
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