The Countess of Hong Kong
|German title||The Countess of Hong Kong|
|Original title||A Countess from Hong Kong|
|Country of production||United Kingdom|
|Age rating||FSK 16|
The Countess of Hong Kong (original title A Countess from Hong Kong ) is a British comedy from 1967 . It was the last film and at the same time the only color film by Charles Chaplin , he directed, wrote the screenplay and appeared in a small supporting role as a ship steward (minute 41:30).
The Russian Countess Natascha works as a prostitute in Hong Kong after her family had to flee from the communists from Russia and became impoverished in China. One day she and two friends accompany the American diplomat and oil billionaire heir Ogden Mears to a party in Hong Kong. Then she sneaks into the ship's cabin of the drunken Mears to travel to America as a stowaway and leave her old life behind. During the trip, Natascha causes a lot of fuss because Odgen and his friend Harvey have to hide them first from the occupation and later from the American immigration authorities. The diplomat also falls in love with her, but he has a wife in Hawaii who he wants to divorce. After arriving in America, he has to decide whether he wants to stay with Natascha (which, however, would ruin his career), or whether he wants to return with his wife first in order to keep appearances in public for the time being. He decides for Natascha.
The Countess of Hong Kong was Charlie Chaplin's last film and also his first color film. He shot the entire film at Pinewood Studios near London. Chaplin had his first idea for the film back in 1931 on a trip to Shanghai and initially wanted to film the story around 1940 with his then wife Paulette Goddard in Loren's role. For the second time after his 1923 drama The Nights of a Beautiful Woman , director Chaplin left the lead roles to other actors. However, the collaboration between Marlon Brando and Chaplin was rather difficult, as Chaplin showed his actors how to make their appearances and gave them little leeway of their own. Brando found this experience negative. Tippi Hedren was also disappointed because she had actually expected a bigger role. Three years after her break with Alfred Hitchcock on the set of Marnie , this was her first engagement in a film. Not only does Chaplin appear briefly in the film as an old ship steward, his daughters Geraldine , Josephine and Victoria also complete cameos .
|role||actor||German Dubbing voice|
|Odgen Mears||Marlon Brando||Rainer Brandt|
|Natasha||Sophia Loren||Marion Degler|
|Harvey||Sydney Chaplin||Heinz Petruo|
|Martha Mears||Tippi Hedren||Marianne Prenzel|
|Butler Hudson||Patrick Cargill||Heinz Spitzner|
|captain||John Paul||Carl Ackermann|
|Mr. Clark||Oliver Johnston||Knut Hartwig|
|Miss Gaulswallow||Margaret Rutherford||Ursula War|
|Lady at the dance||Geraldine Chaplin||Traudel Haas|
The film was rather disappointing commercially, it barely earned its budget of around 3.5 million US dollars. The song This Is My Song , written by Charlie Chaplin and which was part of the film's soundtrack, became a sales hit. In the version by Petula Clark , it reached high positions in the charts in numerous countries.
Although Charlie Chaplin showed himself to be very pleased with his latest film, it was largely negatively received by film critics as one of his weakest works. In the meantime, the comedy has mostly received a mixed reception.
"Chaplin's last film is a rather viscous romance in a leisurely-comical style whose ideas don't really ignite."
“All sorts of excitement and pseudo-psychic drama make the conventionally told 'romantic comedy' not very entertaining. Even the star line-up does not raise the film from the average. "
“A mature, wistful and quiet old work about lost illusions. There is some slapstick about Sophia's brassiere and Patrick Cargill as Brando's butler, who has to play the Loren's husband for a while. "
- The-Fan.net The Countess of Hong Kong
- A Countess from Hong Kong in the Internet Movie Database (English)
- Entry in the German online film database
- The Countess of Hong Kong. In: synchronkartei.de. German dubbing file , accessed on August 23, 2020 .
- The Countess of Hong Kong. In: Lexicon of International Films . Film service , accessed March 2, 2017 .
- Evangelischer Presseverband München, Review No. 69/1967
- "The Countess of Hong Kong" at Kino.de