Julian Cristoforou

Created by Peter Shaffer

"Would you like a macaroon?"

--Julian

Convinced that Belinda, his fun-loving American wife (Mia Farrow) is being unfaithful, Charles, a buttoned-up British financier hires a private eye (played by Topol) to track her through the streets of London. But the ensuing investigation nets surprising results for all of them, in The Public Eye, an odd little romantic comedy directed by Carol Reed and written by Peter Shaffer.

But JULIAN CRISTOFOROU, as played by Topol from Fiddler on the Roof, is like no private eye you've seen before -- he's all Meditteranean emotion and appetite, an impulsive bon vivant out to seize the day -- the exact opposite of his client. But Belinda, who soon spots him, just thinks of him as "a goofy little man in a white raincoat," and proceeds to lead him on a merry chase through the streets of London.

This is no lost classic, and it's not for everyone (Roger Ebert called it "dumb, dumb, dumb") but this whimsical character study offers plenty of charm for all you softies out there, and the fact that loose cannon Topol is about as far from the roscoe-spatting hard-boiled dick or dashing gentleman sleuth as you can get only adds to the fun.

UNDER OATH

Roger Ebert begs to differ.

FILM

  • THE PUBLIC EYE
    (aka "Follow Me")

    (1972, Universal Pictures)
    1 hour, 33 minutes
    Story and screenplay by Peter Shaffer
    Directed by Carol Reed
    Score by John Barry
    Starring Topol as JULIAN CRISTOFOROU
    with Mia Farrow, Michael Jayston

Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.


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