5.2/10
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28 user 18 critic

Can Heironymus Merkin Ever Forget Mercy Humppe and Find True Happiness? (1969)

Heironymus Merkin (Anthony Newley) screens an autobiographical movie of his life, growth, and moral decay.

Director:

Anthony Newley
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1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Anthony Newley ... Heironymus Merkin
Joan Collins ... Polyester Poontang
Alexander Newley Alexander Newley ... Thaxted
Tara Newley Arkle ... Thumbelina (as Tara Newley)
Milton Berle ... Goodtime Eddie Filth
Connie Kreski Connie Kreski ... Mercy Humppe
George Jessel ... The Presence
Bruce Forsyth ... Uncle Limelight
Patricia Hayes Patricia Hayes ... Grandma
Stubby Kaye ... Fat Writer
Ronald Rubin Ronald Rubin ... Skinny Writer
Louis Negin ... Producer Peter
Tom Stern ... Producer Ron
Ronald Radd ... Critic Bentley
Rosalind Knight ... Critic Penelope
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Storyline

Hieronymus Merkin (Anthony Newley) has recently turned forty, and is in the midst of preparing a movie that details his life's history and development. Portraying himself as a marionette being controlled by an unseen puppet master, young Merkin is led away from the innocence of youth and into the waiting arms of one woman after another by Goodtime Eddie Filth (Milton Berle). With Filth's guidance, Merkin steadily transforms into a self-centered womanizer, save only for the longing he feels for his one lost love, Mercy Humppe (Connie Kreski). As the producers of his life story scream for him to come up with an ending, Merkin must look back and decide what, if anything, he's learned from his experiences. Written by Jean-Marc Rocher <rocher@fiberbit.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Heironymus Merkin, the most talented movie star who ever sang, danced and loved girls, girls, girls. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Musical

Certificate:

X | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 March 1970 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

.... Can Heironymus Merkin Ever Forget Mercy Humppe and Find True Happiness? See more »

Filming Locations:

Piccadilly, London, England, UK See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(1969 cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Heironymus Merkin (Anthony Newley) meets his dream girl Mercy Humppe (Connie Kreski), as she rides a merry-go-round, she tells him she knows who he is, calling him "Heironymus Codpiece". A codpiece is a flap or pouch attached to the front of the crotch of men's trousers over the genitals, while a merkin is a wig for covering the denuded pubic region. See more »

Goofs

The color of Thumbelina's ice-cream cone changes between brown and white and pink. See more »

Quotes

Hieronymous Merkin: Then the Eskimo and the Indian and the cannibal all rush over to the knight and they say, "Your dragon was here and he's looking to terrify you a great deal." And the knight sits there, and he laughs, and he laughs, and he laughs. The moral of the story is, once you understand your own dragon, you don't have to be afraid anymore. See what I mean?
See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no opening credits. All credits come at the end. The actors take a bow on a custom-made, pastel-painted, portable stage on a beach as their names are credited in jagged, psychedelic print. See more »

Alternate Versions

There is both an R-rated and an X-rated version. The R-rated version removes a few seconds of the sex scene with Mercy Humppe following the carousel sequence and tones down the suggestiveness of the "Princess and the Donkey" sequence. The X-rated version contains all the footage cut for the R version. See more »

Connections

References Moulin Rouge (1952) See more »

Soundtracks

On the Boards
(uncredited)
Performed by Bruce Forsyth
Music by Anthony Newley
Lyrics by Herbert Kretzmer
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Impossible to ignore this traffic accident of a picture
22 May 2017 | by MOscarbradleySee all my reviews

The title alone was enough to kill it dead in the water but if you got past that and made it into the few cinemas that showed it then the first ten minutes might have finished you off but this hugely self-indulgent picture is actually worth sticking around for. Okay, the gags are terrible and Newley, who directed it, co-wrote it, composed the music and plays the lead is no Orson Welles but there is a surfeit of imagination at work here and presuming it is mostly autobiographical, (his wife, Joan Collins, and children play his wife and children), few artists, and Newley surely is that, have ever been so self-critical in public; it's as if he wants us to hate him.

Fellini, of course, is the most obvious object of his affections, (he even gets a name-check), which probably riled the critics the most. How dare he think he could remake "8 1/2" and as a musical comedy, they probably screamed, and needless to say the film was not just a gigantic flop, both critically and commercially, but often figures in lists of the worst films ever made. It's certainly not always an easy watch; like a traffic accident it's very hard to look at what's happened yet impossible to look away. It's also impossible to ignore.


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