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Hotel Sahara
movies, Comedy

1954 | 4:3 | Black & White | Quality: Excellent

Yvonne De Carlo

Peter Ustinov


The beautiful Hotel Sahara is a comfortable desert oasis for all who have the fortune to stay there. There's just one problem - WW2 rages in the desert, and the hotel is in just the right spot that it changes sides depending on how the battle is going that week! The Italians move out as the British move in, then out as the Germans move in, then out as the French move in then out again. Yvonne DeCarlo and Peter Ustanov run the hotel, and as they desperately try to survive each ordeal, De Carlo changes her personality, her wardrobe, and her musical numbers to fit whoever the current occupiers happen to be. Hilarity ensues when all sides converge on the hotel all at once. The final moments of Hotel Sahara creep into a more serious tone but Director Ken Annakin manages to end on a great sight gag.

HOTEL SAHARA is a British black and white wartime farce set in North Africa during the Second World War. The two main cast members are a youthful Peter Ustinov and an ever-gorgeous Yvonne De Carlo. They play the exasperated proprietors of a hotel who have to change their attitudes and allegiances every time a new squad of soldiers shows up, because due to their important position in the desert they're constantly visited by the Germans, Italians, British, and French. Although this is the kind of film which feels very dated to modern audiences, it reminded me a little of 'ALLO 'ALLO and it has the same sense of anything-goes fun. The solid supporting cast, including Bill Owen and Roland Culver, also helps to increase the enjoyment factor.

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