Victor Victoria (1982)

Director: Blake Edwards


Victor Victoria is the story about a woman pretending to be a man, pretending to be a woman. Victoria Grant (Julie Andrews) is an out of work singer, and is actually a starving artist, really starving. Her friend Carole (Toddy) Todd (Robert Preston) is a recently unemployed, gay cabaret singer. Toddy comes up with a plan to keep the two of them from living in the streets, Victoria must become Victor, a drag queen and the toast of Paris. Toddy teaches Victoria how to behave less like a woman and more like a man pretending to be a woman. Everything was going just fine with their charade, until Chicago tough guy King Marchand (James Garner) comes to one of the shows. King is immediately attracted to the beautiful Victoria, he can’t take his eyes off of her. When the number is finished, however, Victoria removes her wig to reveal Victor to the audience. King’s smile turned into something completely different once it finally dawns on him that Victoria is a man. King refuses to believe that he could be attracted to a man, so he sets out to prove that Victor is, in fact, a woman.


This is classic Blake Edwards, which basically means that it was very racy for the time, extremely tongue in cheek, and fabulously funny. Even in 1982 the gay world was pretty taboo to the average person, but Edwards managed to do a great job of making us feel both comfortable and uncomfortable about it. It’s really the first movie that I remember seeing that said it’s okay to be gay. This movie also had great costumes, stunning makeup, and a perfect soundtrack; in fact, we get a taste of 1930s Paris through the eyes of Edwards. This movie is a joy to watch! A great comedy with a lot of twists and turns.


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