Synopsis by Hans J. Wollstein
The very first film in this enduring series of Danish caper-comedies, Olsenbanden did little more than introduce the cast of characters: Egon Olsen (Ove Sprogøe), the brains behind the alternately brilliant or completely off-the-wall get-rich-quick schemes; Benny (Morten Grunwald), the energetic but addle-brained younger member of the team; and Kjeld (Poul Bungaard), the grown-up little fat boy, whose fear of wife Yvonne (Kirsten Walther) is always a threat to even the best-laid plans. And, of course, Yvonne herself: A lovable ding-bat whose entire life seems to be a never-ending preparation for a holiday in Spain. "Are we millionaires now," she often inquires, usually right before the police once again drag poor Egon off to the slammer. The characters weren't quite as well-defined this first time out but proved a potential that would ultimately lead to a legendary box-office sensation. In time, the "Olsen Gang" films would be re-made nearly scene for scene in both Norway and Sweden, and dubbed versions of the original anarchic Danish comedies would break all-time attendance records in, of all places, the communist governed German Democratic Republic.
gangster, going-straight, leader, prison, redemption