review for The Statue on AllMovie

The Statue (1971)
by Craig Butler review

It's possible that someone other than young adolescent boys would find The Statue amusing, but unlikely. Making a movie about a man obsessed with finding his wife's suspected lover and who has no clue to go on other than a very precise rendering of the suspect's genitals is not the best idea to begin with. In order for this premise to work, the writer and director would need to have an inspired notion as to how to approach it -- perhaps as some kind of lunatic comedy about obsession, or one which uses the surface story to explore deeper sexual anxieties. Instead, the creative team involved with Statue has given it the smarmiest, most adolescent treatment possible, making it the cinematic equivalent of a dirty joke told by two drunks during an all-night bender. But it's not the tastelessness which offends so much as it is the total lack of imagination. Statue is a total and utter bore, the kind of film that forces one to start checking one's watch after the first five minutes. The film does at least have David Niven, who once again squanders his comedic talent in material that is shamefully far beneath his talents. Niven can't do anything to make Statue more than slightly bearable -- but when one considers what the experience would be like witjout him, one is enormously grateful.