The Family Jewels

Rated NR 100 minutes 1965

As if one Jerry Lewis wasn't enough, The Family Jewels offers no fewer than seven Jerrys. Fans of Lewis will like the film. Others should be advised to steer clear of any and all French film festivals. The plot revolves around nine-year-old Donna Peyton (Donna Butterworth), who stands to inherit 30 million dollars. The catch: Donna must pick a new daddy from her late father's six closest male relatives. Lewis spends most of the film playing family chauffeur Willard Woodward, whom Donna loves above all others. He also portrays snaggle-toothed gangster Bugs Peyton, hirsute sea captain James Peyton, flying fool Captain Eddie Peyton, cynical clown Everett Peyton, Holmes-like detective Skylock Peyton (whose Dr. Matson is corpulent Sebastian Cabot), and photographer Julius Peyton (a reprise of Lewis' Nutty Professor character Julius Kelp). Though fitfully amusing, The Family Jewels is too sloppily put together to completely satisfy anyone other than Lewis' most fervent fans. Best bits: the in-flight movie starring Anne Baxter, the marathon pool game, and Bugs Peyton's outrage at being called a rat fink.~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

Film Credits

Director: Jerry Lewis

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