PHOTOBOOTHS IN MOVIES & TV

The Statue

Rod Amateau (U.K., 1971, 84 min.)

This comedy starring David Niven and John Cleese centers on Alex Bolt (Niven), a Nobel Prize-winning linguist. His neglected wife, a sculptor, creates an 18' tall nude statue of him for display in Grosvenor SquareŚand tells him he wasn't the model for a certain special part. Bolt then goes on a frantic search for the man whom his wife did use and employs a photobooth at an arcade to help himself out.

In the era before digital photography, Bolt didn't have too many options if he wanted to snap a photo of his privates without anyone else seeing it. The photobooth does the trick nicely. Seeing the prim and proper Niven self-consciously snap photos of himself while confused and disgusted kids nearby stare is pretty entertaining.

Notice the photobooth's modified curtain lowered to allow us to see Bolt as he does his thing, but a huge pain for anyone wanting to actually use the booth. Niven even bends the curtain rod getting dressed, though it's fixed in the next shot.

Thanks to Cassie and Esther for introducing me to the trailer for this film, which features this photobooth scene.

Contributed by Brian