Times may have changed, but for years conversationalists who knew nothing about France except that french fries came from there always had a great fall back position: "You know, they worship Jerry Lewis movies." Cecil Adams of The Straight Dope analyzes the urban legend, while passing on some of his own notions regarding "highbrow critics (the only kind France has)".

When I was Paris once, I can remember reading the newspaper Le Figaro's review of "Allo Maman, C'est Moi Encore" (Hi Mom, It's Me Again better known as Look Who's Talking Too). The review began, as I recall, "What's more droll than a talking baby? Two of them!" Sheesh, that's more highbrow than Richard Roeper even! The Lewis libel is what is the novelist Gustave Flaubert called "a received idea," a bit of folk wisdom passed down uncritically from one ignoramus to another.

categories Features, Cinematical