In THE GEISHA BOY, Jerry Lewis provides a performance with equal shades of subtlety and comic brilliance. The colourful backdrop of Japan is a treat to see, and the supporting cast is equally fine.
Small-time magician Gilbert "The Great" Wooley (Jerry Lewis) and his rabbit Harry are part of a USO tour of Japan, but the visit takes an unexpected turn when Harry catches the attention of a shy little orphaned Japanese boy and his concerned aunt. Gilbert is the only one who seems to draw the boy out of his sorrows, and pretty soon a romance has blossomed with Aunt Kimi (Nobu McCarthy), too. But will Gilbert be able to leave everything in order to be with them?
THE GEISHA BOY allowed Jerry Lewis the opportunity to play some dramatic material; his scenes with Robert Hirano (as the little Mitsuo Watanabe) are adorable. This film also marked the screen debut of Suzanne Pleshette; she plays an army sergeant who also harbours an infatuation for Gilbert. The cast also features Sessue Hayakawa and Marie McDonald. The music score by Walter Scharf is lovely and the opening titles are a treat in themselves. Keep an eye out for some hilarious references to "The Bridge on the River Kwai", "Rear Window", the Paramount logo, and a dubbed Bob Hope!
For anyone who loves a heart-warming family comedy, THE GEISHA BOY is the perfect choice. It's currently available on DVD in the United Kingdom and Australia, so hopefully an American release shouldn't be too far away.