A new case, same diamond! When the priceless jewel, The Pink Panther, is stolen from a high-tech national museum, only one man can solve the crime. Returning once again is Inspector Jacques Clouseau (Peter Sellers), but unfortunately, the Inspector has seen better days. Clouseau is reintroduced to the audience while he speaks to a busker playing without a permit. While he questions the man, a robbery occurs right under the Inspector’s nose, pushing his Chief (Herbert Lom) to remove Jacques Clouseau from all active duty!
However, when the word gets out the Pink Panther diamond has been stolen from the National Museum located in Lugash, the Shah demands the assistance of Inspector Clouseau. While the Chief is annoyed and dislikes Clouseau, he has no choice but to reinstate him and send him on his way. Can Inspector Jacques Clouseau use his detective wits, skills, and knowledge to recover the diamond and reveal who is behind this ultimate crime?
For those who are not aware, Return of the Pink Panther serves as a sequel to the original film The Pink Panther from 1963. Peter Sellers as Inspector Jacques Clouseau is once again fantastic. His comic timing with dialogue and facial expressions is admirable and hilarious. Naturally, some of the gags and jokes here may seem a little repetitive or even painful to watch, but I still couldn’t help myself from having many chuckles while viewing this film, and it’s all thanks to actor Peter Sellers who truly owns this role.
While I enjoyed watching the lead performance by Peter Sellers, the plot and pacing certainly have moments that are quite strong and, other times, duller and slower. Multiple side characters also have a fair amount of screen time, including Sir Charles Litton (Christopher Plummer). Litton is an ex-thief and a prime suspect who begins an investigation to clear his name. While I always enjoy a good performance by Christopher Plummer, the film isn’t as exciting, fun or fast-paced when Peter Sellers is absent from the screen. Nevertheless, the film is still packed with outrageous comedic moments and an unpredictable mystery.
Overall, as a sequel, this is a fun and entertaining film. Peter Sellers is fantastic as Inspector Jacques Clouseau and has excellent comedic timing and perfectly timed facial expressions. The mystery and plot, along with its gags, may seem slightly predictable at times, but it still manages to deliver solid entertainment and a good quantity of laughs. Whenever Peter Sellers is absent from the screen, the film certainly slows down in all areas and even feels a tad dull, but I can’t deny that there is lots to enjoy in this classic film, and I cannot wait to see the next instalment within this franchise.