For the thousands of you out there who just can't get over how funny it is when a man puts on a dress, here's "La Cage aux Folles 3: The Wedding," yet another in the French series in which a man puts on a dress.
That man is Albin (Michel Serrault), who also squeals like a pig on a trapeze, warbles like a songbird and swings his hips like Marilyn Monroe. Albin is the star performer at La Cage aux Folles, a drag nightclub in St. Tropez; his lover Renato (an elegant but enervated Ugo Tognazzi) manages the club and keeps track of finances, which are, alas, not good.
Rescue comes in the form of a dead aunt, who has bequeathed all of her considerable estate to her nephew Albin. But wait, there is a condition: Albin has to marry and father a child within 18 months. Well, he just can't do it. Renato tries everything. He feigns an interest in women himself. He hires a marriage broker to tutor Albin in the ways of courtship and so forth.
The central comic idea of "La Cage aux Folles 3" is not what happens when a man puts on a dress, but rather, what happens when a man who wears a dress puts on a suit. The movie rides on the symmetries of classic farce: Renato makes Albin jealous to the point of a comically attempted suicide; once Renato has successfully engineered a "bride" for Albin, the woman makes Renato jealous, and he, too, comically attempts suicide. But it's hard to imagine a more low-energy comedy.
Five screen writers (including the director, Georges Lautner) have labored to produce rather less than you'd expect from one. When Renato introduces Albin as an author, Albin corrects, "authoress." When Albin triggers an airport metal detector and the guard asks him to empty his pockets, he produces a lipstick. When Albin appears at his own wedding, he's wearing a wedding dress.
Quel drole! La Cage aux Folles 3: The Wedding, at area theaters, is rated PG-13 and contains some profanity and sexual themes.