Long before Austin Powers arrived on the scene, Agent Phil Moskowitz was making the world safe for deli sandwiches. Featuring a "no-star cast aided and abetted by Woody Allen," What's Up, Tiger Lily (1966) is an A/V hybrid of Kagi No Kagi (1964), a Japanese James Bond-style spy thriller, with non-sequitur Allenesque dialogue dubbed in. When AIP first acquired the Japanese original, test screenings got a thumbs-down from American audiences. So, close on the heels of What's New, Pussycat (1965), the studio brought writer/director Allen on board.
The Grand Exhalted High Majah of Raspur, "a non-existent, but real-sounding country," has an important assignment for Special Agent Phil Moskowitz (Tatsuya Mihashi): he must recover a stolen egg salad recipe, a recipe the High Majah hopes someday will put his country on the map. (There's a waiting list, and as soon as there's an opening, they're next.) "It is written: He who makes the best egg salad shall rule over heaven and earth. Don't ask me why egg salad. I've got enough aggravation," the High Majah solemnly declares. The DVD has a few hidden secrets of its own. The main menu contains an "Easter Egg:" ten egg salad recipes, revealed with a strategic click of the remote. We gave this one a try: Green Chile Egg Salad (makes 4 sandwiches) 1 4-oz. can diced green chiles 4 hard-boiled eggs, chopped ¼ cup mayonnaise 2 Tbs. green onion, chopped ¼ tsp. hot sauce Combine ingredients and chill for one hour. Serve on lightly toasted bread or roll of your choice, garnished with lettuce and tomato. - Nora