Tom Hanks wanted to prove his dramatic talent in the mid-1980s, and Nothing in Common gave him a ripe opportunity. Playing an emotionally immature Chicago advertising executive, Hanks offers a prototype of his later, better role in Big—the joking man-child with seemingly limitless reserves of energetic humor, perfectly suited to director Garry Marshall’s trademark blend of featherweight comedy and sentiment.
In The Apple Dumpling Gang Rides Again, Amos and Theodore (Tim Conway and Don Knotts) the two bumbling outlaw wannabees from The Apple Dumpling Gang are back. They are trying to make it on their own. When they arrive at the town they are going to, all sorts of things go awry. They accidentally subdue the town’s legendary lawman, Wooly Bill Hitchcock thus enraging him into tracking them down. They also are accused of bank robbery. And they “enlist” in the army, and burn down the fort. Amid all this, the army is besieged by someone stealing their supplies.
The Prize Fighter is a very funny, very sweet comedy. Set in depression-era America, Tim Conway stars as Bags Collins who has a perfect record as a boxer – twenty fights, twenty knockouts—and twenty losses. His manager, Shakes, is the ‘brains’ of the team, played by Don Knotts.
DVD review of Mel Brooks’ Silent Movie – Aspiring filmmakers Mel Funn (Mel Brooks), Marty Eggs (Marty Feldman) and Dom Bell (Dom DeLuise) go to a financially troubled studio with an idea for a silent movie. In an effort to make the movie more marketable, they attempt to recruit a number of big name stars to appear, while the studio’s creditors attempt to thwart them
Editorial Review of Silent Movie, courtesy of Amazon.com
One of Mel Brooks’s weaker vehicles, this 1976 feature finds a movie producer (Brooks) deciding that the public is ready for the silent film form again. Reasonably ambitious and promising, the film ultimately doesn’t do for silent cinema what Brooks did for atmospheric horror (by reviving it while parodying it) in Young Frankenstein. Lots of famous faces pass through Silent Movie, to varying effect. Perhaps the best joke in the movie is the one performer who actually has a line of dialogue: mime Marcel Marceau. —Tom Keogh
Editorial Review of The Sid Caesar Collection – The Fan Favorites – 50th Anniversary Edition, courtesy of Amazon.com
“When we worked together,” reminisces Sid Caesar, “it was magic, and you don’t question magic.” So just enjoy this essential three-disc collection of vintage sketches from Your Show of Shows and Caesar’s Hour. To work on these programs was to attend “the Harvard of Comedy,” and this “great amalgamation of talents,” which included Carl Reiner, Imogene Coca, Howard Morris, Nanette Fabray, Woody Allen, Mel Brooks, Larry Gelbart, and Neil and Danny Simon, were at the head of their class. “We did everything,” Caesar notes at one point, and the proof is on these discs:
What makes The Munsters’ Revenge different from so many other “reunion” TV movies of the 1980’s? For starters, it’s worth watching. Although the plot is weak at best, the interplay between the characters of Herman Munster (Fred Gwynne), Grandpa (Al Lewis) and Lily (Yvonne DeCarlo) is hilarious and priceless. For these three actors, it’s as though the series never ended – that’s how effortlessly they make it appear in recreating their characters.
DVD review of The Emperor’s New Clothes starring Sid Caesar, Clive Revill, Robert Morse. A very good children’s film that plays on two levels – one for the children, and another for the adults, with the perpetually funny Sid Caesar cracking me up every time he appears as the self-absorbed emperor
Sid Caesar is one of those clowns who can take a minor part and make it laugh out loud hilarious — which he does in this version of the classic children’s tale, The Emperor’s New Clothes.
The Navigator is considered to be one of Buster Keaton’s best films, and it’s easy to see why. In The Navigator, Buster Keaton plays the part of Rollo Treadway, a young man who is rich, but without purpose in his life. He decides to propose to his girlfriend, who rejects his proposal. Heartbroken, he decides to go on a cruise to help him forget about his trouble. At the same time, his girlfriend and her father are involved in a problem on a large ship that the father own. This results in the girlfriend and Buster both being on board the ship as it is set adrift.
Product Description of Lost Keaton
For Buster Keaton, the era of the talkies was a tumultuous time. As a result of signing with MGM, the quality, the quality of his ambitious, eclectic comedies began to decline and in 1934, he signed a contract with Earle W. Hammons Educational Pictures which, despite its name, specialized in comedy short subjects. Keaton’s move to Educational was a return to his roots, crafting a stream of two reel comedies in rapid succession, as he had done in the early 1920s, when he first refined his cinematic craft.The films Buster Keaton made with Educational Pictures (ALL sixteen of which are collected here) pay homage to his earlier work, but at the same time incorporated the element of sound, all while exploring new possibilities for his recurring comic persona, Elmer.
Editorial review of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, courtesy of Amazon.com
“Something familiar, something peculiar, something for everyone: a comedy tonight!” Those words from the opening song pretty much describe the menu in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, a frantic adaptation of the stage musical by Larry Gelbart and Burt Shevelove. The wild story, set in ancient Rome, follows a slave named Pseudolus (Zero Mostel, snorting and gibbering) as he tries to extricate himself from an increasingly farcical situation; Mostel and a bevy of inspired clowns, including Phil Silvers, Jack Gilford, and Buster Keaton, keep the slapstick and the patter perking.