Monday, June 17, 2019

"Ladies Are Unwell -- Gentlemen Vomit"

My Favorite Year ended up as one of my favorite movies the first time I saw it on HBO. It's a sidesplitting tribute to Hollywood's golden age and classic 1950's TV comedy. It's the kind of film Mel Brooks could've made -- and he did. He produced it, and although he didn't direct it, it's modeled after his time as a writer on Your Show Of Shows, with King Kaiser (Joseph Bologna) standing in for Sid Caesar, and the Errol Flynn-esque Alan Swan (Peter O'Toole) as a boozy guest star under the watch of young writer Benjy Stone (Mark Linn-Baker, before Perfect Strangers).

A look at the films
that have left a mark on my life.

The film works so well because it breezes through so much of its material. Its characters are both funny and likable. The gags are fast and furious. The whole film feels like it could have been an extended version of Your Show OF Shows.

And it's not just the dialogue that's funny, as in this scene where a union boss confronts King Kaiser about the mobster parody sketch on his show.

I can still hear the Royal Father laughing his tail off when he heard the car horns.

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