Celebrate the Thanksgiving holidays with three double bills
from some of the craziest comic masters of the past half century Mel Brooks,
Jacques Tati and Monty Python.
Saturday, November 17 7:30 PM
YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN, 1974, 20th Century
Fox, 105 min. Director Mel Brooks hilariously abby-normal homage to
1930s monster movies was a huge hit with American audiences one of the
strangest, funniest, most brilliantly conceived comedies since the heyday of the Marx
Bros. Gene Wilder (who co-wrote the script) stars as Dr. Frankenstein ("Thats
Frankensteen.") struggling to breathe life into tap-dancing monster Peter
Boyle, with demented help from hunchback assistant Marty Feldman, lusty Teri
Garr, neurotic girlfriend Madeline Kahn and Frau Blucher herself, Cloris
Leachman. "The biggest problem we had in doing Young Frankenstein was that we
had to do so many takes because we couldn't stop laughing." - Teri Garr.
HIGH ANXIETY, 1977, 20th Century Fox, 105
min. Director Mel Brooks spoofs Hitchcocks SPELLBOUND, but there are
countless other references as well, including nods to NORTH BY NORTHWEST, VERTIGO, THE
BIRDS, PSYCHO and more. Brooks stars as Dr. Richard Thorndyke, the newly-arrived
administrator of the Psychoneurotic Institute, suddenly beset by all manner of madmen and
mayhem. Many memorable laughs as well as co-stars Madeline Kahn, Harvey Korman, Cloris
Leachman and Dick Van Patten.
Friday, November 23 7:30 PM
Jacques Tati Holiday Double Feature:
MR. HULOTS HOLIDAY (LES VACANCES DE
MONSIEUR HULOT), 1953, Janus Films, 85 min. Dir. Jacques Tati. Tatis
first film as Monsieur Hulot, one of cinema's great comic personas, finds the irascible
Frenchman going to a resort town for a vacation and chaos predictably ensues. A warm and
whimsical hymn to the joys of life and the funny little things continually happening
around us we often fail to notice. Both films in French with English subtitles.
THE BIG DAY (JOUR DE FETE), 1947, Janus Films, 79 min.
Jacques Tatis feature debut as director is a priceless showcase for his comedic
talents as he plays a mailman attempting to streamline delivery in his small town. But he
soon finds his attempts at modernization and a coincidental Bastille Day celebration
dont mix. Tangible proof that Tati remains -- along with Chaplin, Keaton and the
Marx Brothers -- as one of the pantheon comic geniuses of the 20th Century.
Originally filmed in Thomson-Color, a tentative French alternative to Technicolor, JOUR DE
FÊTE was shot simultaneously in black-and-white as a precaution. Eventually, trouble with
the new color process led Tati to release this second, backup version. The film proved a
commercial and critical success, yet that didn't stop Tati from returning to the film in
the mid-1960s, re-editing the picture, remixing its soundtrack and even shooting new
footage for it. Until a 1995 "restoration" of the film's intended, original
color version carried out by Tati's daughter Sophie Tatischeff and cinematographer
François Ede, the 1964 JOUR DE FÊTE was the sole version in circulation.
Saturday, November 24 7:30 PM
Monty Python Double Feature!
MONTY PYTHON AND THE HOLY GRAIL,
1975, Rainbow Releasing, 91 min. Dirs. Terry Gilliam & Terry Jones. Python's
$250,000 epic features Graham Chapman as King Arthur, John Cleese as Sir
Lancelot the Brave and Eric Idle as Sir Robin The-Not-Quite-So-Brave. From the
limb-impaired Black Knight, the immortal Knights who say Ni, killer rabbits, the Black
Beast of Aarrgghh, and the extremely rude Frenchman, HOLY GRAIL is one of the most beloved
and quoted cult classics.
LIFE OF BRIAN, 1979, Rainbow Releasing, 94 min.
Directed by Monty Pythons naked piano player Terry Jones on the remains of
the sets from Zeffirelli's JESUS OF NAZARETH. Graham Chapman stars as Brian, Jesus'
next-door neighbor, in one of the most hilariously dangerous comedies ever. A combination
of Mel Brooks, the Marx Brothers, and Thomas Paine's The Age of Reason. Blessed are