Tuesday, November 10, 2009

best films: #76: YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN (1974)

Previously ranked and blogged at #70
Never before has the ritz quite been put on like Peter Boyle and Gene Wilder did in 1974's Young Frankenstein. And this hilarious scene is merely the tip of the iceberg of the comic genius that ensues in Mel Brooks' masterpiece. Though the gents may've been the "stars," this movie was all about the ladies. Teri Garr, Cloris Leachman, and the pinnacle of 1970s comediennes Madeline Kahn (the performance that made No. 2 on my list of the best comedic performances of all time). Where to even begin? The roll in the hay, the incessantly neighing horses, or the "sweet mystery of life" -- and let's not forget Abby Normal. Mel Brooks certainly outdid himself in this, his greatest work (yep, I'm ranking it higher than The Producers). Buoyed by an absolutely brilliant cast of comic masters at the tops of their game, Wilder, Leachman, Garr, and Kahn have never been better, and Marty Feldman as Igor is the best kind of comic relief -- the kind that adds chemistry instead of occupying the spotlight. Tack on to all of this its insanely reliable rewatchability, and you've got a classic comedy that easily ranks up there with the funniest ever.

Standout Performance: Gotta go with Kahn on this one, but it's difficult to pass up the others in the cast. I tend to be biased, though, to anyone that appeared in Clue. Hard to top the flames on the side of her face...

1 comment:

Jose said...

I love, love, love Madeline Kahn in this. Whatever happened to comediennes of her stature and grace? Only she could made crass look like class.