Roll, roll! Roll in ze hay!

Chances are you immediately knew what this meant. But just in case…

I read this earlier today, and it reminded me of a deal I made about ten years ago.

I had a co-worker at the time who thought Adam Sandler’s BILLY MADISON and HAPPY GILMORE were the funniest movies she’d ever seen.

“Whaaaaa?”  I have nothing against Adam Sandler.  I just don’t think he’s funny. “Haven’t you ever seen YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN or SOME LIKE IT HOT?”

“No. Are they funny?” OOF! The verbal equivalent of a kick to the balls.

After the impact of that question wore off, we made a deal: she’d watch my two and I’d watch hers.

Jump to the present. I’ve yet to uphold my end of the deal, and she left years ago, and I doubt she’s followed through.  Which is fine by me.

The above quote also reminded me I haven’t watched YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN or SOME LIKE IT HOT in years. The more I think about them, the more I realize how incredibly well-written each one is.  Comedy that’s still fresh and hilarious years later.  Even nicer, it’s smart-funny. Granted, YF can be a bit…bawdy at times, but that’s Mel Brooks for you.

What’s also so impressive is that the jokes are organic. They don’t feel forced. Each one fits the situation perfectly.

“Why would a guy want to marry a guy?” “Security!”

“Igor, will you help with the bags?” “Soitenly. You take the blonde, I’ll take the one in the turban.”

They just keep coming, one after another.  While a lot of dialogue today comes across as plain old snark, it’s the opposite here. And not just funny – double entendres, plays  on words,  etc., etc. Again – smart writing.

Count me among the writers out there who would love to be able write like this.  Believe me – it ain’t easy.

Could movies like those be made today? Hard to say.  If anything, the modern equivalent would be more like the writing on 30 ROCK or the still-missed ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT.

What not-recent comedy do you think still holds up, and why?

-Incidentally, this is blogpost #300. In honor of that, go enjoy a piece of pie. Tell ’em I sent you.

2 thoughts on “Roll, roll! Roll in ze hay!

  1. Congrats on your #300. And i’m one of those whom enjoys Community, but nothing compares to Arrested Development. 30 Rock lost some strength along the seasons. Still, yeah, there are good comedies, but the style really changed since Wilder or Brooks, before it was sharp, now it is quirky, when it is not simply dirty. I also miss those physical gags from silent days…

  2. I always forget about Community. I haven’t watched it, but have heard great things about it. Sounds worth checking out. Thanks for reading!

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