Sunday, December 22, 2013

1977 - The Kentucky Fried Movie

Movie Poster - Kentucky Fried Movie (1977)

The Kentucky Fried Movie is a very funny film.

Not sort of funny, not kind of funny, not mostly funny. Nope the Kentucky Fried Movie is straight out asskickingly, stunningly, amazingly, fall out of your chair and hope not to dribble all over yourself laughing, funny.

Held together with the very thinnest of plot devices, the Kentucky Fried Movie is a collection of television shows, commercials, coming attractions and the feature presentation, an amazing parody of the Bruce Lee classic, Enter the Dragon, the spot-on perfect, A Fistful of Yen.

A couple of highlights, include Bill Bixby for the National Headache Center, the soft-core drive-in porn parody, Catholic High School Girls in Trouble, and my personal favorite, Henry Gibson hosting the United Appeal for the Dead.

Written by Jim Abrahams, David Zucker and Jerry Zucker, the same team who just a few years later stunned the world with the classic socio-economic drama, Airplane, teamed with director John Landis, straight off his debut film, the insightful, Bergman inspired story of lost innocence, Schlock, the Kentucky Fried Movie, probably packs more honest laughs per minute then any fifty average Scary Movie sequels.

And yes, at this point, I'm sure there are 50, and all of them featuring an ever aging Anna Farris.

Even the dumbass, semi-racist jokes stuck in the 1970's work.

Filmed for $650,000, the Kentucky Fried Movie would go on to earn more then $7,000,000 in it's initial release making it one of the bigger movie hits of the year, which is sort of funny when you figure that in today's terms, $650,000 pretty much covers the cost of production t-shirts and hats.

The producers got quite the deal for their money, with Landis directing a clean, professional looking film, that didn't suffer from the earnest, but amateurish film-making that went into previous sketch pictures such as The Groove Tube and TunnelVision. The kind of competent direction supplied by Landis allowed the viewer to relax into the film and enjoy the brilliant writing of Abrahams, and the Zuckers who had spent years developing the material in their comedy group, the Kentucky Fried Theater.

The torrid sexual energy of Cleopatra Schwartz

Evan Kim and Bong Soo Han lead the cast of, A Fistful of Yen, the movie's "Feature Presentation". Like a Mad magazine parody come insanely to life, Yen perfectly parodies the Bruce Lee classic, taking the movie apart scene by scene and milking it for all the silliness they could manage.

Up there with the very best of film comedy, the Kentucky Fried Movie is a low-brow classic that shouldn't be missed.

An easy A+

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