All posts tagged: Airplane!

Popdose Tributes: Leslie Nielsen and Irvin Kershner

The Reaper respects no holiday, and so it is that two film luminaries passed this past weekend. The first, Leslie Nielsen, needs no introduction. While he first came to notoriety as a dramatic actor, with the sci-fi classic Forbidden Planet jumping immediately to mind, it was his string of spoofs with the Abrhams and Zuckers of the world that will immortalize him – Dr. Rumack in Airplane!, Lt. Frank Drebin in the Naked Gun films. There are too many gags, one-liners and pratfalls to adequately reel off. So cyclical was his career that when he returned to a dramatic role, such as that in Barbara Streisand’s Nuts, it was first a shock to see him in that context, and second, a shock he was so good at it. He assumed his comedic turns so thoroughly that he made you forget the funniest aspect was he was always playing it for real. Latter spoofs from other creators like Spy Hard and Dracula: Dead and Loving It failed to fully capture the helzapoppin’ energy, and sub-machine gun …

Revival House: Eleven Great Comedies

Everybody can use a good chuckle now and then, but the feeling one gets from uncontrollable laughter is hard to beat. I’m talking about the kind of laughter that makes your face turn red, brings you to tears, and leaves you begging for it to stop, if only for a second. That’s the kind of comedy I’m talking about here. Every film on this admittedly slapstick-heavy list is all about one thing: that bubbling feeling of joy that comes from laughing until your sides hurt. Airplane! (1980). Truth be told, in terms of sheer laughs, I consider this to be the funniest movie ever made. The jokes come so fast that you don’t even have time to process them all — I think it was around my 15th viewing of Zucker-Abrahams-Zucker’s directorial debut that I noticed a vulture lurking in the background in one shot. Just about every single disaster-movie cliche is spoofed, plus a few other genres are thrown in for good measure. And just when you think you’ve seen it all, a woman …