Blu-ray Review High Anxiety
Directed by: Mel Brooks Cast: Mel Brooks, Cloris Leachman, Harvey Korman, Madeline Kahn Running Time: 1 hr 35 mins Rating: PG Due Out: May 11, 2010
PLOT: A respected psychiatrist (Brooks) becomes head of a psychological institute with administrators that try to frame him for murder.
WHO'S IT FOR?: Those who love Hitchcock films. But don't watch this one if you might be a neurotic who is very, very nervous.
Vertigo, North by Northwest, The Birds, Psycho, and other Hitchcock titles are parodied here in this spoof that is both respectful and very goofy when dealing with the original material. Brooks is fun to watch on-screen as the lead, but the list of funny and memorable jokes is shorter than one may expect. High Anxiety is a likable parody, especially with its goofy cast that can play ball with Brooks' humor, but it's not one that anyone can really defend as being one of his best.
MOVIE SCORE: 5/10
Hitchcock and Mel: Spoofing the Master of Suspense HD Featurette The "Am I Very, Very Nervous?" Test Don't Get Anxious! The Trivia of Hitchcock Trivia Track Isolated Score Track
History of the World Pt. 1
Directed by: Mel Brooks Cast: Mel Brooks, Dom DeLuise, Madeline Kahn, Gregory Hines, Orson Welles, Harvey Korman Running Time: 1 hr 32 mins Rating: R Due Out: May 11, 2010
PLOT: Did you fall asleep during history class? If you did, it's time to play catsup with some important moments in Earth's saga, such as Moses and the Ten Commandments, the first critic, and the truth behind the Spanish Inquisition.
WHO'S IT FOR?: People who can laugh at religion-based jokes. Oh, and anyone curious to get a sneak peek at "Jews in Space."
The cartoonish humor of Mel Brooks comes at full force here, and it works a little more than half of the time. Some "moments" in human history are presented as brief gags, and some actually turn into mini-plots, all of them based in Brooks' classic goofy spectrum. As like many of the segments in this movie, a long musical number on the Spanish Inquisition is more amusing than it is hilarious. Brooks' spin on the Last Supper might be the best moment, and also the more irreverent.
MOVIE SCORE: 6/10
Musical Mel: Inventing "The Inquisition" HD Featurette Making History: Mel Brooks on Creating the World HD Featurette The Real History of the World Trivia Track Isolated Score Track
Robin Hood: Men in Tights
Directed by: Mel Brooks Cast: Cary Elwes, Dave Chappelle, Mel Brooks, Dom DeLuise, Dick Van Patten, Patrick Stewart Running Time: 1 hr 30 mins Rating: PG-13 Due Out: May 11, 2010
PLOT: Mel Brooks continues his tirade of spoofing and takes on the legend of Robin Hood.
WHO'S IT FOR?: Anyone still suffering from a headache from the disappointment that is Ridley Scott's take on Robin Hood can ail themselves with this top-notch spoof.
There are many funny moments in this movie that comes second to last in Mel Brooks' directorial filmography. Still, the best scene will always be Dom DeLuise's spot-on impersonation of Marlon Brando, which encompasses all of the actor's legendary moments into a very solid impersonation. Along with that, you've got the hilarious introduction of Dave Chappelle into Hollywood, along with a show-stealing appearance by Mel Brooks, once again adding a little Judaism to the film's humor. With almost as many chuckles as Spaceballs before it, this is one of Mel Brooks' top films that can be watched more than just once. It is worthy of a wealthy amount of viewings.
MOVIE SCORE: 8/10
Funny Men in Tights: Three Generations of Comedy HD Featurette Robin Hood: Men in Tights - The Legend Had It Coming HBO Special Commentary by Mel Brooks Isolated Score Track