January 7th, 2006

Monkey

You Mean, "Shpringtime For ... You-Know-Who?"

Cool though Ferris Bueller was (and he was), Matthew Broderick (like Johnny Depp) is simply no substitute for Gene Wilder. I shudder to think of who they'd cast as The Waco Kid were they to remake Blazing Saddles today (as if they would... or could).

We saw the new version of The Producers earlier this week. Although it was quite good, with some very good performances (Nathan Lane is almost as good at scenery chewing and scene stealing as Zero Mostel himself; not to mention Uma Thurman, Will Ferrel, and the guys playing Roger De Bris and Carmen Ghia), it's impossible not to consider both the original movie and the Broadway play when watching it. (I've never actually seen the Broadway play, unfortunately, but I have the excellent soundtrack - with some very good songs that were shortened or deleted entirely from the film.)

The movie was, as I said, quite good - but, had I never seen its predecessors, I would have thought it was one of the best movies I'd seen in some time. I still recommend it; but I also strongly recommend that you see the original if you've never seen that... if only for Dick Shawn as Lorenzo St. DuBois ("My friends call me L.S.D.")