Something comedic always can be found in characters pretending to be something they’re not. Dustin Hoffman did it in “Tootsie” and so did Julie Andrews in “Victor, Victoria” but no one did it better than Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon in “Some Like It Hot.”
Famed director Billy Wilder with his long-time partner, I.A.L. Diamond, co-wrote the script that is No. 1 on the American Film Institute’s list of All-time Favorite Comedies.
Marilyn Monroe is Sugar, the lead singer in an all-girl band. Prohibition is in full force (as are the police trying to enforce it), but that doesn’t stop her from keeping a flask strapped to her thigh or the rest of the girls in the band from filling the hot water bottle with anything but H2O.
After witnessing the St. Valentine’s Day massacre in Chicago, a saxophonist (Curtis) and a bass player (Lemmon) disguise themselves in wigs, high heels and higher voices to join with Sugar and the girls for a gig in Florida.
The dialogue and comedic timing from beginning to end are priceless. The supporting cast, including gangster paragon George Raft, the pursuing Irish cop, Pat O’Brien, and the adorable, rubber-faced Joe E. Brown, adds to the silliness. If you’ve ever wondered about the charisma of Marilyn Monroe, you only need to watch Sugar seduce a supposedly uninterested millionaire (also Curtis) with kisses.
“Some Like It Hot” is the epitome of a well-crafted comedy. It’s fun and funny and shouldn’t be missed.
** For more information on a local screening at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 19, check the Olympic Theatre Arts website (olympic-theatre.tripod.com) and the Sequim-Dungeness Valley Chamber of Commerce at www.sequimchamber.com/.
Remember “The Horse Whisperer” a few years back? Robert Redford starred in and directed the movie based on the best-selling novel. Well, Buck Brannaman was a technical advisor on the film and now is the star of a documentary based on his life, “Buck.”
First-time filmmaker Cindy Meehl assembled a stellar crew, including editor Toby Shimin, to tell Buck’s story. The most important quality for a good documentary is either a driving personality or a compelling subject. Actually, “Buck” has both.
Buck Brannaman was a child prodigy, along with his older brother. The boys traveled the country western circuit doing rope tricks, even appearing on the game show “What’s My Line?” Behind the glamour and recognition, the reality of the boys’ lives included physical and mental abuse from a troubled father. Given his early years, it’s truly amazing that Buck evolved into an intuitive and knowledgeable horse trainer and a gentle man.
Buck travels the country most weeks of the year giving workshops and seminars to horse owners on all levels. His training approach is unique and while watching him handle the animals (and their owners) you can’t help but be in awe of his patience and ability.
Not every encounter is successful, but every encounter offers a lesson to be learned. With the subtle charm of a laconic cowboy imagined in the Old West, “Buck” demonstrates that good teaching practices can be applied successfully far beyond the paddock.
Ugly bridesmaid dresses are the least of these girls’ problems. Lillian (Maya Rudolph) is getting married and asks her childhood friend, Annie (Kristen Wiig) to be her maid of honor. Over the years, their relationship has changed and the bride’s new “best” friend is desperate to take over the duties of the maid of honor (planning a shower, choosing dresses, arranging the bachelorette party).
The competition between financially strapped Annie and financially flush Helen (Rose Byrne) escalates to total silliness with the entire bridal party tossed into the fray. Megan, the groom’s robust sister (played flawlessly by Melissa McCarthy) emerges as the voice of reason along with a hapless police officer (Chris O’Dowd) who spends a great deal of time not giving Annie tickets.
“Bridesmaids,” scripted by Wiig and Annie Mumolo, plays like an extended sketch comedy with improvisation getting in the way. You might find yourself longing for snappy dialogue and crisper editing in this too long, two-hour outing. But there are moments that may trigger pre-wedding angst and they may seem funnier since they’re happening to somebody else.
Grading this week’s DVDs: the ABC’s
Mon, Mar 19, 2012
Politics, political figures and spies
Tue, Mar 6, 2012
Tue, Feb 14, 2012
And now, reality
Mon, Jan 30, 2012
Looking back on the year that was (Part 1 of 2)
Wed, Dec 7, 2011
Film buffs should revisit ‘Northwest’
Wed, Nov 2, 2011
Conspiracy theories played out on film
Tue, Oct 18, 2011
Mix-ups, marriage and horse management
Mon, Oct 3, 2011
Going ‘Grease,’ locally and on DVD
Tue, Sep 13, 2011
It’s All About the Music
Fri, Sep 9, 2011