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The Critic (1963)

Approved | | Animation, Comedy, Short | 20 May 1963 (USA)
Mel Brooks is an old man watching abstract animations. He doesn't understand them, so he heckles with strange commentary, to the annoyance of those around him.

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins. See more awards »
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Cast

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Storyline

Mel Brooks is an old man watching abstract animations. He doesn't understand them, so he heckles with strange commentary, to the annoyance of those around him. Written by Scott Hutchins <scottandrewh@home.com>

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What da H--- is Dis? Dis is from the FUNNIEST short of the century! See more »


Certificate:

Approved

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Release Date:

20 May 1963 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Il critico  »

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(Eastmancolor)

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Premiered at the Sutton Theater in Manhattan as the opening short for the Peter Sellers comedy Heavens Above. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Old Man from Russia: What the hell is this? Must be a cartoon.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Lady with the Torch (1999) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Attribution at work.
27 October 2014 | by (Deming, New Mexico, USA) – See all my reviews

A short, cute divertimento. We see on the screen, in color, a series of abstract patterns, sometimes alone, sometimes interacting with other abstract patterns. None of the images are realistic in any way -- just blobs and wavy lines.

Then we hear the voice of "the critic" -- Mel Brooks as a seventy-one year old Russian Jew who shushes the audience members who try to shut him up by saying, "Leave me alone. I'm seventy-one years old and I'm gonna die soon." The first words he utters are, "Vot da hell is dis?" And as the images come and go, he attributes personalities, temperaments, and motive to them.

As a triangle approaches a blob, he calls out, "Look out now! Here it comes! Uhh -- too late." When two dissimilar images begin to change and resemble each other, they're "in love." All of this cognition embodiment comes between his kvetching about having paid two dollars to see what he dismisses as "ah French movie."

The first time I saw this in the theater, as a kid, I thought it was hilarious. I convulse less now because I know so much more about Mel Brooks and what he's up to. I doubt that he intended a nearly perfect illustration of a psychological approach to human understanding that's known as "attribution theory."

Like Brooks' critic, we all are constantly investing meanings in events that may have no meaning at all.

Did you know that during the scandal involving President Clinton and Monica Lewinsky, Clinton wore yellow ties on TV that were actually sending signals to Lewinsky? No? It was all over the news at the time.

The movie is STILL charming, even on the third viewing.


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