6.6/10
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42 user 28 critic

The Twelve Chairs (1970)

GP | | Comedy | 28 October 1970 (USA)
In 1920s Soviet Russia, a fallen aristocrat, a priest and a con artist search for a treasure of jewels hidden inside one of twelve dining chairs, lost during the revolution.

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Writers:

(novel) (as Ilf), (novel) (as Petrov) | 3 more credits »
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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Nikolai Sestrin (as Andreas Voutsinas)
Diana Coupland ...
David Lander ...
Vlada Petric ...
Sevitsky
Elaine Garreau ...
Robert Bernal ...
Curator
Will Stampe ...
Night Watchman
Bridget Brice ...
Young Woman
...
Actor in Play
Rada Djuricin ...
Actress in Play
Branka Veselinovic ...
Natasha
Mladen 'Mladja' Veselinovic ...
Peasant (as Mladja Veselinovic)
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Storyline

A treasure hunt. An aging ex-nobleman of the Czarist regime has finally adjusted to life under the commisars in Russia. Both he and the local priest find that the family jewels were hidden in a chair, one of a set of twelve. They return separately to Moscow to find the hidden fortune. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A wild and hilarious chase for a fortune in jewels. See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

GP | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

28 October 1970 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The 12 Chairs  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Mel Brooks had problems with Yugoslavian extras who did not speak English. Some extras playing museum guards were to walk through the museum ringing a bell and shouting, "Closing time! Closing time!" The extras misunderstood and walked through the scene shouting "Cloakie Bye! Cloakie Bye!" Brooks decided "Cloakie Bye" was funnier, so he left it in the movie. See more »

Goofs

During the chase through the train yard, a modern era bus can be seen passing in the background. See more »

Quotes

Nikolai Sestrin: I hate people I don't like.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the opening credits the title of the movie is showed in Russian first (even with a typographic error 'Dvenadzat' stchlyev'), then it changes into the english title. The same happened at the end of the credits with the words "The end" (Konez), first cames the Russian word, than the english translation. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Spaceballs (1987) See more »

Soundtracks

L'Internationale
(uncredited)
(the soviet national anthem)
Written by Eugène Pottier & Pierre Degeyter
played at the bureau of housing and at the opening of the railroad worker house by an orchester
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User Reviews

 
The Brooks no one remembers....
14 September 1999 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

A long time ago, Mel Brooks had a subtle side.

Hard to believe, isn't it? The man responsible for such guffaw-fests as "Blazing Saddles", "Silent Movie", "High Anxiety" and such.... SUBTLE?

In "The Twelve Chairs", he does get laughs out of the story of a Russian nobleman searching for jewels sewn into one of twelve of his family's chairs that have been sold with the rest of his family's possessions. But not the way we're use to seeing Mel earn them.

This, time, he gets them through character study, human nature, individuals' reactions to certain embarrassing situations and, of course, good old-fashioned greed. And the laughs are there, to be sure.

I'm actually surprised that I liked this as much as I did. I'm used to Mel up there with the lampshade on his head, yucking it up with wild abandon. This film, subtle as it is, makes me laugh.

Of course, for purists, there's always good old DeLuise as another conniver searching for the same jewels. He makes with the wildness and insanity that makes a Mel Brooks film a Mel Brooks film, and he's a joy to see.

The others, Moody and Langella in particular, play regular human beings who see a situation, assess it and act as (nearly) anyone else would. More humorously, of course.

Seek out "The Twelve Chairs". Rare as it is, a rose by any other name....

And you know the rest.

Eight stars. Hey! Hey, hey, hey!


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