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OK, so it's not technically a movie, it's just a collection of the best
sketches from Monty Pythons Flying Circus series's 1 and 2.But the fact of
the matter is it's so damn funny.
It contains all the great sketches, including the infamous Dead Parrot Sketch, ("This parrot is deceased, it is no more. It ceases to be.") the great art of hiding sketch as well as many others.
In no way does it compare to the feature films, but this is Python at their best. And when have you ever watched Flying Circus and not laughed?
The only thing that this film lacks is the Spanish Inquisition. Why they weren't included is beyond me, but of course no-one expects them.
Marks out of 10 - an 8. Rib achingly funny.
I'm very sad when people don't GET Monty Python, and I believe that the measley 7.2 rating this great movie got is a reflection of this, that's such a tragedy. Everybody who has a good sense of humor must rent this movie, because it is a film classic. The only catch is, you have to be in the right mood where totally random things are funny. Hey--you can't be in a goofy mood and GET a drama, like American History X, for example. So get in a goofy mood, watch this movie, go buy a parrot, and I only have one more thing to say--and now for something completely different.
To criticize AND NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT on the grounds
of obsolescence would seem an heretical thing to do. Monty Python had
such a profound influence on the development of British comedy in the
late Sixties and Seventies that their place in history is perpetually
assured. And yet looking at the film nearly forty-five years later, it
has to be said that much of the humor is puerile, the kind of thing
that might be expected in a student production performed at the end of
the spring semester. Some of the sketches go on far too long, while the
more surreal moments - such as the opening sequence, involving a series
of people trying not to be seen and getting blown up - are highly
reminiscent of THE GOON SHOW, the groundbreaking radio program of the
Fifties that provide much of Python's antecedents.
Nonetheless, for those that grew up with Python on television, film and the theater (as well as those fortunate enough to attend their series of concerts last year), AND NOW ... contains several immortal moments, such as the Parrot sketch, the upper-class twit of the year and the Lumberjack song. It's also interesting to reflect on what happened to the performers: Michael Palin, the singer in the last-named of these sketches, would eventually go on to become an established television documentary presenter and all-round celebrity appearing on innumerable tribute programs; while John Cleese would end up carving out a career as a film actor and (latterly) an autobiographer.
Some of the sketches could now be considered both sexist and racist; there are at least two occasions where viewers are encouraged to look at half-naked women and ogle them in a spirit more reminiscent of THE BENNY HILL SHOW than Monty Python. There is also one moment of dialog - obviously meant parodically - where Eric Idle talks about not wanting to live next door to "those kind of people" i.e. African-Caribbeans. Nonetheless, we should bear in mind that AND NOW ... is very much a product of its time; in the early Seventies such attitudes were still considered permissible (the ITV sitcom LOVE THY NEIGHBOUR had the white protagonist continually insulting his African-Caribbean neighbor). The location filming (such as it is) conjured up a now-vanished world of inner London, with traffic-free streets and a predominantly white population.
Definitely worth a look, but don't expect anything too humorous, especially if viewers are unfamiliar with the Pythons.
I don't know why I didn't get more out of this. Several isolated times
a stern and sober British Army officer is interpolated and announces to
the viewers that this isn't worth watching because "it's silly -- just
silly." I ruefully found myself often agreeing.
I don't suppose there's any point in trying to outline a plot because there is none. It's a series of sketches evidently gotten from their TV show. I first heard the "dead parrot" sketch on the radio and thought it was hilarious. Now, seeing it on the screen, it seems to have lost much of its voltage. Nor did I find it so amusing when a despondent man leaves a building, stops to think for a moment, and a huge iron weight falls on him and he splats under it.
It's possible that this particular material is already familiar, so that watching the film is like hearing a joke for the second or third time. It's also likely that it doesn't seem so fresh or amusing because some of it is dated. The movie was put together in 1971, when much of Western society was in turmoil -- race riots in the streets, an unpopular war in a country no one could identify on a blank map, gays screaming out of the closet, widespread sexual indulgence, bloodshed in Northern Ireland, pop tunes encouraging revolution, that sort of thing. But it's all gone or at least abated today. So the "Granny gangs" don't resonate the way they did at the time. At the same time, the "upper-class twit" sketch still gets laughs. I mean, hunting live rabbits that are staked out and spread-eagled on the ground! Trying to commit suicide by shooting one's self -- and missing. I'm laughing now, just rerunning it in my mind.
Each of their four features were to improve monotonically, with "The Meaning of Life" nearing perfection of the style. That last one is mature. Well, mature for Monty Python. And it's both engaging and carries a covert theme of the utmost seriousness. The Granny Gangs are long gone, but questions about the meaning of life, or the absence of meaning, still plague us.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
First let me start off by saying that having just recently watched all of the Monty Python movies for the first time, I have to confess I think they're four of the most overrated movies ever made. And I'm British. However ... And Now for Something Completely Different is definitely one of the somewhat better ones. Certain highlights include that of the fruit self defense class and the most elegant twit competition ... and maybe the marriage counselor. But regardless, this movie as a sketch show just feels out of place in the world of comedy movies. Especially for the 70's. And I have to confess I'm really not a fan of John Cleese in this movie, compared to his work in Fawlty Towers It just seems really orchestrated and forced whenever he has to do something remotely funny in this movie. All in all this movie/sketch show was a real let down for me but nowhere near as bad of a letdown as the next two movies were...
The members of "Monty Python's Flying Circus" recreate some of the best
bits from the first two seasons of their TV series.
OK--I LOVE Monty Python. "Life of Brian" and "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" are two of the funniest movies ever made. "Live at the Hollywood Bowl" isn't bad and even "Meaning of Life" had its moments. However THIS was dreadful. What works on TV certainly does not work in a movie. This movie needs what the TV show had...a laugh track. Moments that were hilarious on TV just simply don't work in this context. I saw it at a revival theatre with "Holy Grail" once ages ago. The audience was in hysterics during "Grail". This one was greeted with dead silence. There was the occasional laugh here and there but mostly everyone sat there without reacting. It just doesn't work. Stick with any of the other movies and avoid this one.
This is a collection of many of the best and most loved sketches from the Flying Circus, redone on a (slightly!) bigger budget, and with a film crew instead of on sets. That of course means the camera-work is more loose and with proper, attractive cinematography, the editing more crisp, and the production value increases noticeably(better FX, sound quality, etc.). The parts tend to be played by the same members and extras(the lovely Carol Cleveland included), and much of the animation is reused. Things are put in a different order to keep things fresh, and some of the segues are changed, as well. Timing is at times less sharp than the original version, but they certainly put the same passion and effort into it. The Dead Parrot, "Say no more" man, "the importance of not being seen" and many others. This is like a reel of the greatest of the episodes, coming in at slightly less than 90 minutes. Of course there are slow points, and there is, indeed, no new material here. And yes, if you are unfamiliar with them, I'd try to watch the show before this. There is a lot of bloody, violent, disturbing content, a little sexuality and brief topless female nudity in this. I recommend it to long-time fans. 8/10
Monty Pythons And Now For Something Completely Different is a hilarious
movie filled with completely random sketches,especially the animated
bits,which I also find to be some of the funniest bits.I find the Monty
Python crew to be some of the funniest people on earth,especially John
Cleese,Graham Chapman and Michael Palin.My favourite parts are,the
worlds funniest joke,the dirty fork scene,the killer cars and the
lumberjack song.I find the Holy Grail and Life Of Brian better
though,but Monty Python never let me down.
The Monty python crew,Graham Chapman,Eric Idle,Michael Palin,John Cleese,Terry Jones and Terry Gilliam provide use with one random sketch after another in their first feature film based on sketches and characters from Monty Pythons Flying Circus.
Apart from the fact that it's great introduction to works of the famous
British comedy sketch group for a newbee, I want to stress that it
lacks canned laughter and even this fact deserves ten out of ten vote.
Many famous sketches are there (Parrot sketch is included) some of them
are shortened, some of them a little bit different, but it's the best
way to introduce a new comer to "Monty Python's flying Circus". To
hardcore Python fans the movie can have somewhat less value, but worth
watching nonetheless. Sketches here have different from TV show links
between each other, some accents are stressed in a different way
Summary: 10/10 for lack of canned laughter.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The best and not the best sketches from the Monty Python's Flying Circus strung together. The film contains most of the favorite sketches from the show done over on actual locations and not in a studio with some new (and old) animation to link them. Its a grand old time for those who love the show and the sketches, and the perfect primer for those wanting to know what all of the fuss is about. Odds are that if the film makes you laugh, you'll like Python and its brand of off kilter humor. Is it the best of the films? no. Nor is it really the best showcase for some of the sketches. Part of the problem is that the arrangement of the sketches isn't ideal. They don't really flow as neatly into each other as on the show. The other problem is direction of the sketches isn't ideal. Frankly the director didn't understand much of the humor and what was tight sketch comedy on the TV show is much too loose here. Still, despite its flaws the film will make you laugh. Recommended.
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