The Ultimate Western Spoof. A town where everyone seems to be named Johnson is in the way of the railroad. In order to grab their land, Hedley Lemar (Harvey Korman(R.I.P.)), a politically connected nasty person, sends in his henchmen to make the town unlivable. After the sheriff is killed, the town demands a new sheriff from the Governor (Mel Brooks). Hedley convinces him to send the town the first Black sheriff (Cleavon Little(R.I.P.)) in the west. Bart is a sophisticated urbanite who will have some difficulty winning over the townspeople. Written by
John Vogel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
When the film was first screened for Warner Brothers executives, almost none of them laughed and the movie looked to be a disaster that the studio would not release. However, Mel Brooks quickly set up a subsequent screening for the studio's employees. When these regular folks laughed uproariously throughout the movie, Warners finally agreed to take a chance on releasing it. See more »
When Bart and Charlie exit the chain gang scene on the handcar to check out the quicksand up ahead, they are singing "Camptown Ladies" in Bb. The next shot shows them continuing to pump away on the handcar but the key has sharpened to C. See more »
Come on, boys! The way you're lollygaggin' around here with them picks and them shovels, you'd think it was a hundert an' twenty degree. Can't be more than a hundert an' fourteen.
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Karl Lukas is credited (as Karl Lucas) in opening credits only. See more »
Mel Brooks made several very popular and memorable films in the '70s but I doubt any was more popular than this one. Made just several years after the morals' code had been lifted in Hollywood, it was able to provide humor in a new and shocking way. People could fart, swear, have old ladies use the n- word, men could punch horses in the face, make fun of any religion, creed, race or whatever was there to make fun of ...in other words, no holds barred when it came to trying to get a laugh. Nothing was sacred at this time in Hollywood history and few capitalized on this as well as Brooks, especially with this film.
The film doesn't have much shock value anymore but it's still fun to watch and probably always will be, thanks to the outrageous characterizations in here.
On the negative side, especially if don't know Brooks does whatever he can to get a laugh and isn't all that political, this film might be too politically-correct with its reverse racism, bias against religion and overly crude situations.
But - a big but - there are so many funny lines in here, so many funny scenes you never forget and never fail to laugh no matter how many times you see it (the campfire scene alone has made men cry in laughter for 30 years) that you can overlook about anything in here.
In summary, a true "classic" guaranteed to entertain for many more years to come.
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