Irwin "Fletch" Fletcher, Los Angeles journalist, really lives for his profession. As Jane Doe, he publishes articles that have caused several heads to roll in the past. Now, Fletch is at it... See full summary »
Joe Don Baker,
Comical goings on at an exclusive golf club. All the members are wealthy and eccentric, and all the staff are poor and slightly less eccentric. The main character is 'Danny'; he's a caddy who will do almost anything to raise money to go to college. There are many subplots, including the assistant green keeper's pursuit of a cute (obviously stuffed) gopher. Written by
There are five movies Chevy Chase has done that were really good: Seems Like Old Times, Foul Play, National Lampoons Vacation, Fletch, and this icon of film comedy, Caddyshack. The plot is very simple and has often been imitated and the tone of the movie is said in its tagline: the snobs against the slobs. Who are the snobs? The men of Bushwood country club, the snobby Bishop, Dr. Beeper, who never seems to be at his office and the obnoxious leader of the pack Judge Smails, played by Ted Knight.
Who are the slobs? There is Ty Webb, a wealthy man who plays without keeping score. Carl Spackler is a groundskeeper that smokes a little too much. And of course the biggest snob of them all, developer Al Czervik, outspoken, obnoxious and completely out of place in a country club. Rodney Dangerfield plays him, Ty Webb is played by Chevy Chase and Bill Murray plays Carl Spackler.
These characters rub together uncomfortably in various forms to create all-time great comedy moments. What makes this movie so good is there is no star that dominates the movie. Everyone dominates the stage equally. They all have great lines and they work very well together.
This comedy is extremely dirty and raunchy even by today's standards. The raunchiness has worn off with time and some of the take-offs are not so obvious to future generations but some of these lines have become well known jokes among some. Part of the reason this movie works so well is the jokes are rapid fire. They just hit you with one line after another.
One thing I noticed watching this movie is that these characters pop out at you. These people are incredible snobs, incredible sluts, extremely insulting, or just weird. There are no really neutral characters. Every character in this movie does something that makes them stand out if not for a few seconds. This can be accredited to the great writing and directing by Harold Ramis one of the great comedians of our day despite the fact he is very underrated and is mostly these days behind the cameras.
Another thing about these characters is that they seem so real. Today a lot of characters in comedy films are cardboard characters. All of the characters here are written so nicely and believably and this is something very rare in modern comedy. And there are so many classic scenes in this movie. Among my favorites is the boating scene, the swimming pool scene, and when we see Rodney Dangerfield's golf bag phone.
And there are many great small parts by people like Albert Salmi, who plays Danny Noonan's father, Brian Doyle-Murray, who plays Lou Loomis, Scott Colomby who plays a troublemaking Caddy named Tony D'Annunzio, and Sarah Holcombe plays Maggie O'Hooligan, Noonan's girlfriend, Cindy Morgan plays the niece of Judge Smails, Lacey Underall, Henry Wilcoxon plays a rather bigoted Bishop Fred Pickering, Dan Resin plays a rather uncaring Dr. Beeper and there are many other great small parts. All of these small parts are very good. But one thing to notice is all of the ironic names like Lacey Underall, Maggie O'Hooligan, Dr. Beeper and plenty of other funny names.
The movie is a bit dated. Everyones hair is very long, the segway music seems heavily disco influenced, there are a lot more people wearing plaid, and there are jokes about people like Dick Cavett when so few people today know who he is. I love some of the more pointed humor in this movie, but I like the effect of the age of the movie. The movie makes some rich people look like callous uncaring bigoted fools and has some not too king rich people talk very bluntly (such as Smails' nephew say he knows some drugs are good because he got it from a Negro) Be forewarned this could be an offensive movie to some.
My hat is off to the two leads, Rodney Dangerfield and Chevy Chase. Bill Murray is funny too but his part is very small and this is not the best showcase of his talents. But Chase is goofy to no end. In this part he always manages to say the most off the wall comments that are hysterical. Dangerfield uses his patented rich obnoxious out-spoken character and make it fit this movie so perfectly. His insults are classic.
Unfortunately after this movie Chevy Chase made few quality movies. These days he prefers to do mostly family oriented movies that are mostly not funny. It is sad he has chosen to do so few straight comedies. He has essentially been a comedy legend based on some raunchy movies like this one and Vacation but chooses not to star in these kinds of movies anymore. It is sad. He is one of the funniest people in my generation and he probably could have been even funnier.
And I love the soundtrack. The song by Kenny Loggins, I'm Alright is great and more songs by Eddie Cochran and Earth Wind and fire are great as well. And who could forget that little gopher? He was actually created by George Lucas. Some of the funniest scenes in the movie involve that little gopher. Overall this is a funny movie that has withstood the test of time and will probably be funny to future generations as well.
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