Steve Martin's first network special for NBC. The show is half concert footage (shot at the Universal Amphitheatre in LA) and half sketches. Sketches include: Martin as "Turtle Boy," ... See full summary »
Joe Mulholland, Head of Production at a Hollywood studio, makes a rather fool-hardy promise to a dying friend. He undertakes to make a major movie using the title - if not the content - of ... See full summary »
Seattle television commentator Martin Crane has a domestic life worth reporting on air. Notable character innovation: a teenage son who operates very successful businesses from his room and makes loans to his parents.
A small screen sequel/remake that served as the pilot for a TV series that never happened, 'The Jerk, Too' lacks the sheer comic invention of the original. It doesn't contain enough laughs to fill ninety minutes, let alone a string of episodes. Steve Martin and Carl Reiner wisely found something better to do with their time, and as a result this forgotten spin-off has no real reason to exist.
Mark Blankfield takes Martin's place as Navin Johnson, a naive dunce who leaves home to travel to the wedding of pen pal Stacey Nelkin. Along the way, Blankfield meets up with hobo Ray Walston and his friends, and gets involved in various scrapes, most of which involve him winning card games. Then Nelkin's fiancé turns out to be a nasty piece of work, and the utterly expected happens. It's a middle-of-the-road story that doesn't have the imagination of the first movie and trundles along with no real surprises.
This is an alternate version of the story that treats Navin as a hero instead of a complete idiot. Still, although the inspired silliness of the original is nowhere in sight, Blankfield keeps things going. He overdoes the wide-eyed naivety, but some of his antics (falling in a punch bowl, walking down steps while tied to a chair) raise laughs that the screenplay can't generate. There's some fun stuff between Blankfield and butler Barrie Ingham, and his relationship with Nelkin is kind of sweet too. But the script falls back on too often on cheap laughs, like people getting smacked with doors, falling over and getting hit in the face with cream pies. I like slapstick when it's done well. Here, it isn't.
'The Jerk' was hit-and-miss, but there was genius at work in that movie, something that can't be said for this follow-up. It's likable enough, and wanders along inoffensively, but the funniest joke on offer here doesn't get the laughs of the worst joke in the original.
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