|Index||10 reviews in total|
My brother and I first saw this outrageously-funny comedy back in Summer of 1987 which we rented from a Mom-and-Pop video rental (pre-Blockbuster days). Let me tell you, we continuously rented the video and watched it EVERY SINGLE day with the same hilarious results! Alas, I finally found the movie on E-bay and received it only last week!! David Landsberg and Lorin Dreyfuss really bought down the house with their wacky performances. In my opinion, at least half the so-called "funny films" today can, in no way, shape or form, match this hysterical, hiccup-inducing, over-the-hill comedy! Two bumblers, one an honest simpleton who keeps getting fired from every job in NYC because he' s so caught up in detective novels, and the other, a sleazier and witty but somewhat incompetent con-artist who reels him into his shady, fire-trap, nickel-and-dime 'Detective School', suddenly get caught up in international intrigue involving a beautiful woman, 'Old World' traditions and the Italian Mafia, traveling from New York to beautiful Rome and running into all types of comedic obstacles and situations. They start off by posing as tourists with Japanese names after lifting the boarding passes from two unsuspecting Japanese passengers, to foul play aboard an Italy-bound airliner, to the hi-jinx in a Rome museum, masquerading as monks in the Vatican to the nerve-shaking Ferrari escapade....never a dull moment!! They sure don' t make them like that anymore! If you are down in the dumps, I strongly recommend this dosage of massively hysterical humor.
My best friend and I have seen this movie well over one hundred times.
We have it memorized, line by line. We act out scenes from the movie,
and rate each other's performance. We don't even refer to it by the
full title of "Detective School Dropouts" anymore -- long ago we
abbreviated it to "DSDO."
My favorite scene has to be when Paul and Donald steal the Ferrari:
Paul: "slow down!!" Donald: "I can't!" Paul: "would you open your eyes and watch out for those sheep?!"
It's really a pity that Landsberg and Dreyfuss haven't made more movies together, because they had such a hilarious synergy in this one. The scene where Wilson is dressed up in a wedding gown while trying to fend off the unsuspecting Bruno, had me on the floor in tears. Bruno's constant injuries (the knives!!) are a source of much humor. Suffice it to say that this is one hilarious film with some "zany" slapstick humor. It is definitely worth renting, if you can find it. I give this movie a perfect 10!
My family watches this movie every Christmas. It was one of those unkown movies my family started watching one day that just hit our funny bones. The shtick is great. The Japanese passport mix-up is the funniest gag. Also, the soundtrack is so zany that it catches your attention.
Admittedly, this movie falls far short of anything the academy would use as a DVD coaster for the lighting guy backstage. It's terrible. The dialogue and plot is laughably predictable. The camera work is generally sub-par... as if it were the director's first film. At times, it's just plain stupid. So stupid, it can be brilliant - in the same way the Keystone Cops were hilarious. The scene with a stolen Ferrari is absolutely priceless. I don't know if I've ever laughed so hard or rewound a movie so many times. I've been waiting in vain for a DVD version to come out, and my Tivo is always searching. Perhaps you can still catch an old VHS copy on eBay with some persistence. If you watch with the appropriate silly, B-movie attitude, you won't be disappointed.
I think I was ten when I first saw this movie at the theaters and I can honestly say I have never laughed so hard and uncontrollably at any film in my life. Granted, today the movie does look dated and suffers from some poor picture and sound quality (the usual product of the infamous Golan Globus guys) but I urge you to try and see beyond that. This is a small masterpiece. David Landsberg's honest but clumsy Wilson is perfectly balanced by Dreyfuss' seedy, fast-talking... uh sorry I forgot the character's name. Anyway, the movie has several well timed running gags (the hurt hand, the old lady whose pictures are always messed up, etc.) some hilarious chase sequences (my fave being a chase through a movie set), a cheesy yet quirky soundtrack and an overall sense of outrageousness. The plot is just credible enough to make the comedy work and the action sequences are well done but not lended so much weight that they distract. Landsberg and Dreyfuss (both of whom also wrote the film) have a keen sense of comic timing, and play off of each other like pros. (This film also introduced me to the Italian beauty Valeria Golina, several years before Rainman). I've seen Landsberg in the occasional supporting role on TV and in film but I've never seen Dreyfuss before or since (I've read before that he's Richard's brother and that's certainly reasonable). It's a shame these two didn't make more films, and in a way it's sad that this film didn't do better, and yet now I can officially refer to it as a forgotten, hidden treasure. Good luck finding this film on VHS, much less on DVD but if you do, check it out.
This is definitely a shtick-flick. A down and out dick pins up a card at the laundramat advertising "detective lessons". You can guess the type of guy that shows up for the class. Right! A guy with no class! The two end up mixed up in international intrigue to save the kidnapped daughter of a cheese mafia baron. Excellent sight gags, a chase scene that takes us all over Italy and a hysterical running gag make this a movie a can't miss. Forget prosac, rent this movie instead!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This hilarious comedy from the producing team of Golan-Globus is
probably the best, but sadly obscure film to come out from the Cannon
label, even for a movie to come out in 1986.
David Landsberg stars as Donald Wilson, a nebbish nerd whose obsession with crime novels forces him to lose a string of jobs after one comic mishap after another. One day, he notices a sign on a phone booth advertising to be a detective. The agency responsible is Miller Detective Agency run by Paul Miller (Lorin Dreyfuss, older brother of Richard), a slick high-roller whose business is in financial trouble because Paul has owed money to a lot of people and some will stop at nothing to get it. Donald enrolls into Paul's so- called "class" and learns lock picking, firearms, and even writing checks and paying money to Paul for owing purposes. One day, they stumble across a kidnapping plot involving a young couple, Carlo and Catherina madly in love that's hampered by the rivalry of two Italian mafia families, the Zanettis and the Lombardis. The Lombardi patriarch assign brutish hit-man Bruno (exploitation favorite George Eastman to kidnap Catherina, who is in New York visiting her cousin, Mario. Donald and Paul go to the house she's in on a whim as part of a fake dog newspaper ad. Catherina gives Donald a valuable pennant, but Bruno notices this and chases him and Paul out of the house. They decide to take the pennant back to Mario, who's boarded a plane back home to Italy. They then find themselves in the country and must put an end to the 200 year old feud between the families and reunite Carlo and Catherina.
Landsberg and Dreyfuss, who also wrote the screenplay, have terrific chemistry together and the film contains a lot of funny slapstick gags, many of which Bruno gets the brunt of. It also includes a wild car chase through the streets of Rome, when a movie set and a city market get obliterated, as well as a daring foot chase in the Leaning Tower of Piza. Even Donald gets to drive a Ferrari that ends in a bad crash.
The two guys would write and star in another film the following year, DUTCH TREAT, that sadly wasn't as well-received as this one.
I worked with Loren and David in their next movie "Dutch Treat". This
movie actually has a better overall quality than Dutch Treat. About the
only action as far as chase scenes in Dutch, was the two idiots on a
tandem bicycle running from a bunch of guys, one armed with a meat
cleaver. Detective has many automotive chase scenes around Italy. Great
shots of old Rome and Pisa.
I traded a DVD of Dutch Treat for a DVD of this one and think I did okay.
I recommend Detective School Dropouts. Good clean fun with lots of mayhem and maiming. One hell of a better ending than Dutch Treat, too.
This is one of the best comedy movies of all time that i have seen, up there with the likes of History of the world, Space balls, The naked gun series & the police academy series. The movie is so fast paced & so incredibly funny that there are very few words to describe it. One scene is better than the other, what with the copier machine scene to the mannequin scene, the Grey poodle fufu to the car chase in Italy. Who can forget the scene from the museum & the leaning tower of Pisa chase. Also the lines "They don't make monks like they used to" & "This is America, we live on bad checks." There is simply nothing you cannot like about this movie.....except that it is not available in a DVD format.
This movie probably cost around three hundred thousand..of course, that's
I loved this movie. It was really funny. They successfully and thoroughly insulted everyone!
The humor wasn't really all that original nor well thought out, but it was well implemented.
I would probably give this movie around a 6, and say that it's enjoyable to watch. It's hard to find in the video stores, but I have seen it on TV twice in my lifetime.
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