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Shakes plods about his duties as party clown, and uses all of his free time getting seriously drunk. Binky, another clown, wins the spot on a local kiddie show, which depresses Shakes even more, and his boss threatens him with unemployment if he can't get his act under control. When someone murders Shakes' boss and makes it look like Shakes did it, he goes undercover, posing as a hated mime, and tries to find information that will clear his name. Written by
Ed Sutton <email@example.com>
The movie poster when I saw "Shakes" in the theatre touted it as the "Citizen Kane of Alcoholic Clown Movies," clearly a better analogy than the "Gone with the Wind" one touted here. This is one strange fantasy where clowns hang out in their own bars watching clown shows on TV while tossing back shots. The bars are segregated by clown type, with bars for rodeo clowns and bars for party clowns with no mixing tolerated. Robin Williams' bit part as a mime instructor is some of his best work every, enhanced (as all Robins work should be) by it's brevity. Great work, Bobcat! (The kids in the sprinkler scene is great, a lovingly filmed, uncharacteristicly joyful moment in this very, very dark comedy.) Rumor has it that clown groups picketed theatres when this movie was released, claiming that it was defamatory to clowns.
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