Man on the Moon is a biographical movie on the late comedian Andy Kaufman. Kaufman, along with his role on Taxi (1978), was famous for being the self-declared Intergender Wrestling Champion of the world. After beating women time and time again, Jerry Lawler (who plays himself in the movie), a professional wrestler, got tired of seeing all of this and decided to challenge Kaufman to a match. In most of the matches the two had, Lawler prevailed with the piledriver, which is a move by spiking an opponent head-first into the mat. One of the most famous moments in this feud was in the early 80s when Kaufman threw coffee on Lawler on Late Night with David Letterman (1982), got into fisticuffs with Lawler, and proceeded to sue NBC. Written by
Eli Boorstein <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The wrestling match between Lawler and Kaufman was filmed at L.A.'s Olympic Auditorium, which was standing in for the famed Memphis Mid-South Coliseum, the site of the real-life Jerry Lawler and Andy Kaufman matches. When Lawler arrived at the Olympic Auditorium to film the match, he was shocked to find hundreds of "Southern" extras dressed in straw hats and overalls, not at all resembling the real Mid-South crowds of the early 1980s. An exasperated Lawler pulled the filmmakers aside and reminded them that Memphis is a blues town, not a backwoods one, and that he never saw anybody dressed like that at the real Mid-South Coliseum. The extras were then instructed to remove their straw hats. See more »
Numerous anachronisms can be chalked up to artistic decisions;
the film intentionally plays fast and loose with the timeline. For example, the Carnegie Hall performance was years before Andy Kaufman's cancer diagnosis; the title song wasn't written until after Andy's death; Andy didn't meet Lynne Margulies at a wrestling match; Stacy Carter hadn't met Jerry Lawler before Andy died (and certainly hadn't married him). Andy performs his imitation of President Jimmy Carter (elected 1976) before Saturday Night Live begins. See more »
Hello. I am Andy and I would like to thank you for coming to my movie. I wish it was *better*, you know, but... it is so stupid! It's terrible! I do not even like it. All of the most important things in my life are changed around and mixed up for dramatic purposes. So, I decided to cut out all of the baloney! Now the movie is much *shorter*.
In fact, this is the end of the movie. Thank you very much.
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"Man on The Moon", indeed. I remember seeing Andy Kaufman's act on TV as a teenager, and I admit, I wrote him off as another comedian, with an incredibly expressive face and a flair for silliness. Years later, I'm watching him on "Taxi" reruns. I admired the easiness where he could go from loving Latka to malicious Vic with ease, and I thought, "Wow, this guy really loves what he does". And then I watch "Man on The Moon". Reality check.
This picture, I believe, redeems Andy Kaufman. He endured five grueling years in "Taxi" just so he could get some laughs out of people. He did wrestling stints just for the heck of it. He came real close of hitting rock bottom just to save himself at the end. He died of cancer at the age of 35, ridiculously young, and even then his own family didn't buy it. He lived misunderstood, and died misunderstood. And years later, he gets a biopic. Just what he deserves. It is sad that many people will know Andy's talent and understand him only after watching this film. But still, let's face it, at the end he did get the last laugh.
The true cornerstone in this film is Jim Carrey. Yes, you've heard endless reviews about him immersing himself into Andy, not just playing him. But this is acting beyond your dreams, trust me. Especially when he plays Andy's foreign character, Carrey lived and breathed Kaufman air. This is the movie where his silly-putty face comes handy, as it seems to help Jim turn into Andy. (If only we could do something about those teeth...) NEWSFLASH FOR THE ACADEMY: Jim Carrey can act!!! I remember Tom Hanks beginning with the same kind of movies that Jim did: loud, colorful, goofy and silly (films like "Bachelor Party" come to mind). Then he did "Big", then came "Philadelphia". When is Carrey's "Philadelphia" coming along? I can't wait to see him at the Academy Awards this year.
Man on the moon, indeed.
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