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Laughter on the 23rd Floor (2001)

TV Movie  |  R  |   |  Comedy  |  26 May 2001 (USA)
6.4
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 322 users  
Reviews: 12 user | 1 critic

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Title: Laughter on the 23rd Floor (TV Movie 2001)

Laughter on the 23rd Floor (TV Movie 2001) on IMDb 6.4/10

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Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. See more awards »
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Cast

Credited cast:
...
...
...
Ira Stone
...
Milt Fields
...
Harry Prince
Kristi Angus ...
Darlene Drew
Ardon Bess ...
Cecil
Colin Fox ...
Cal Weebs
...
Faye
Frank Proctor ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
...
Lucus Brickman
...
Cal's Secretary
Robert Bidaman ...
Brad
Ian D. Clark ...
Doctor
...
Dennis
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Storyline

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Taglines:

TV's top comic has everything. Except his sanity.

Genres:

Comedy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

26 May 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Most Original Comedy  »

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| (archive footage)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Richard Benjamin previously directed a similar film, My Favorite Year (1982). Both films feature a young comedy writer on a 1950's TV show that is based on Your Show of Shows (1950), and stars a Sid Caesar-like comedian. Mark Linn-Baker, who plays one of the writers in "Laughter," played the young writer in My Favorite Year (1982), which was produced (uncredited) by Mel Brooks, a fellow writer with Neil Simon on Caesar's 1950's TV show Your Show of Shows (1950). See more »

Goofs

There are a few brief inserts of The Lawrence Welk Show, and Lawrence Welk's voice is heard saying "thank you, Myron" after a voice-over introduction. The announcer's voice was not that of Myron Floren, a band member who often provided transitions between musical numbers, but that of the regular announcer who opened each show. See more »

Quotes

Carol: I'm trying to get pregnant.
Brian: Ask your husband. Why should we do everything?
See more »

Connections

Follows Brighton Beach Memoirs (1986) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Only some mild laughter in this ponderous television adaptation

I have always found Neil Simon's earlier works far more satisfying than his middle and later periods. It's understandable that comic writers such as Simon and Woody Allen felt the need to develop, having become tired of churning out pungent one liners. The transition from pure comic, to serious writer, albeit with a comic base, is a tricky one. Both Simon and Allen have on occasion handled this fusion of elements well, but by and large the challenge has not been well met by either.

"Laughter on the 23rd Floor" being a reminiscence of Simon's television writing days on the legendary "Show of Shows" was largely a comic piece when produced on Broadway. Since most of the characters in the play are loosely based on a group of writers famed for their wit, the play should have been a hilarious riot. While it made for an enjoyable evening in the theater, one couldn't help feeling it had somewhat missed the mark.

For the television adaptation Simon has turned "Laughter on the 23rd Floor" into a supposedly deeper and more serious work, in his portrayal of comic Max Prince. Depicting the complexities that make up the psyche of a comic is not an easy task but Simon's depiction of Max Prince does not go far beyond the clichés one would expect. Nathan Lane pulls out all the stops, but at times he seems to be unwittingly doing a Zero Mostel imitation. The biggest let down is that despite a group of fine and seasoned performers and many one liners, even the comic bits are not as funny as they should be.

Those who have a particular fondness for the period of 50's television and the tremendous talents around at the time are likely to be disappointed.


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