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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
A Dangerfield Romp, 2 September 2001

Back to School is Rodney's vehicle for an hour and a half of fun and quick laughs. He shares writing credits, stars, and appears in just about every scene.

I absolutely was in stitches with some of the one-liners, and visuals, but I won't divulge even one of them!!!

The casting was probably done by several people expressing opposing styles of acting. There didn't seem to be any gel there.

Performances: Sally Kellerman (the love interest), Adrienne Barbeau (briefly as the unscrupulous wife), Burt Young (same act, no matter the role), a baby-faced Robert Downey Jr (who was sorely underused, and should've been cast as Rodney's son), and cameo roles by Kurt Vonnegut Jr, M Emmet Walsh, and a hillarious Sam Kinison.

Rodney also takes a sarcastic poke at the ivory towers, apparently echoing some autobigraphical sentiment towards self-made men, such as himself, who make it big despite not having fancy diplomas to back them up. One such scene puts his street smarts squarley at odds with a hooty professor who gets a lesson himself in how to open a manufacturing plant in the real world.

If you like Rodney Dangerfield, rent this movie.

4 out of 7 people found the following review useful:
A Timeless Classic From Another Era, 22 August 2001

Astaire and Rogers at the height of their popularity. In 1936 Americans thought of the Navy as a place for song and dance. WWII was still a few years away. Fred and Ginger dance up the town.

The plot is decent, but who cares... By the way, notice the cameo roles for Betty Grable and a glamorous Lucile Ball.

A load of Irving Berlin songs, including the famous "Let's Face the Music and Dance". In that scene, Ginger's heavy swooping dress smacks Fred in the face during one of her spins and almost knocks him unconscious. Fred insisted on keeping the take as the dancing was superb nonetheless.

Ginger once commented that she was a better dancer than Fred, since she had to do all the same moves, in step, and backwards...

Come to think of it, Fred's voice was nice too. The man was effortless in motion.

Here's a movie to cozy up on the couch with a loved-one, kick off the shoes, and enjoy the entertainment.

109 out of 129 people found the following review useful:
A political and social thriller/drama ahead of its time., 20 August 2001

John Frankenheimer's surrealistic direction and George Axelrod's adaptation of the 1959 book by the same name offer Laurence Harvey a career defining role.

Set in 1950's, A Korean War veteran Raymond Shaw(Harvey) returns home to a medal of honor for rescuing his POW platoon from behind Chinese lines and back to safety. One of the returning soldiers, (played effectively by Frank Sinatra) however, has recurring dreams of his platoon being brainwashed and Shaw committing acts of murder.

He eventually convinces army brass that Shaw is still a puppet of his Communist-Marxist operators.

Angela Lansbury, (although barely a few years older than Harvey was at the time) plays his mother in a tour de force role. She absolutely captivates and steals every scene she is in, playing a very complex role that needs to convince the viewer of many things without much dialogue.

There's a rich cast of characters, including Janet Leigh, Henry Silva, James Edwards, and a painfully accurate James Gregory. Each character weaves through the methodical subplots and tapestry of Frankenheimer's masterful "Hitchcockian" pace.

I won't give away the plot, but dear readers, allow me to sat that this one is really worth watching--until the nail-biting and chilling conclusion.

There are many undertones in this film -- political, sexual, class and power, and social. You will want to view this film several times to approach it from different perspectives.