6.7/10
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68 user 38 critic

Silent Movie (1976)

PG | | Comedy | 16 June 1976 (USA)
A film director and his strange friends struggle to produce the first major silent feature film in forty years.

Director:

Mel Brooks

Writers:

Mel Brooks (screenplay), Ron Clark (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Nominated for 4 Golden Globes. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mel Brooks ... Mel Funn
Marty Feldman ... Marty Eggs
Dom DeLuise ... Dom Bell
Sid Caesar ... Studio Chief
Harold Gould ... Engulf
Ron Carey ... Devour
Bernadette Peters ... Vilma Kaplan
Carol Arthur ... Pregnant Lady
Liam Dunn ... Newsvendor
Fritz Feld ... Maitre d'
Chuck McCann ... Studio Gate Guard
Valerie Curtin ... Intensive Care Nurse
Yvonne Wilder ... Studio Chief's Secretary
Harry Ritz ... Man in Tailor Shop
Charlie Callas ... Blindman
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Storyline

Aspiring filmmakers Mel Funn, Marty Eggs and Dom Bell go to a financially troubled studio with an idea for a silent movie. In an effort to make the movie more marketable, they attempt to recruit a number of big name stars to appear, while the studio's creditors attempt to thwart them. The film contains only one word of dialogue, spoken by an unlikely source. Written by Scott Renshaw <as.idc@forsythe.stanford.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Release Date:

16 June 1976 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Silent Movie Plus See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,400,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$36,145,695
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Crossbow Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Carol Arthur: Dom DeLuise's wife plays the pregnant woman in the beginning. See more »

Goofs

When Mel Funn walks into Big Picture Studios to sell his idea of a silent movie to the CEO, his fingers are supposed to be stuck crossed together. For a few seconds after entering the office his fingers return to normal before shaking the CEO's hand. See more »

Quotes

Mel Funn: [seen as an insert title] Mr. Marceau, how would you like to appear in the first silent movie made in nearly fifty years?
Marcel Marceau: [in French, the only spoken line in the film] Non!
Dom Bell: [seen as an insert title after Mel hangs up the phone] What did he say?
Mel Funn: [seen as an insert title] I don't know. I don't speak French!
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the opening credits, a colored print version of the 20th Century Fox logo is shown on a billboard, past which Mel Brooks drives. Then the credits begin. See more »

Alternate Versions

A reissue in 1978 (entitled "Silent Movie Plus") added additional scenes not in the original theatrical version. One scene reportedly had a cameo by Peter Frampton. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Omen Legacy (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

I Left My Heart In San Fransisco
(uncredited)
Written by George Cory (as Cory George C. Jr.) and Douglass Cross (as Cross Douglass)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Brooks' overlooked gem
30 November 2004 | by jrs-8See all my reviews

When one speaks of Mel Brooks the talk immediately goes to either "Blazing Saddles" or "Young Frankenstein" or "The Producers." How often do you hear mention of "Silent Movie?" After watching this film again just yesterday I can say that this film is also a masterpiece and ranks on the same lines of the previous films.

"Silent Movie" is deceptively simple in plot. A washed up movie director (Brooks) comes up with an idea to make a silent movie to help save the studio that once employed him. Once given the okay by studio chief Sid Caesar, Brooks and his sidekicks Marty Feldman and Dom DeLuise set out to find five superstars to help make the movie a hit. And that's all there is to it - plot wise. What Brooks does is fill every single scene with great ideas. Shots that have absolutely nothing to do with the story are thrown in to get a laugh. Brooks hits the bullseye most of the time. I don't think I went more then a minute without laughing throughout.

Another master stroke is John Morris' rousing score that fills the movie from beginning to end. Without it the movie would have failed. And, yes, it truly is a silent movie save for one spoken word which most people probably are aware of anyway. It's another classic Mel Brooks moment.

"Silent Movie" followed "Young Frankenstein" which followed "Blazing Saddles." It's safe to say Brooks was at his peak during this period. His quality of films began to dip after "Silent Movie" starting with the amusing but overblown "High Anxiety." But we still have this time period to savor when Brooks may have been the best (if not then equal to Woody Allen) comedy director of his time.


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