Tunnel Vision (1976) Poster

(1976)

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Dated yet intellectual raunchy comedy
blackxmas6 July 2001
If you don't think today's American comedies have been dumbed down, you should give TUNNEL VISION a look. Crude and tasteless, extremely dated, but very, very smart. It's amazing how many jokes you miss because here, it's all in the writing. Sure, kids today won't get a lot of the 70's pop and political references, but if you actually paid attention in your history and political science classes (as well as TNN and TVLAND), it shouldn't be a problem. Can you say that about TOMCATS and AMERICAN PIE? The wraparound segments of a federal hearing pertaining to the effects on the nation for watching the Tunnel Vision network are eerily prophetic given the current Media Marketing Responsibility Act Lieberman and Clinton and Kohl are trying to push. Politically Correct viewers may balk at some of the bits on race, but the film skewers everybody, plus it's obvious that there's more going on then just a cheap laugh at different minority (and majority) groups' expense. TUNNEL VISION is more than just an old sketch comedy movie from the 70's, and it's sad that most modern comedies can't approach the cerebral humor on display here.
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8/10
Not Bad
Dashner16 December 2002
This one is definitely a product of the 1970's with it's post- Watergate and Viet Nam cynicism. Perhaps it's a bit dated, but does a great job capturing the smarmy quality of TV commercials of the era, especially because it uses some of the best voice over talent of the time (Ernie Anderson, Danny Dark, etc.). Look for pre-fame bit parts by John Candy, Chevy Chase, Ron Silver, and director Betty Thomas.
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7/10
Dark Humored Sketch Comedy Film
justinrivers25 March 2007
Tunnel Vision is a unique sort of grindhouse film. It is a feature-length collage of comedy sketches, loosely tied together by a simple (and not terribly important) framing mechanism. The production values are rather low, very rough around the edges in the same way the Python TV show was, but the humor here comes across nonetheless. Those of you with delicate taste, beware. The comedy in this film is extremely dark, savage, and mercilessly satirical. It takes on the the TV-junkie generation, ripping into network television with energy and vehemence. If you like dark humor and satire, like Terry Southern or Robert Downey, Sr., you will probably like this film. Just don't expect glossy visuals or a strong central narrative.
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4/10
Prophetic but not Good ... i'm serious, prohphetic!!
angels_egg128 December 2004
Saturday Night Live, National Lampoon, and SCTV alumnus are all together in a sometimes funny sketch film.

However, it is very interesting to watch now, at the start of 2005. Twenty years after this movie is supposed to take place, look at how many of their gags have become absolutely true: There is a mock movie trailer, that probably wasn't even clever at the time, for something called "The Pregnant Man" which came true with Arnold Schwarzenegger's dumb movie "Junior" There is a commercial spoof, that probably wasn't even clever at the time, for something featuring Sammy Davis Jr. and Jackie Onasis called "Celebrity Wrestling" which has now come true with a popular show called "Celebrity Boxing" There is a mock movie trailer, that probably wasn't even clever at the time, that features John Candy in a movie about a severed head. Watch this trailer and look how similar it's shots and plot are to Frank Hellenlotter's Basket Case!! And finally there is an ad for a late late show documentary about "a dead dream, the only two left ..." The name of the documentary is ... THE LAST HIPPIES! LOL.

Four prophecies come true!
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4/10
Stephen Feinberg (Played the Proctologist and was one of the writers)
joel-linker19 May 2006
Stephen Feinberg, who Played the Proctologist and was one of the writers of the movie, passed away in early 2006. I met Steve in Portland in 1993, it was a year latter when he told me that he had been a writer in Hollywood years earlier, working mostly on TV promos. He asked me not to see 'Tunnel Vision', but it was too late, I had seen it already! Actually I had seen it years before, when it was released. At that time I didn't think it was that bad a movie. However seeing it as an adult my opinion was somewhat different. Yes is is a bit puerile as well as dated. Steve admitted it was not a very good movie. That said he was just a little proud of 'The Proctologist' sketch.
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ONE OF THE THEN-CLASSIC STONER FILMS
EL BUNCHO23 April 2002
Warning: Spoilers
SPOILER WARNING (but you'll thank me for it)

I first saw TUNNELVISION at a party back in 1983, and the effects of the intoxicants that were rampant in my 18-year-old brain led me to belive that it was a comedic masterpiece. NOT SO, I say! Bear in mind that this was made at a point in the seventies when it seemed like everyone (including the president) was stoned out of their minds, and most of these gags are geared to a seriously baked audience. Sadly, that type of humor doesn't necessarily work if you aren't stoned, and out of the seventy-five minute running time, I'd estimate that there are maybe 20 minutes of solid laughs. Take my advice and don't miss:

REMEMBER WHEN- a gameshow where the contestants are chosen by how foolish and embarrassing their outfits are (Betty Thomas in pasties and a g-string and Joe Flaherty in a ludicrous red dress), with questions asking them to remember the various crimes and degradations that they have committed.

RAMON & SONYA- an "All In The Family"-style sitcom about a bunch of foul-mouthed, incestuous gypsies living in New York city.

THE BIG BEAT- a wish fulfillment segment reminiscent of Don Kirschener's Rock Concert, only here the audience gets to beat the living hell out of the various performers.

HOW TO BE BUTCH- perhaps the ultimate PSA, and hilariously self-explanatory.
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2/10
Great cast, bad movie
justicealan30 January 2005
This movie is a prime example of squandering great resources in a film. You've got future SNL and SCTV stars in their prime, such as John Candy, Chevy Chase, Laraine Newman, Al Franken,Tom Davis and Joe Flaherty essentially making 70 minutes of coarse, uninspired fart and racist jokes. The concept of a network from the future subverting society could have really been taken to some interesting extremes, but instead right out the gate, makes a lame, juvenile proctology joke and stays in that vein of humor the whole way.Seek out the earlier and much more subversive and witty Groove Tube or the later, hilarious Kentucky Fried Movie. This movie is only for those who want to see a time capsule of bad 70's sketch comedy movies.
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Not quite Network
drosse673 April 2003
1976 saw the release of this movie and the Oscar-winning classic Network. There really is no argument as to which is the better film, but the idea of American viewers becoming glued to their TV sets because of an "anything goes" TV station doesn't seem too far-fetched today. Of the skit comedies of the '70s (Kentucky Fried Movie and Groove Tube being the others), this is the weakest. But it has some moments. The competing California candidates is a funny running gag, but the French chef is definitely not and unfortunately shows up throughout the movie. If you want to compare the success of these three films, you can use the filmmakers' later work as a gauge: The makers of Kentucky Fried Movie went on to Animal House, The Blues Brothers, Trading Places, Airplane, Police Squad and Top Secret. The makers of The Groove Tube went on to Modern Problems (and Richard Belzer went on to radio). The makers of Tunnel Vision went on to Bachelor Party and Moving Violations. You do the math.
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10/10
The Beginning of Sophomoric Comedy
BonzoDog8 September 1999
By today's standards, this movie is crude, filled with drug and lame sex humor, and just plain silly. But in 1976, this was the segue from National Lampoon to Saturday Night Live-type "sophomoric" comedy. This was also precursor to the Zucker brothers' "Kentucky Fried Movie", "Airplane" and "Police Squad" types of movies that make fun of both the subject and the medium.
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5/10
Tunnel Vision is very uneven as a revue of television satire, but it has its moments
tavm20 July 2013
Warning: Spoilers
In reviewing various movies or TV specials featuring "SNL"ers in chronological order, I'm now at 1976 with the release of something called Tunnel Vision. Some years before this, The Groove Tube came out which featured many segments that were originally presented in a revue in New York called Channel One of which one of the players was Chevy Chase. Here Chase plays himself in a mental health PSA. The symptoms listed were pretty amusing though I was disappointed Chase wasn't the one who mentioned them with the announcer of many of the other skits being the one who did. Like that sketch, many of the other ones were shot in the Los Angeles area which was where many of the original "SNL" auditions took place around the time this film was made. So besides Chevy, we also see Laraine Newman (who plays Sonja in an unfunny Norman Lear-type sitcom called "Romon and Sonja"),and Al Franken & Tom Davis in an amusing bit about personality changes in a can. Also, future "SCTV" stars John Candy and Joe Flaherty (credited as Joseph O'Flaherty here) are around with Candy carrying a dismembered head in a "Get Head!" spot which is funny by the title alone and Flaherty in a hilarious sketch with future "Hill Street Blues" star Betty Thomas called "Remember When" which has the host recounting each degrading memory of both contestants including Joe's rape events and Ms. Thomas' beating of her children! Oh, and they're both in degrading costumes! I also found funny a PSA spot about a young woman's attempt to become butch. And I also liked a running gag about a blindfolded French chef constantly bumping into people. Most of the other segments weren't as good, but I give the filmmakers points for trying to shock its target audience into laughter with the excuse of having this take place 10 years into the future with the congressional hearings of the investigation into the title network and its effects on its audience with Howard Hesseman playing the head of the committee, a couple of years before his best known role as Dr. Johnny Fever on "WKRP in Cinncinati". So on that note, Tunnel Vision is worth a look.
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Sporadically amusing TV parody
gortx13 July 2007
Warning: Spoilers
Right along the heels of THE GROOVE TUBE and KENTUCKY FRIED MOVIE, came this foray into catch-all feature length spoof movies. TUNNEL VISION may have the most coherent plot of the three, but, alas, also the fewest laughs.

I hate the term "dated", but TUNNEL VISION certainly qualifies if you must use the term. Postulating a future where an unregulated TV network could literally become the opiate of the masses, TUNNEL VISION, has the misfortune of pre-dating an era where cable and (later) satellite TV (not to mention the internet) made such raunchy material commonplace on the airwaves (or on your desktop). That fact isn't what truly hurts the film, it's the scatter-shot attempts at humor that too often fails that does.

Indeed, the wrap-around story is what works best. Set in the year 1985, the TV network becomes the center of a Government inquiry into its massive popularity (and alleged negative consequences). There are numerous Nixon jokes and the like that, as is often the case in such "futuristic" endeavors, play much more to the thoughts and fears of the year the film was MADE in as opposed to the year it is SET in. Some of the jokes require a I LOVE THE 70'S primer to "get". More disappointingly, the low budget production design makes little or no attempt to depict a film 20 years in the future. The dark finale fits in well with the Post-Watergate conspiratorial era.

A few funny gags, not to mention appearances by a virtual Who's Who (and Who was to become WHO's) such as Al Franken, Howard Hesseman, John Candy, Joe Flaherty, Laraine Newman, Betty Thomas (a surprisingly sexy performance), Chevy Chase etc. will keep you watching, if not laughing out loud. Considering the supposedly taboo-breaking nature of the Tunnel Vision TV network, there is precious little nudity to go along with the language, violence, and subject matter. In a trivia note, the one full-on nude scene is by Oscar Nominated Film Editor Dody Dorn (MEMENTO).
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Dated But Influential Sketch Comedy
G-Man-2511 September 2000
It's extremely dated, dopey and wildly uneven, but there are still some pretty good laughs to be had in this short collection of skits that take a look at what "television of the future" will be like (?) Even if the humor isn't your cup of tea, it's worth a look just to spot the large cast of then-unknown and up-and-coming comedy talent. Rent it with the similarly-themed "The Groove Tube" for an evening of mindless juvenile fun.
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3/10
lousy short comedy skits that forget to be funny, and lots of bigotry
FieCrier8 June 2005
I missed the beginning but I did see most of it. A friend got it on DVD in the cheap room at FYE.

The skits are all very short, and yet most of them are still too long. The majority of them, they seem to have forgotten to have something funny! Quite a lot of racist/sexist/"homophobic" humor in it, skits based on stereotypes, or skits which use racist terms for people.

I'm trying to remember anything I thought was funny in it, and I'm having trouble.... The logo for the Tunnel Vision network is a lipsticked mouth with an eyeball in it. The mouth opens and closes over the eye like eyelids. Kind of creepy.

What a disappointment. Most of the actors went on to better things, and it's lucky this bomb didn't hold them back.
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10/10
Tunnel Vision (1976) shows problems and objections with uncensored TV and other media!
texallennyc1 January 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Tunnel Vision (1976) shows problems and objections with uncensored TV and other media!

It was a joke independent feature movie house film made shortly after the counterculture revolution of the 1960's (which spilled into the early 1970's) ended.

People were calling for more freedom from censorship, and they got it.

Tunnel Vision (1976) jokingly examined the proposals for "absolutely no censorship" in a "reductum ad absurdum" manner.

It showed intentionally ridiculous violations of traditional censorship rules and traditions. Intentionally violated many then (middle 1970's) still "sacred" political and social taboos and rules.

It implied legitimatization of famously unacceptable subjects and topics, and was, arguably, heroic in breaking new ground regarding all this. It tried to be offensive (Lennie Bruce style) for the sake of being offensive, and for the sake of making a point about the absurdity and arbitrary nature of the entire subject of taboos.

At the end of the movie, the founder and CEO of the fictional "Tunnel Vision TV Uncensored Network" is shot to death on television, Lee Harvey Oswrld style.

It shows that intolerance leads to violence and tragedy, not matter how illegal intolerance is declared to be, and how much the government and other oversight forces (such as religion, etc.) objects to intolerance and promises to punish those who are intolerant. No matter how fairly those who give offense are treated and how permissive the "new society" where tolerance is declared the new supreme law of the land is, the sudden and unexpected removal of old taboos and rules of censorship will always result in violence and even human death.

The movie is a comedy.

Even so, it is intentionally offensive and makes an important and valuable political and social statement about the subject of traditional taboos, censorship, and inteolerance, and the inevitable fate of any person or group of people who purpose to change things, break the old rules, and "liberate the world from the shackles of intolerant censorship." This may be a noble goal, but those who pursue the goal of a "censorship free, totally tolerant society" will pay a big price for their undoubted heroism. Food for thought.

No wonder "prudence" is included as one of the eight traditional Cardinal Virtues.

---------------------------------

Written January 1, 2018 by Tex (David) Allen, movie history writer. More about Tex Allen by visiting WWW.IMDb.Com, world's largest movie, TV, and celebrities information database website owned by Amazon.Com. This movie review is the 122nd movie review written by Tex Allen and published by IMDb.Com. -------------------------------------------------
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5/10
tunnel vision is blind to comedy
tdrish3 October 2017
I didn't like it. After being a fan of the wacky comedies in this category, such as Kentucky Fried Movie, Groove Tube, and Amazon Women On The Moon, I thought Tunnel Vision would knock it out of the park, especially since I found Neal Isreals name attached to the project. Sad stuff. I had high expectations from you, Neal...but, I won't knock you around too much. After all, this was your earlier work, and you're obviously not the only one I blame for this farce. Better examples of this genre have been made, as stated above. Kentucky Fried Movie reigns supreme in outrageous humor that nobody would have the balls to make today. Tunnel Vison follows the same formula as these films, however, it is much more organized, following an uncensored TV channel from morning light, right up to the signing off screen at midnight. There lies the problem...who asked for it to be organized? Many of us enjoyed the random, unpredictable skits and sketches the films had to offer. Why did you screw that up, Tunnel Vison? Maybe because your blind to comedy, that's the way I see it. Very few chuckles, very few laughs, this movie ranks last on my list that I would ever want to watch again. What world are we living in, anyways, where we put a TV network on trial just because they're scraping in millions of viewers, and leaving other networks with none? Did they run out of REAL cases to take in, or what? The entire movie remains an unforgivable mess, and to think of all the great stars it has. More sad stuff. It doesn't even come close to being as funny as Groove Tube, which I will watch any day of the week. Clocked in at just under 70 minutes, it will feel like 70 hours by the time you get through it, IF you get through it. Even more sad stuff! Tunnel Vision, laugh or get off the pot? I got a better idea. Why don't you take this entire movie, and flush it down the toilet, and don't forget to wipe.
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8/10
Very Funny and Extremely Prophetic
elliottjana123 September 2015
I first watched this movie when in came out in the '70s. Of course, in those days we often watched movies while, let's say, in a cosmic mood and state of mind. Anyway, I remembered it as being absolutely hysterical. It was so in tune with what was happening then and so politically incorrect that you took a double take. I was extremely happy to see that I could still purchase it and did so. I mean it when I say "you had to be there." I can see where it would not appeal to the younger audiences of today and would horrify some of the older viewers. Still, I can't wait to get it in the mail. If you "get" a kind of bent humor then you will really LYAO at this movie. TunnelVision and The Groove Tube were the two funniest movies I can remember seeing from that period of my life.
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1/10
No stars, thumbs down, bomb, turkey, dud, boo - you get the idea
rinter-126 December 2006
This is the worst movie I ever paid to see and with the exception of "They Saved Hitler's Brain" the worst movie I have ever seen period. When this movie came out I was a big fan of SNL and SCTV and therefore was anticipating what I thought would be the funniest movie that could be produced since it did not have the restrictions the TV improv shows must deal with.

The writers must have thought we will throw in some grossness, some flatulence jokes, some cheap sex and hey we have a risky side splitting laughable comedy. The game show skits are nothing more than cheap unimaginable take offs on Let's Make a Deal with stupid grossness. The sit com take off involving the single girl and her boyfriend was just plain bad high school humor. The stun gun advertisement was suitable humor for Seasame Street. The LA subway skit was bland humor using tasteless bloodiness. The french chef walking around blind constantly uttering "there is no difference" with a french accent was, well you get my point.

The only funny skit involved Chevy Chase which lasted for a whole minute. This means you get 60 seconds of entertainment in this movie. Oh yea I've read the comments about the entire country being stoned in the 1970's and you will like this movie if you are high. Well most of the country was not stoned in the 70's. If the inept writers were stoned it must have been on drowsy sinus medicine. There were 4 other people in the theater besides myself when I saw this movie. Of course word did not get out yet about how bad the movie was.
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1/10
well Ron Silver had to start somewhere I guess
movieman_kev9 June 2005
In the future of 1985, a governmental committee headed by Howard Hesseman, is holding hearings on TV's first uncensored network. They sample it's programming, that play as a series of skits. I can name the good 'skit' movies on one hand, not using my thumb. "Amazon Women on the Moon", "Kentucky Fried Movie", "The Meaning of Life", and "Mr. Mike's Mondo Video". Notice how I didn't mention "Tunnel Vision"? The reason for that is that this 'movie' is death in cinematic form. None of the skits are even remotely funny, or even the least bit clever. It takes some sort of great ineptitude on the film makers' part to not even get one laugh out of me.

My Grade: F

Eye Candy: Dody Dorn goes full frontal
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10/10
Cool TV!
lee_eisenberg28 June 2006
Having starred in the zany "Groove Tube", Chevy Chase then had a brief appearance in the wacky "Tunnel Vision", about a Senate subcommittee investigating Tunnel Vision, the first free network, in 1985. The channel features various loony shows and commercials, the sort of things that "UHF" later portrayed. Part spoof of '70s TV, part prediction of what the '80s would be, the movie's a hoot. Probably the funniest scene is Henry Kissinger (not the real one, obviously) getting interviewed on a kids' show where the puppet has a comment about Nixon. Along with Chevy Chase, also starring are John Candy, Al Franken, Tom Davis, Betty Thomas, Jane Curtin and Laraine Newman.

So, in conclusion, the best movies ever made about TV are: "The Groove Tube", "Tunnel Vision", "The Kentucky Fried Movie" and "UHF".
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5/10
Disappointing comedy of historic value
dzy88p24 October 2002
I really wanted to like this movie. With a cast like this, I expected better. Chevy Chase, Laraine Newman, John Candy, Joe Flaherty, Howard Hesseman and more. The reason I picked it up was because Ernie Anderson plays Quant O'Neil, Tunnel Vision anchorman. He only appears a few times but he narrates throughout the movie.

This movie suffers due to bad writing. I can't imagine that I would've thought this movie was funny even back in 1976 and stoned. I think I chuckled once, not sure when. It's really only worth watching to see these folks in their youth, before they became big and famous.
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2/10
Change the channel
Tito-831 October 1998
If you're a fan of rampant racism, tired jokes that were never funny, and general all-out tastelessness, then perhaps you should give this film a look. Otherwise, avoid this film at all costs. It's truly amazing that people like Chevy Chase and Betty Thomas managed to have successful careers when you consider that there was a time when they decided that roles in "Tunnelvision" would be intelligent career choices. Blecch.
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6/10
SNL Skits
rkb10010014 November 2013
Warning: Spoilers
This movie is essentially a bunch of Saturday Night Live type skits that were contemporary with the show at that time. It looks like someone said "Hey lets make a movie out of a bunch of Saturday Night Live skits!!!" The story-line "glue" is a futuristic congressional hearing on a new network called "Tunnel-vision". The skits are presented as some kind of evidence for the hearing, fired off one after the other. Moments of stereo-typical old fuddie-duddie outrage is interspersed. For a nostalgia trip it's OK but gets tedious as the jokes are dated. It was fun seeing some of the old TV stars but I'd give it a C- grade for my personal preferences.
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2/10
TELEVISION OF THE FUTURE?
michaelluvsgina5 May 2001
Back in the 70's, when I had first seen this, I was in high school. It was cool then. Now as an adult I look back at it and I say to myself..yeah right. What was so funny? It has it's moments but they are few and far between. It is so dated that the jokes no longer stand up. Show this to a younger crowd and they will be totally lost. If you like this type of humor you may want to stick with Kentucky Fried Movie or Amazon Women From The Moon. Tunnel Vision as well as Groove tube are too dated for today's viewing.
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