7.7/10
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8 user 7 critic

Mr. Warmth: The Don Rickles Project (2007)

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This terrific feature film comedy reveals the background of one of the legends of comedy, Don Rickles. Hailed by some of today's biggest comedians as one of the classics, who they aspire to... See full summary »

Director:

John Landis
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Won 2 Primetime Emmys. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Harry Dean Stanton ... Himself / Private Willard
John Landis ... Himself / Sister Rosa Stigmata
Don Rickles ... Himself / Crapgame / Petty Officer Ruby / Crane / Nellie / Anne Bancroft / Big Drop / Mr. Potato Head - (voice)
Clint Eastwood ... Himself / Private Kelly / Harry Callahan
Robert De Niro ... Himself
Richard Lewis ... Himself
Victor Figueredo Victor Figueredo ... Himself
Conrad Hermogenes Conrad Hermogenes ... Himself
Paul Shefrin Paul Shefrin ... Himself
Heidi Akawa Heidi Akawa ... Herself
Peggy March Peggy March ... Herself
Joe Mele Joe Mele ... Himself
Chris Rock ... Himself
Tom McDermott Tom McDermott ... Guitar
Jack Cenna Jack Cenna ... Percussion
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Storyline

This terrific feature film comedy reveals the background of one of the legends of comedy, Don Rickles. Hailed by some of today's biggest comedians as one of the classics, who they aspire to emulate in their own comedy. Comedians reveal their unique stories, and tell how chance meetings and personal connections propelled them to the heights of comedy. Written by Jwelch5742

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

No one is safe from the most dangerous man in America See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 December 2007 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Don Rickles Documentary See more »

Filming Locations:

British Columbia, Canada See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$500,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color | Black and White (archive footage)

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

While Bobby Slayton lists the many shows Rickles appeared on in the 1960's, he names Bewitched. Rickles never appeared on the show. See more »

Quotes

Steve Lawrence: Black people can do black jokes, Jew do Jew jokes, Italians do Italian jokes, etc, etc. He does em all and gets away with it because he's hysterical.
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Connections

References Mister Roberts (1955) See more »

Soundtracks

Old Blue
Performed by Harry Dean Stanton
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User Reviews

 
It is truly an honor to be insulted by Don Rickles
17 April 2009 | by leisermitchellsSee all my reviews

Don Rickles, for 55 years, has found ways to turn even the most awful and bigoted subject into hilarity. Revered by comics of the younger generation, Rickles has managed to somehow stay the biggest secret in the comic business (at least for those of us under the age of 40!). There are comics by the dozens who imitate Rickles' style, from the yelling and personal attacks to his "disdain for sensitivity." He will make fun of your ethnicity, your weight, your hair, your clothes, your money, your wife...it will be incredibly offensive, and it will be hilarious. To say I was thrilled to discover that Mr. Warmth was being made is an enormous understatement.

Mr. Warmth: the Don Rickles Project, is a story about a man who has become famous by insulting those around him, which, as comedian after comedian mentions in the film, is perhaps the hardest thing to do. His genius lies in the availability of material; every night, his audience changes, and so every night, so does the act. Don Rickles is an insult-improv- comedian. It is simply marvelous to watch.

John Landis does not attempt to stuff Rickles' humor down our throats. It is bad enough that I spent the last two paragraphs telling you how funny this man is; the film would be pointless without some tape to augment the tale. From a Las Vegas appearance in 2006 (at the age of 80) Rickles begins his show by going out into the audience and picking out some favorites.

"Christ look at the front row, I'm working a state home for Christ-sake! Go home and die!" "Who let the Chinaman in here? 40 million Jews, I got a chink sitting in the goddamn front!" "Are you a queer?" "Chinese? Philippino? Japanese! 3 years in the jungle looking for your father!"

Out of context, the man sounds like a bigoted ass. Yet people laugh. Why? Why do they laugh? Why has this man been so successful for so long? This question, more than anything else, seems to be the point of Mr. Warmth.

While it seems improper for me to answer this myself (the documentary does such a superb job of it), I did find several flaws in its creation. Mr. Warmth, for all of the sparkle of its main character, got far too sidetracked in certain spots, and relied far too heavily on the interviews of other comedians. 5-6 minutes without Don threw me off track, and while the information was interesting, it was not quite relevant. Furthermore, I honestly wished John Landis could've found someone, a celebrity, who found Rickles' humor to be insulting and racist (Pat Boone, if he were still alive). It would've provided some much needed contrast to a documentary that comes off as one sided. These are the only flaws preventing me from giving this film a 10.

I would highly recommend Mr. Warmth, whether or not you are already a fan of Don Rickles. In a world full of PC comics whose idea of being "racy" is to use the f-word, Rickles is the only man carrying on the legacy of Lenny Bruce, George Carlin and Redd Foxx. He knows know boundaries, and his lack of respect for our stuck-up attitudes makes us laugh every time. May you live forever Don, because there will be no one like you again.


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