Down-on-his-luck theatrical producer Max Bialystock is forced to romance rich old ladies to finance his efforts. When timid accountant Leo Bloom reviews Max’s accounting books, the two hit upon a way to make a fortune by producing a sure-fire flop. The play which is to be their gold mine? “Springtime for Hitler.”
Scott Renshaw <[email protected]>
User Reviews: When you see a movie once and think it’s hilarious, that’s a good sign. When you see a movie about a half-dozen times and think it’s still hilarious, that’s more than a good sign. That means that not only can you put up with seeing it multiple times, but you also find new things that you didn’t see before. Plus, there are some scenes that are too hilarious not to laugh at! The chemistry between stars doesn’t hurt, either. What movie am I talking about? Mel Brooks’ The Producers, his most sustained and inspired piece of lunacy!
Gene Wilder and Zero Mostel have amazing chemistry as meek accountant Leo Bloom and scheming Broadway producer Max Bialystock. Max seduces little old ladies for checks, and when Leo comes into his office one day, he finds that a producer can make more money with a flop instead of a hit. They decide to do his ploy, and create the world’s worst play, Springtime for Hitler (a gay romp with Adolf and Eva), and meet interesting characters, including author Franz Liebkind (Kenneth Mars), director Roger DeBris (Christopher Hewett), and their Hitler, Lorenzo St.DuBois, aka L.S.D. (Dick Shawn).
What makes this comedy such a gem is its mixture of types of comedy. There is slapstick, there’s satire, there’s bad taste, and everything but the kitchen sink! The scenes I have seen so many times, but what makes me love them is how they, mainly Wilder, play their roles. Wilder is somewhat crazy, and relies on his blanket to calm himself down. Not only does he have comic perfection, he’s a darned good actor to boot! Mostel is great as the would-be sleazy loser-producer, with eye movements that put Silent Bob to shame and a great voice.
The songs in it are great, also. Two of them were written by Brooks himself, `Springtime for Hitler’ (with which I have auditioned for a role in a musical with) and `Prisoners of Love’. They’re both very funny (real Brooks-ian) (note to Merriam-Webster: include that word right next to `bling-bling’). It’s not exactly a musical, but The Producers is in a class of its own. Long live The Producers!
My rating: 9/10
Rated PG for bad taste and homosexual themes.