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CompleteMartialArts.com - A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum
List Price: $14.98
Our Price: $9.99
Your Save: $ 4.99 ( 33% )
Availability: Usually ships in 24 hours
Manufacturer: MGM (Video & DVD)
Starring: Zero Mostel, Phil Silvers, Buster Keaton, Michael Crawford, Jack Gilford
Directed By: Richard Lester
Average Customer Rating: Average rating of 4.0/5Average rating of 4.0/5Average rating of 4.0/5Average rating of 4.0/5Average rating of 4.0/5

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Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Audience Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Binding: DVD
EAN: 9780792844815
Format: Closed-captioned
ISBN: 0792844815
Label: MGM (Video & DVD)
Manufacturer: MGM (Video & DVD)
Number Of Items: 1
Picture Format: Letterbox
Publisher: MGM (Video & DVD)
Region Code: 1
Release Date: 2000-04-18
Running Time: 99
Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
Theatrical Release Date: 1966-10-16

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Editorial Reviews:

Something appealing. Something appalling. Something for everyone a comedy tonight! "One ofthe hottest burlesque shows that ever hit Broadway" (Time) comes to the screen showcasing the enormous talents of Tony AwardÂ(r) winner Zero Mostel, Phil Silvers, Jack Gilford (Cocoon), Buster Keaton and Michael Crawford (Broadway's "The Phantom of the Opera"). Featuring keenly clever tunes like "Comedy Tonight" and "Lovely," this wild Stephen Sondheim musical about a raucous gaggle of ancient Romans is a "flip, glib and sophisticated, yet rump-slapping bawdy and fast-paced look at the seamy underside of classical Rome through hipster's shades" (Variety).When a wily, witty, lying, lazy, cheating slave discovers that his master's son is in love with thegirl next doora virgin courtesanhe promises to help win her heart in exchange for his freedom. But the road to romance is blocked with stunning surprises, cunning disguisesand the wildest chariot race ever!


Spotlight customer reviews:

Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: Richard Lester Classic
Comment: I love Richard Lester's style of direction( Hard Day's Night, The Ritz, Three Muskateer's etc). Zero Mostel in a role that rivals his performance in the Producer's will have you rolling on the floor. Phil Silvers is at his best as a wheeler dealer. The Roman Empire lasted in spite of the shenanigans here. A story of mixed up love and misdirection. Will they pull it off or will they fall to the conquerer who raped Thrace thrice? Anyway it's a very funny movie at a greta price.

Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: a classic stage play
Comment: This is a fun adaptation of a great stage play. While I think that "A Funny Thing..." is better on the stage, still this DVD will bring much enjoyment.

Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: Non-stop Laughs, Sight Gags, Slapstick and just plain fun!
Comment: A funny thing happened on the way to my cable "on demand" service. I saw this title in the listings, but for some reason kept skipping over it. I had heard of the Broadway version, and generally am disappointed in movie remakes of stage musicals. Then I thought of the fantastic few movie musicals I loved and found better than the stage versions: "Cabaret", "Evita", the amazing "Chicago", "The Phantom of the Opera" (yes, I loved it as much as the Broadway version) and "Sweeney Todd". Historically, 75% of musical plays do not make the same "intimate" connection on the big screen. Regarding "Forum", I was hooked during the opening titles, with Zero Mostel singing "Comedy Tonight" as all kinds of hilarious mayhem is taking place, letting us know this is NOT going to be a Shakesperean experience. Who knew Michael Crawford (22 years before "Phantom") was such an expert comic, and was not above taking a few tumbles and playing such a dim-witted yet entirely loveable Hero to Zero Mostel's Pseudolus, a sly, fast talking slave? This is a movie you must see again and again, because there is so much going on, and it's just impossible to give it a fair review the first time around. Once you get the crazy plot in your head, the real fun begins when you don't have to concentrate on the story, and the action gets funnier and funnier though you know exactly what's going to happen...and then you see a flash of slapstick you missed before. There's a lot of almost inaudible little "wise cracks" that evade us, perhaps several times, and then...zing!...you hear them while still trying to keep track of the circus-like shenanigans happening non-stop. One thing I especially liked was the art direction...splashy hot colors, some realistic studio sets, plus a few deliberately not realistic sets (e.g. Hero's bedroom, which is painted in an almost child-like manner, reflecting the naive simplicity of its occupant). I have a hard time wondering why some of the reviewers just don't "get it" and take such an uppity attitude. Come on guys, "Forum" is what it is, and pretends to be nothing else but pure fun! Forget the play; how could a stage in a theater convey one of the weirdest, wackiest moments in which the four main characters are singing and almost "conga-line" dancing high atop a real Roman aquaduct? And mare's sweat for a love potion? And I've just barely touched on the sights and sounds of this crazy "Producers"-like film, where nothing is sacred, rarely makes sense and pours its heart out to do its primary job: entertain, entertain and entertain. No heavey social messages, forget political correctness and check your prior expectations at the door. I have to say that this could have been an abyssmal flop were it not for the genius direction of Richard Lester. Check out his credentials, and that alone may make the skeptics understand what "Forum" is all about. And it's definitely not about logic, sanity or high theatre. It's all about fun! And what's wrong with that?

Customer Rating: Average rating of 2/5Average rating of 2/5Average rating of 2/5Average rating of 2/5Average rating of 2/5
Summary: Not too many things funny happen . . at all
Comment: I must say, I've seen this story played out in the theater twice in my lifetime, thus far. And in both occassions, I loved it! The theater productions offered more in the way of humor, satire and coordinated slap-stick. So it was with some disappointment that I wrote this critique. Where as I knew many of the actors in the movie and have come to enjoy many of there other work, this movie lacked the timing needed to make it work. I'm not sure exactly . . . but it seem watered down. See this in a play/theater form and I'm certain you'll appreciate the story much better. And yet, I'm glad I have this on DVD . . . a collectors gem.

Q!


Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: My Favorite Movie
Comment: I have loved this movie since I saw it as a child. The Comedy, the Singing, Phil Silver's Glasses in Roman times. Zero, Jack, Phil, Buster. Need I say more? And a very young Michael Crawford.

Great comedy. Great Singing. I can watch this over & over.


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