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Film Analysis

In: Film and Music

Submitted By aymee4182
Words 1912
Pages 8
Aymee Gonzalez
Professor Susan Malmo
23 July 2016
Major Filmmaker and Major Works: Name of Filmmaker and Works
Mel Brooks
Biographical Information
Brooks was born Melvin James Kaminsky on June 28, 1926, in Brooklyn, New York. His father's family were Jews from Danzig, Germany (present-day Gdańsk, Poland); his mother's family were Jews from Kyiv, in the Pale of Settlement of the Russian Empire (present-day Ukraine). He had three older brothers: Irving, Lenny, and Bernie. Brooks' father died of kidney disease at 34 when Brooks was two years old.He has said of his father's death, "there's an outrage there. I may be angry at God, or at the world, for that. And I'm sure a lot of my comedy is based on anger and hostility. Growing up in Williamsburg, I learned to clothe it in comedy to spare myself problems—like a punch in the face." In middle age, Brooks became one of the most successful film directors of the 1970s, Brooks started working in various Borscht Belt resorts and nightclubs in the Catskill Mountains as a drummer and pianist. Around this time, he changed his professional name to "Mel Brooks" (from his mother's maiden name Brookman) after being confused with the Borscht Belt trumpet player Max Kaminsky. After a regular comic at one of the nightclubs was too sick to perform one night, Brooks started working as a stand-up comic, telling jokes and doing movie-star impressions. He also began acting in summer stock in Red Bank, New Jersey, and did some radio work. He eventually worked his way up to the comically aggressive job of Tummler (master entertainer) at Grossinger's, one of the Borscht Belt's most famous resorts. Brooks found more rewarding work behind the scenes, becoming a comedy writer for television. In 1949 his friend Sid Caesar hired Brooks to write jokes for the NBC series . Influences
One of Mel Brooks connections that influenced his work is Buster Keaton. Buster Keaton holds a special place in Brooks' heart. Brooks was introduced to Buster's work as a youngster growing up in Brooklyn. Thanks to silent movie houses on Coney Island, Brooks made a discovery that would stay with him for the rest of his life. In an interview Mel brooks recalls , "We'd go there, and we'd get a frankfurter, a root beer and a boiled-to-death ear of corn at Feldman's, which was before Nathan's Famous Hot Dogs. In the back, they had a silent movie theater. Thanks to silent movie houses on Coney Island, Brooks made a discovery that that would stay with him for the rest of his life. He recalls, "We'd go there, and we'd get a frankfurter, a root beer and a boiled-to-death ear of corn at Feldman's, which was before Nathan's Famous Hot Dogs." In the back, they had a silent movie theater. The screen was just a white sheet, they had this flickering machine, that was the first time I saw this angel with a white face and these beautiful eyes. I knew this was something special. It was the first time I saw (Keaton). He wore a flat pancake of a hat, and I just couldn't believe the man's grace". What Mel Brooks is Most Known for
He is known as a creator of broad film farces and comic parodies. He became well known as part of the comedy duo with Carl Reiner in the comedy skit, The 2000 Year Old Man. He also created, with Buck Henry, the hit television comedy series, Get Smart, which ran from 1965 to 1970.He became well known as part of the comedy duo with Carl Reiner in the comedy skit, The 2000 Year Old Man. He also created, with Buck Henry, the hit television comedy series, Get Smart, which ran from 1965 to 1970. In middle age, Brooks became one of the most successful film directors of the 1970s. His best-known films include The Producers, The Twelve Chairs, Blazing Saddles, Young Frankenstein, Silent Movie, High Anxiety, History of the World, Part I,Spaceballs and Robin Hood: Men in Tights. A musical adaptation of his first film, The Producers, ran on Broadway from 2001 to 2007. In addition to appearing onscreen in his own projects, Brooks started his own production company, Brooksfilms, with the desire to push forth more serious fare. Brooksfilms has produced movies like The Elephant Man (1980), To Be or Not to Be (1983)—in which Brooks and his wife, actress Anne Bancroft, co-starred—and The Fly (1986). How Highly is Mel Brooks Regarded
Mel Brooks is often regarded as one of Hollywood's funniest men. Chicago critics Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert have called him one of the most successful comedy directors in the world today. Thanks to such highly successful films as The Producers, Blazing Saddles, and Young Frankenstein. Which ranked in the top 20 list in the American Film Institute's list of the top 100 comedy films of the past 100 years (1900-2000). In 2001, he won an Emmy, a Grammy and an Oscar. Mel Brooks joined a small list of EGOT winners with his Tony award for The Producers. Also He received a Kennedy Center Honor in 2009, the 41st AFI Life Achievement Award in June 2013, and a British Film Institute Fellowship in March 2015. Important Films
"The Producers"- is a 1968 American satirical comedy film written and directed by Mel Brooks. The film tells the story of a theatrical producer and an accountant who want to produce a sure-fire Broadway flop. The Producers was the first film directed by Brooks. He won an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. In addition, Zero Mostel was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy, and Brooks was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Screenplay. Decades later, the film was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry and placed 11th on the AFI's 100 Years...100 Laughs list. It was later remade successfully by Brooks as an acclaimed Broadway stage musical, which itself was adapted as a film. In 1996, the film was deemed "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" by the United States Library of Congress and selected for preservation in the National Film Registry. "Blazing Saddles"- s a 1974 satirical Western comedy film directed by Mel Brooks. Brooks appears in two supporting roles, Governor William J. Le Petomane and a Yiddish-speaking Indian chief. The film satirizes the racism obscured by myth-making Hollywood accounts of the American West, with the hero being ablack sheriff in an all-white town. The film is full of deliberate anachronisms, from the Count Basie Orchestra playing "April in Paris" in the Wild West, to Slim Pickens referring to the Wide World of Sports, to the German army of World War II. The movie was nominated for three Academy Awards, and is ranked No. 6 on the American Film Institute's 100 Years...100 Laughs list. The film received three academy award nominations in 1974 for best film editing, best music, and original song. "Young Frankenstein"- is a 1974 American horror comedy film directed by Mel Brooks. The film is an affectionate parody of the classic horror film genre. To help evoke the atmosphere of the earlier films, Brooks shot the picture entirely in black-and-white, a rarity in the 1970s, and employed 1930s-style opening credits and scene transitions such as iris outs, wipes, and fades to black.A critical favorite and box office smash, Young Frankenstein ranks No. 28 on Total Film magazine's readers' "List of the 50 Greatest Comedy Films of All Time", No. 56 on Bravo TV's list of the "100 Funniest Movies", and No. 13 on the American Film Institute's list of the 100 funniest American movies. In 2003, it was deemed "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" by the United States National Film Preservation Board, and selected for preservation in theLibrary of Congress National Film Registry. On its 40th anniversary, Brooks considered it by far his finest film as writer-producer "Silent Movie"- is a 1976 American satirical comedy film co-written, directed by, and starring Mel Brooks. While indeed silent (except for one word, music and numerous sound effects), the film is a parody of the silent filmgenre, particularly the slapstick comedies of Charlie Chaplin, Mack Sennett, and Buster Keaton. He considered the film equal in comedic ability to Blazing Saddles, superior to Young Frankenstein, and inferior to The Producers . Among the film's most famous gags is the fact that the oIt earned North American rentals of $21,240,000.[7] At the 34th Golden Globe Awards, the film received nominations for Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy,Best Motion Picture Actor - Musical or Comedy for Mel Brooks, only audible word in the movie is spoken by Marcel Marceau, a noted mime. "High Anxiety"- is a 1977 comedy film produced and directed by Mel Brooks, who also plays the lead.This is Brooks' first film as a producer and first speaking lead role. The film is a parody of suspense films, most obviously the films directed by Alfred Hitchcock: Spellbound, Vertigo andThe Birds. The movie was dedicated to Hitchcock, who worked with Brooks on the screenplay. At the 35th Golden Globe Awards, the film received nominations for Best Motion Picture - Musical/Comedy and Best Motion Picture Actor - Musical/Comedy for Mel Brooks. "History of the World"- is a 1981 American comedy anthology film written, produced, and directed by Mel Brooks. Brooks also stars in the film, playing five roles: Moses, Comicus the stand-up philosopher, Tomás de Torquemada,King Louis XVI, and Jacques, le garçon de pisse. The film is a parody of the historical spectacular film genre anthology, including the sword and sandal epic and theperiod costume drama subgenres. The four main segments consist of stories set during the Stone Age, the Roman Empire, the Spanish Inquisition, and the French Revolution. History of the World, Part I was a box office success, taking in $31,672,907 domestically from an $11 million budget. Analysis
Mel Brooks is the master of parodies. He built a career pioneering, popularizing, and perfecting two forms of comedy—lowbrow vulgarity and genre parodies—that have since taken up residence at the bottom of the esteem barrel. Brooks loved old showbiz conventions and formats, celebrating them as much as he teased them. Nearly every one of his films stops for a musical number, even if he has to crash through the fourth wall to get there. Brooks shows real discipline and restraint in his take on the classic horror tale, opting to build atmosphere and establish themes instead of going for easy laughs. He aped black-and-white style of classic monster movies so well that Young Frankenstein is practically indistinguishable from them. Not many broad comedies can boast this level of visual elegance.Mel Brooks has had an impact on film even away from the director’s chair. Brooks is responsible for launching and boosting the careers of many comedians. It was he who gave Dave Chappelle his first credited role.

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