Sunday, August 10, 2014

Movie Review: "Caddyshack" (1980)

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Director: Harold Ramis
Year: 1986
Rating: R
Running Time: 1 hour, 38 minutes

Caddyshack shows the daily happenings of the members and employees of Bushwood Country Club. The primary focus is on a caddy named Danny Noonan (Michael O'Keefe), who is saving up for college, and when he discovers the caddy scholarship has become available again, it means kissing up to the very unpleasant club chairman Judge Elihu Smails (Ted Night). Meanwhile, a rowdy, obnoxious new club guest, a wealthy developer named Al Czervik (Rodney Dangerfield), has drawn the ire of Judge Smails, making him even more irritable than usual. On top of all this, a gopher is laying waste to the golf course, and the slightly strange assistant grounds keeper Carl Spackler (Bill Murray) has been tasked with eliminating it.

This movie is one of Harold Ramis' best, in our opinion. It has many well-known scenes with some legendary comedians in iconic roles. Bill Murray's portrayal of Carl is outrageously hilarious and it is so memorable that it's even parodied and quoted to this day. Rodney Dangerfield shakes up an otherwise stuffy joint with his brash and in-your-face humor, but does go a little over the top on occasion. Chevy Chase delivers some of his famous subtle, low-key yet sarcastic retorts in probably his best role outside the "Vacation" series. It sort of delightful to watch these comics not just in their prime, but in roles that are still funny to this day. So much of the humor that is put out today just isn't funny, so it would have been interesting to see the reception of this film in 1980 when it was released. Beyond these three major comedians, there is a ton of humor throughout this movie, even though some of the jokes deal with some pretty nasty issues. Even Ted Night gives some of the best laughs in the film through his anger and hatred of Czervik.

All in all, this movie almost manages to make golfing look interesting and fun. Some might call this film overrated, but not us. Some films come and go, but this one has managed to stand the test of time through 34 years. We are huge fans of it, even if it has its moments of riotous, absurd comedy interlaced with cheap slapstick and poorly yet cheesily animated gophers.

My Rating: 8.5/10
BigJ's Rating: 8.5/10
IMDB's Rating: 7.4/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 76%
Do we recommend this movie: Yes!
One year ago, we were watching: "Dead Man Down"

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