It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World
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MAD WORLD does something right that every other movie of its type gets wrong--it starts a chase plot in reel one, then develops character outward as we go along. It does not spend 45 minutes setting up the story, as similar movies do. In the opening scene, a dying millionaire (Jimmy Durante) tells a group of people in the Southern California desert that a large sum of money is buried "under a big W" in a park south of San Diego. Mickey Rooney and Buddy Hackett are gag writers headed for Las Vegas. Milton Berle is headed for a vacation with wife Dorothy Provine and Ethel Herman as the mother-in-law to beat all mothers-in-law. Sid Caesar and Edie Adams are a dentist and his wife. And Jonathan Winters is driving a van of furniture. Monitoring all of them, as they race after the money, is Spencer Tracy as the coastal city (a compilation of Long Beach and Santa Monica) police captain with a wall map.
So we have a slapstick chase movie to end all slapstick chase movies. (WARNING: PLOT SPOILERS AHEAD!!) Heading a golden age of television cast are Caesar and Adams, who get to fly in a makeshift plane, then get locked in a hardware store basement.Read more ›
I wasn't that impressed the first time I saw this movie. But on repeated viewings with friends, I've come to enjoy it more. The actors are phenomenal and the material has a timelessly funny quality to it. I'm young enough that I don't recognize all the stars, but that doesn't diminish my enjoyment at all.
I was excited when I found out that the movie was coming to DVD, but I've got to say the final product disappointed me. I have only seen the "restored" VHS version that's been out for years. This DVD goes back to the original theatrical release and cuts out some of my favorite scenes. They are included in the deleted scenes section, but it's a very poorly thought out section that makes it hard to find what you want to see. The DVD does include good picture and sound, and I have always enjoyed the documentary included from the videos.
This is a classic movie that everyone should see. However, if you're a fan of the recent videos, be forewarned that this is not the entire movie you are used to seeing. Hopefully, this movie will be reissued on DVD with this footage added back.
With adulthood, and changing tastes, I can see some of the film's flaws...It's too long, Spencer Tracy is obviously in poor health and straining to keep his energy level up, some of the scenes (especially the early ones) lack pacing, and the Cinerama format almost guarantees you'll miss part of the action, even in a wide-screen format.
But the film's sense of joy is undimmed, and the new digitally-remastered edition Amazon.com is offering gives them full attention. Enjoy again Rooney and Hackett's mishandling of an airplane, Jonathan Winter's gas station destruction scene (a classic!), and, of course the bodies-flying finale.
And hang in there...After the film is a 'Making of...' documentary, with FABULOUS ancedotes by the surviving cast members...It alone is worth the cost of the film!
After 36 years, I STILL love this movie!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is the funniest movie of all time. This star studded movie had me laughing from start to finish.Published 1 hour ago by Amazon Customer
the movie never appeared on my TV. How so you complain or get your money back when this happens?Published 1 day ago by Dave Kemp
One of the greatest comedies of all time . I loved the many actors and actress's that appear in this epic. Read morePublished 4 days ago by B Fitzgerald
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|Criterion release of "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World"||
Terrible news. The approximately 2 1/2 hour re-release is a far better version of the film. The full length version is overloaded with dialogue given to the actors just to keep them happy, because they were counting their lines. Criterion has its head up its butt as usual.
Feb 24, 2014 by Carver Green | See all 2 posts
|Who is on lower right of cover?||
Are you talking about the policeman laying on the ground under the car? That is the only character not identified in the legend on the official movie program, and my friend and I have debated who he is supposed to be for several years.
It is most definitely not E.E. Horton. He played Mr.... Read More
Aug 8, 2011 by Ferd Burfle | See all 5 posts
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