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Mr. Mike's Mondo Video

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Product Details

  • Actors: Michael O'Donoghue, Dan Aykroyd, Carrie Fisher, Bill Murray
  • Directors: Michael O'Donoghue
  • Format: Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Shout! Factory
  • DVD Release Date: January 13, 2009
  • Run Time: 70 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Shipping: Currently, item can be shipped only within the U.S. and to APO/FPO addresses. For APO/FPO shipments, please check with the manufacturer regarding warranty and support issues.
  • ASIN: B001EYGOE2
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #301,524 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Mr. Mike's Mondo Video" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Product Description

From the twisted genius behind Saturday Night Live s early years, Mr. Mike s Mondo Video is the wildly demented comedy from the mind of National Lampoons and Saturday Night Lives notoriously funny writer/performer Michael O Donoghue. And like most of O Donoghue s humor, it was years ahead of its time. Originally conceived in 1979 as a television special slotted for one of Saturday Night Lives hiatuses, with much of the Saturday Night Live cast on board, it was summarily rejected by NBC as too outrageous for broadcast. Unseen for years, it is finally available on dvd. Features members of the classic Saturday Night Live cast: Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray, Gilda Radner, Jane Curtin and Laraine Newman. Also stars Michael O Donoghue, Carrie Fisher, Teri Garr, Margot Kidder, Edie Baskin, Judith Belushi-Pisano, Mitch Glazer, Joan Hackett, Deborah Harry, Julius La Rosa, Wendie Malick, Klaus Nomi, Paul Shaffer and Sid Vicious.

Bonus Features:

* Bill Murray s eulogy for Michael O Donoghue (delivered on Saturday Night Live the week he died, in 1994)

* Mr. Mike s Least-Loved Bedtime Tales (from season 2 of Saturday Night Live)

The Enchanted Thermos

The Little Train That Died

Willy the Worm

* Commentary from co-writer Mitch Glazer


The original Saturday Night Live crew were known as the "Not Ready for Prime Time Players," but when it came to Mr. Mike’s Mondo Video, they weren’t ready for television at all. "Mr. Mike" is Michael O'Donoghue, SNL’s original head writer, and his twisted sensibility concocted this item, which features cast members Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray, Gilda Radner, Laraine Newman, and Jane Curtin (along with the likes of Carrie Fisher, Margot Kidder, and Debbie Harry) and was intended for NBC; when the network balked at airing it, it was released theatrically. NBC’s objections are understandable--some of this stuff is pretty raunchy--but if you like your humor "vile, degrading, and repulsive," as O’Donoghue proudly describes it, you’ve come to the right place. Produced in 1979, the rag-tag 70-minute collection was apparently intended as a spoof of Mondo Cane, the 1962 Italian "shockumentary" depicting various depraved and bizarre acts, and while it isn’t consistently hilarious, to say the least, Mondo Video has something to offend pretty much everyone. It’s hard to imagine the folks at PETA, for example, being too happy about the "Cat Swimming School" segment, which consists of nothing more than terrified kitties being thrown into a pool; nor will a scene at a hoity-toity French restaurant in which the supercilious waiter offers some dumb Americans "donkey pie or brandied kittens" for dessert (apparently O’Donoghue had it in for felines). Sure, much of it is not only sophomoric and tasteless but also rather amateurish, coming off like outtakes from America’s Funniest Home Videos. But isn’t that the point? Bonus features include a couple of "Mr. Mike’s Least-Loved Bedtime Tales" from SNL, as well as Murray’s eulogy for O’Donoghue following the writer-producer’s death in 1994. --Sam Graham

Customer Reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By John Ferrer on November 27, 2008
Format: DVD
Just to counteract the first customer review, let me say that I found a beat-up VHS copy of this a few years ago and became totally obsessed with it. It's wonderfully bizarre and dark, closer in spirit to the National Lampoon Radio Hour than the tame-by-comparison SNL. It's downright amazing that Shout! Factory is rescuing this from obscurity, and it will be a fantastic discovery for fans of Mike O'Donoghue and the other early SNL'ers, most of whom make brief appearances.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Blackie - Knower of... well... All on January 14, 2009
Format: DVD
I saw Mondo Video 4 times during the week it ran theatrically, because I KNEW it would never be seen again. I wanted to burn it into my brain. Happily, I was wrong. One brave TV station in Pittsburgh actually ran it ONCE and I taped it. Now, SHOUT! has somehow seen fit to preserve it (or most of it) for posterity. Geez! Paul Anka is such a loser to deny permission to let them include Sid Vicious singing "MY WAY". Anyway....

Definitely not for everyone, Mondo Video is for the adventurous who love dark, dark humor and appreciate the celebration of hype - as this is what O'Donoghue is doing here. He endlessly promises the shocking, the perverted, the astounding...and just like the "Mondo" movies he's parodying, he doesn't deliver on the hype. But it's a VERY funny trip.

Much funnier than any of the alleged 'counter-culture' comics around today.

Very twisted. Very funny. A must-have. If you have the cajones for it.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Paul L. Sungenis on February 4, 2009
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
"Mondo Video" was conceived as a summer replacement series for "Saturday Night Live," produced by Lorne Michaels and written and hosted by SNL and "National Lampoon" veteran Michael "Mr. Mike" O'Donoghue. A pilot was shot and rejected by NBC as being too disturbing even for late night. Michaels and O'Donoghue took the pilot to Showtime who showed it...once, then canceled any plans to pursue the series. The show had a very low-key history after that. Showtime showed it again years later just to reassert rights to it. It had a limited VHS release that was marred by Paul Anka (but more on that later), and had a couple of 35mm prints thrown for the festival circuit.

My mother managed to tape the original showing back in 1979, and it's been one of my greatest guilty pleasures. Now, to celebrate its 30th anniversary, it's finally been released on DVD, and to some degree I wish it hadn't been.

The loss of Sid Vicious' performance of "My Way" is understandable, as Paul Anka had blocked its being included in the VHS release, and it looks like they didn't even attempt to try to get the rights this time around as they just reused the scroll from the VHS version, to the point of referring to "this videotape." The loss of one of my favorite segments was a letdown, even if an understandable one.

However, the real problem with this release is the nearly 25 minutes of previously unused material has been restored to the show with the DVD release. With few exceptions (such as a bizarre little piece called "Pat Nixon And The Mondo Video Dancers") the restored material is terrible. Like Saturday Night Live then (and now), the original NBC pilot of "Mondo Video" suffered from the need to fill 90 minutes of material when the writers only had about 45 good minutes.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mark Schildberg on February 11, 2009
Format: DVD
You're either going to love this video or hate it. I fall into the love-it camp because the perverse and dark nature of its humor is entirely in keeping with the decadent style of one of my favorite artists, the great Michael O'Donoghue, brilliant National Lampoon editor and writer for Saturday Night Live. Mr. Mike's world view is on ample display for 70 minutes here, and it isn't pretty. It's twisted, cynical, and frequently marries the heroic to the mundane. If that's not a style of humor you enjoy, you will find this show off-putting and it will probably test your patience. If you believe the human race's worst instincts are fair game for satire, you will revel in how hilariously foolish we can be. Consider yourself warned.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Zaar on March 6, 2009
Format: DVD
I agree with Mr. Schildberg. This is a love-or-leave-it type of offering. I give major kudos to "Mr. Mike's Mondo Video" for cluing me into Klaus Nomi: The 'dream sequence' which features him performing the aria from 'Samson and Delilah'. Overall, it's really cool slices of twisted stuff/humor. Not for everybody.
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