The Mel Brooks Collection (Blazing Saddles / Young Frankenstein / Silent Movie / Robin Hood: Men in Tights / To Be or Not to Be / History of the World, Part 1 / The Twelve Chairs / High Anxiety)
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
The earliest film, The Twelve Chairs (1970), is the least known, but is one of the funniest, helped greatly by a good story (adapted from a 1920s Russian tale) and the casting of Ron Moody and Frank Langella as treasure hunters. Young Frankenstein and Blazing Saddles followed in 1974. The former, a spoof of horror films, is easily one of the top two or three funniest movies of all time, and the latter is justly famous for its often-tasteless send-up of Western cliches. Silent Movie (1976) is just what the title describes, with its only word of dialogue spoken from the least-likely source, and High Anxiety (1977) pays tribute to the work of Alfred Hitchcock. History of the World, Part 1 (1981) mocks historical events and epics, and To Be or Not to Be (1983) is a remake of Ernst Lubitsch's 1942 classic of the same name (it's also the only film in the set for which Brooks didn't receive writing and directing credit). By this time, Brooks was more actively taking the leading roles himself (rather than the bit parts), and unfortunately relying less on his topnotch ensemble of recurring players, which included Gene Wilder, Madeline Kahn, Cloris Leachman, Harvey Korman, and Dom DeLuise. But he does use a new ensemble (including Cary Elwes and, in his film debut, Dave Chappelle), for Robin Hood: Men in Tights (1993), the feature-length spin on the same hero Brooks had spoofed in his short-lived 1975 television series When Things Were Rotten.
Bonus features are minor. In addition to an HBO featurette on Men in Tights, there's a featurette and interviews on To Be or Not to Be and all the features (Brooks commentary, deleted scenes, interviews, etc.) that were on the original release of Young Frankenstein. Note that while rights issues kept The Producers, Spaceballs, and other films out of this set, 20th Century Fox was able to use Warner Bros.' Blazing Saddles. The features on that disc, however, are the ones that were on the 1997 DVD release, not the 2004 anniversary reissue. Regardless, the set's price for this many films is low, and because it has so many films new to DVD, Brooks fans will want to pick this up faster than they can say... "Frau Blücher!" --David Horiuchi
Top Customer Reviews
Fans of Brooks will be buying this for the previously unreleased films "Silent Movie", "Robin Hood:Men in Tights", "To Be or Not to Be" (which Brooks didn't direct but stars in) and "High Anxiety". All these films look pretty good here (although "The Twelve Chairs" is probably going to be of the least interest to fans that grew up on Brooks other classic films). "Robin Hood" comes with an featurette produced for HBO on the film. Most of the others come only with theatrical trailer(s). "To Be or Not To Be" comes with a short featurette and some profiles of Brooks, the late Anne Bancroft and Charles Durning. Clearly they weren't produced for the DVD but must be some sort of promotional bits for another format (you're guess is as good as mine)possibly for an Electtronic Press Book.
If you have problems with any of the discs you can contact Fox at their customer service phone number 1-888-223-2FOX.
If you compare the rest of the films to the original full frame laserdiscs you will see that FOX just masked off the top & bottom of the picture to make the films look widescreen. They should have been presented in full frame to give us the complete picture, some signs & faces get cut off.
So now I have to keep my 1987 laserdiscs, even though these new transfers look sharper.
The missing films not in this box set are not owned by 20th Century Fox. We are lucky they made a special arrangement with Warner Brothers to include Blazing Saddles (although it is the old master) in this set.
"The Producers" , "Space Balls" and "Life Stinks" are owned by MGM.
"Dracula Dead and Loving it" is distributed by Warner Brothers & owned by Castlerock.
Here are my given thoughts of the eight movies presented in this set:
Blazing Saddles-10/10 One of my all-time favorite comedies, this one literally pokes fun at all the early Western movies we've seen. A recently hired black sheriff tries to protect the peaceful town of Rock Ridge from certain troubles, most of which come from Attorney General Hedy Lamarr ("That's Hedley!") trying to destroy the town and build a railroad across the area.
High Anxiety-9/10 A hilarious sendup to the Hitchcock stories, this one shows Dr. Richard A. Thorndyke, a psychiatrist with an huge fear of heights, become head of a pyschiatric institute, and realizes that he's dealing with a much bigger fear than his own.
History of the World, Part I-8/10 Hilarious. This one is a ragbag of sketches, showing the timeline from the evolution of men to the Roman Era, to Spanish Catholic conversion to the French Revolution, all shown Brooks style. The Spanish Inquisition song, is a real hoot.
Robin Hood: Men In Tights-7/10 Not Brooks's best, but still quite enjoyable. It's basically a parody on Robin Hood, which its jokes hit more than miss.
Silent Movie-8/10 First time I've seen it, and I like it. The title here explains it all: A silent movie about a crew of moviemakers making a silent movie for the Big Studios before the company Engulf and Devour takes over the studio. A simple plot, but still lots of fun.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Some of the funniest movies ever made, all in one collection! Brilliant!Published 1 month ago by Reverend Micheal L. Edwards
I give this Mel Brooks Collection 4 stars because I think he is very funny, but can be a little too stupidPublished 1 month ago by dmcp
Great set! Extremely happy with this set. I now own eveything Mel Brooks has ever directed. as everyone knows Mel Brooks directed 12 movies. Read morePublished 2 months ago by clark
Set up an Amazon Giveaway
What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?
Look for Similar Items by Category
- Movies & TV > Boxed Sets > Comedy
- Movies & TV > Boxed Sets > Westerns
- Movies & TV > Genre for Featured Categories > Action & Adventure
- Movies & TV > Genre for Featured Categories > Comedy
- Movies & TV > Genre for Featured Categories > Musicals
- Movies & TV > Genre for Featured Categories > Romance
- Movies & TV > Genre for Featured Categories > Westerns
- Movies & TV > Movies
- Movies & TV > Musicals & Performing Arts > Musicals
- Movies & TV > Studio Specials > 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment > All Fox Titles
- Movies & TV > Studio Specials > 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment > Comedy
- Movies & TV > Studio Specials > 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment > Musicals > General
- Movies & TV > Studio Specials > 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment > Westerns