Silent Movie  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Silent Movie is a 1976 comedy film directed by and starring Mel Brooks. The ensemble cast includes Dom DeLuise, Marty Feldman, Bernadette Peters, Sid Caesar, Anne Bancroft, Henny Youngman, Liza Minnelli, Burt Reynolds, James Caan, and Paul Newman.

As its title suggests, the film is a parody of the silent film genre, particularly the slapstick comedies of Hal Roach, Mack Sennett and Buster Keaton. Among the film's many jokes is the fact that the only audible line in the movie is spoken by Marcel Marceau, the famous mime. Sound is also used for a scene that shows New York City and the score begins to play "San Francisco", only to have it come to a sudden stop as if the orchestra realizes they are playing the wrong music. They then go into "I'll Take Manhattan" instead.

A play on the 1970s trend of large corporations buying up smaller companies is parodied in this film by the attempt of the Engulf and Devour Corporation to take control of a studio (a thinly veiled reference to Gulf+Western's takeover of Paramount Pictures).


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