Tuesday, March 5, 2019

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1966)

Director: Richard Lester

Writers: Melvin Frank, Michael Pertwee, Burt Shevelove, Larry Gelbart, Titus Maccius Plautus

Composer: Stephen Sondheim, Ken Thorne

Starring: Zero Mostel, Phil Silvers, Buster Keaton, Michael Crawford, Jack Gilford, Annette Andre, Michael Hordern, Leon Greene, Roy Kinnear, Alfie Bass, John Bluthal, Pamela Brown, Patricia Jessel, Frank Thornton, Jon Pertwee

More info: IMDb

Tagline: Something for Everyone!

Plot: A wily slave must unite a virgin courtesan and his young smitten master to earn his freedom.

My rating: 7.5/10

Will I watch it again?  Sure.

I've seen this a few times over the decades and it's still a fun flick.  The performances are great, especially from Mostel who brings a lot of energy, the songs are catchy and it looks fabulous.  At times it has a Carry On vibe but the jokes are more consistently funny and the film doesn't drag.  It's not a knee-slapper, which is what I keep hoping it'll turn out to be when I watch it about once every ten years, but it's still a delightfully amusing film with a lot going for it.  If you ever get a chance to see the staged musical it's based on, do so.  Being in a room full of people laughing does wonders for your health.