John Landis chooses some of his favorite comedies for SHC
The Sag Harbor Cinema invited John Landis - director of Animal House and An American Werewolf in London - to be its first guest curator.
Really Funny provided an irreverent Summer with a selection of ten titles chosen by one of the finest
names in American comedy. Covering an ample portion of film history, Landis' selection spanned from Laurel & Hardy to Howard Hawks, Mel Brooks and Melissa McCarthy, and includes lesser known treasures, ready to be rediscovered as Elaine May’s A New Leaf, made in 1971.
“Comedy is the most unforgiving of genres. You either laugh or you don’t. Highbrow, lowbrow, witty words or just slapstick, if it makes you laugh then it's successful. These are of some of the many motion pictures that make me laugh. And laughter is the best way to deal with so much of life,” says Landis of his selection.
All films were presented at Pierson High School Auditorium, 200 Jermaine Ave.
Previous Screenings in this Series
SUNDAY, JUNE 23, 6:00PM
Our first screening of Sons of the Desert had a projector issue, so we offered a DOUBLE FEATURE!
IT'S A GIFT
dir. Norman Z. McLeod, 1934
"W.C. Fields remains a unique comic persona. In this film he plays a put upon everyman who, despite all odds, realizes his dreams." - J.L.
SONS OF THE DESERT
dir. William A Seiter, 1933
"Laurel and Hardy were sublime. Their interplay with one another was always a source a joy. This time the hilarity is increased as they play two married men hopelessly outmatched by their wives." - John Landis
SUNDAY, JUNE 30
THE AWFUL TRUTH
dir. Leo McCarey, 1937
"One of the best (and funniest) films to tackle divorce. With Cary Grant and Irene Dunne in classic form." - J.L.
SUNDAY, JULY 7
HIS GIRL FRIDAY
dir. Howard Hawks, 1940
With film critic Molly Haskell and
Sag Harbor Cinema's Wendy Keys
"The genius idea of changing the sex of one of the leads of The Front Page, this peerless comedy features career high performances of Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell." - J.L.
SUNDAY, JULY 21
dir. Mel Brooks, 1967
"Brooks’ marvelous screenplay perfectly cast. Zero Mostel and Gene Wilder reach comedic heights rarely matched." - J.L.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 4
A NEW LEAF
dir. Elaine May, 1971
"A charming, sweet and truly funny movie about love starring Elaine May and Walter Matthau." - J.L.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 18
dir. John Landis, 1983
"An update on Mark Twain’s The Prince and the Pauper. Eddie Murphy, Dan Aykroyd, Jamie Lee Curtis, Ralph Bellamy, Don Ameche and Denholm Elliot take on Reagan’s America." - J.L.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 8
dir. Michael Hoffman, 1991
John Landis on Soapdish: “A classic farce in the world of daytime soap operas with a great cast and hysterical observations of the actors played by Sally Field and Kevin Kline.”
Following the screening, Director Michael Hoffman joined SHCAC Board Director Susan Lacy for a conversation about the film.
Before Reality TV cornered the market, weekday soap operas provided the melodrama we loved to love and loved to hate. In Soapdish, Robert Harling and Andrew Bergman’s brilliant screenplay centers around Celeste Talbert (Sally Field) and Jeffrey Anderson (Kevin Kline), two actors whose past indiscretions dramatically (and hilariously) inform their present and change their lives, and subsequently the plot of The Sun Also Sets, the popular daytime show in which they both star. Soapdish also features Whoopi Goldberg, Robert Downey, Jr., Teri Hatcher, Cathy Moriarty, Elizabeth Shue, Carrie Fisher, Kathy Najimy, Garry Marshall, and Ben Stein.
Michael Hoffman grew up in Idaho, co-founded the Idaho Shakespeare Festival, and was a Rhodes Scholar. While at Oxford, he wrote, directed and acted in his first feature, Privilege; and created the Oxford University Film Company, a summer program for filmmakers. After the Scottish comedy Restless Natives, he returned to the US to direct Some Girls. In a career that moves fluidly between comedies, drama and period pieces, his credits include: Restoration, One Fine Day, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Emperor’s Club, Soapdish, Promised Land, The Last Station, Best of Me, and Gore.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 15
dir. Larry Charles, 2006
"A comedy where the lead actor (Sasha Baron Cohen) literally puts himself in danger for laughs and political commentary." - J.L.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 22
dir. Paul Feig, 2011
"A broad comedy about women, written by women and starring women. Great slapstick!" - J.L.