What’s Up, Doc?

What's Up, Doc?

What’s Up, Doc? (Director: Peter Bodganovich, US, 1972): I’d seen this film on “best of” lists for years, but was always a bit afraid I’d be disappointed. This was Peter Bogdanovich’s homage to the screwball comedies of the 1930s, and these things can be pretty bad in the wrong hands. But I must admit I laughed quite a lot. Barbra Streisand is not my favourite singer in the world, but she’s actually quite a good comic actress. Ryan O’Neal plays the straight man perfectly. But for me, the highlight was watching the hilarious work of the supporting actors, including Madeline Kahn in her first film role, Austin Pendleton (looking an awful lot like Dave Foley from Kids In The Hall), and especially Kenneth Mars. It was also a treat that the setting was San Francisco, and the requisite car chase scene was riotously staged up and down the hills. To top it off, there’s even a jab at O’Neal’s most well-known role in Love Story (1970). The new DVD release has commentaries from Bogdanovich and Streisand, though I didn’t get a chance to listen to those.


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One Response to What’s Up, Doc?

  1. September 2010 Update: Just got the new Blu-ray version and although there are no new extras, thanks to the high-definition transfer the garish 70s wardrobe and art direction is now just as crisp as the smart-alecky dialogue. Bravo!

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