Comedy Gold - Rare Hilarities from the Archive - Fri. Mar. 21 - 8PM


Oddball Films presents Comedy Gold - Rare Hilarities from the Archive, a night of knee-slappers, spoofs and slapstick; rare treasures, award-winners and comedy classics from greats like The Marx Brothers, Mel Brooks, Madeline Kahn, Lucille Ball, Ernie Pintoff, Charlie Chaplin, W.C. Fields and more.  All four Marx Brothers bring us ridiculous warfare that includes dozens of costume changes, parliament breaking into song and Harpo Revere in This is War? (1933, excerpts from Duck Soup)Madeline Kahn stars in her first speaking role (well, speaking in mock Swedish) in the Bergman spoof De Düva (1968). We've got a double-shot of animated hilarity from the great Ernie Pintoff; his Oscar-winning animated short The Critic (1963) starring Mel Brooks and the bizarro beatnik cartoon The Interview (1960).  Charlie Chaplin skates his way through calamity after calamity in the silent slapstick The Rink (1916).  The original comedic curmudgeon, W.C. Fields takes a fun poke at the Great Depression in California Bound (1934). Renee Taylor wrote and starred in the absurd Fellini spoof Two (1971) that has left more than one audience in stitches.  Lucy and Ethel face off with a conveyor belt of chocolate in the much-loved Job Switch segment from I Love Lucy (1952). The SNL sketch Doubletalk (1975) lets you in on what everyone is really thinking when a boy has to meet his date's parents. Plus!  Bizarre 1950s TV spoof Nut House Nuggets, with faux commercials, original Trailers for Meatballs, Up in Smoke, Women in Revolt and a visit from everyone's favorite bad-luck clay fellow Mr. Bill!


Date: Friday, March 21st, 2014 at 8:00pm
Venue: Oddball Films, 275 Capp Street San Francisco
Admission: $10.00 Limited Seating RSVP to or (415) 558-8117



This is War? (B+W, 1933)
In these slapsticky excerpts from Duck Soup, all four Marx Brothers sing out a war cry for Freedonia, then proceed to wage a musical war, complete with a dozen or so costume changes from all the wartime periods of history.

De Düva (B+W, 1968, Dir. George Coe/Antony Lover)
Nominated for an Oscar (Best Short Subject – Live Action) in 1969, this short parodies three of Ingmar Bergman’s films – Wild Strawberries, The Seventh Seal, and The Silence. It also marked the first film role of Madeline Kahn. Speaking in mock Swedish, with English subtitles, a retired physicist with a hernia recalls, while sitting in an outhouse, a garden party he attended as a youth. In a game of badminton rather than chess, Death loses his intended victim because of a hilarious obstacle – a dirty pigeon. Director George Coe was one of the original cast members on the first three episodes of Saturday Night Live. And scriptwriter Sid Davis, who also plays the role of Death, is perhaps best known as a director/producer of educational safety films; he was also a long-time body double for John Wayne. (Tom Warner)


A Double-Dose of Comedy Cartoons from Ernie Pintoff!

The Interview (Color, 1960) dir. Ernest Pintoff
Animated short by the brilliant Ernie Pintoff has square interviewer befuddled by fictional hipster jazz musician Shorty Petterstein (voiced by Henry Jacobs) as the Stan Getz combo blows and riffs “off camera”.  “Like, don’t hang me- I didn’t wanna fall up here in the first place!”

The Critic (Color, 1963)
Another animated Oscar winner from the great Ernie Pintoff- The Critic is Mel Brooks, sitting in a movie theater. Loudly describing/deriding what he seeds on the screen (a spoof of a Norman McLaren-styled animation). Brooks' old man character relentlessly rags on the experimental animation he's shown to hilarious effect.


The Rink (B+W, 1916)
Chaplin’s skill as a pantomime artist involves his mimetic ability to transform into objects with which he interacts, through bodily rhythms both rigid and loose. Alternately, the relationship of his body with other objects changes their nature, bringing them to life through his engagement with them. In The Rink, Chaplin demonstrates his comedic athleticism in his attempts to woo a young Edna Purviance at the roller skating rink.

California Bound (B+W, 1934)

In this digest version from "It's A Gift", legendary comedian (and famous drunk) WC Fields sells his store and takes his family on a trip to California to live on an orange ranch he purchased. Arriving at their ranch, they find a dilapidated disaster and all seems lost when the millionaire owner of the estate who ejected them earlier shows up desperately needing the property. The Bissonette family is on easy street! The Library of Congress deemed “It’s A Gift” as "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant films" and  added to the National Film Registry for preservation.


Two (Color, 1971) 

Spoof of overwrought Italian films written by and starring Reneé Taylor (Fran's mother on The Nanny and nominated for an Oscar for Lovers and Other Strangers).  A delicious send up of your art house favorites by way the Borscht Belt! A glamorous pair of Fellini rejects find themselves on an empty beach and become tangled in an absurd frenzy of neurotic passion and brutal debasement!  The Two lovers try to out-passion each other, then out-debase themselves until the woman walks away in disgust.In perfectly awful Italian and Yiddish with subtitled in English. Written by and starring Reneé Taylor (nominated for an Oscar for Lovers and Other Strangers).

Job Switch excerpt, I Love Lucy (B+W, 1952, William Asher)

Lucy and Ethel fib their way into sweet new jobs at Kramer’s Kandy Kitchen, only to find too much of a good thing can be pretty awful. One of the most beloved  episodes in TV history, it’s as fresh today as when Truman was president!  You know it, you love it and now it’s time to see it with a crowd of fellow Lucy fans at Oddball Archive! Let’s drown out those 60 year old “studio” laughs.

Nut House Nuggets!! (B+W, 1950s)
This "Viewer's Digest” spoof of soap operas and other programs is a bizarre gem.  Watch a simulated commercial for Gains Horse Food (made from dogs), a lodge meeting where a cake comes out of a dummy of a woman, "commercials" for Quigleys Menthol bubble-gum and Prudential Underarm Deodorant.  "News bulletin" about a zookeeper who clawed a leopard to death." Later in a spoof of "amazing feats," a woman tells time by beating a baby carriage with a dead fish.  The fish is 5 minutes slow, so they give her a watch!
Starring Kathy “Nut House Squirrel Girl". Brought to you by Maidenform Sweat Sox!


Doubletalk (Color, 1975) 
Hilarious short! A boy picks up his date at her home and meets the parents- and we hear what everyone is really thinking over the niceties and conversation. Originally broadcast on Saturday Night Live, this forgotten gem plays like a distilled Meet The Parents and is also notable as the film debut of Robert Picardo (Star Trek: Voyager).