Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid – Carl Reiner, director, 1981
JOHN: I saw this when if first came out and thought it deserved a second viewing. It is a clever idea – using bits of old movies integrated into a Steve Martin/Carl Reiner new plot. But…. It doesn’t work (if it ever did). Why? The actors are good; the conceit, praiseworthy, the interjection of old footage, flawless; but it reminds me of someone trying to write a poem in the form of a sonnet. It is way too self-conscious. Just write the goddamn poem.
GO (1 GO out of 4)
SPANKY: If anything it makes me wish I were seeing the original films. Sure there are some clever one-liners, like audience banter in the old “Mystery Theater” TV program. But, this is wasted talent and the fact that so much effort has gone into it makes the waste seem even greater. To give it some credit, when it first came out people weren’t into old noir movies. Maybe this helped bring that about, I don’t know. However, we might say about some films, “They don’t make them like they use to.” Let’s hope they never make them like this again.
BARK (1 BARK out of 4)