What are your favourite funny moments on the screen? The word ‘liberating’ comes to mind when I think of my comedy choices. They distract, disengage me from my current orbit and take me to a much better place. The right music, as with comedy, can be playful, and good for the soul. Without alcohol! Great humour and characters also make for repeatable viewing. More so than drama.
Here are some of my choices –
1) The Vicar of Dibley
I came to this late. For those who haven’t see it, this is a British comedy classic starring Dawn French. It’s about a very unique female vicar, her public (but universal) foibles, and her eccentric parishioners. The show is hilarious, using everyday life and comedic tension between the inappropriate yet honest thoughts and feelings of the quirky characters. I especially love the end jokes between the Vicar, Geraldine, and Alice, her dippy verger (Vicar’s assistant). Alice thinks she has a sense of humour, but fails to understand most of these jokes, even when Geraldine explains them to her. They’re a great comedic duo. Five of the jokes are below.
2) Staying with British cult classics, what about Absolutely Fabulous and Black Adder (Tony Robinson as Blackadder’s poker-faced dogsbody, Baldrick, doesn’t even have to open his mouth to make me laugh. I will watch the buffoon, the humorous and the educational Tony in anything, and love his Worst Jobs in History series).
I just discovered that Richard Curtis wrote both Vicar of Dibley and Black Adder. He also wrote Four Weddings and a Funeral, Bridget Jones’s Diary, Notting Hill, and Love Actually. This is beginning to be a tribute to him!
3) Donkey, from Shrek. Combine Eddie Murphy, insecurity, self esteem issues, and a jackass who can’t be silenced or gotten rid of. As usual, a lot of the humour rests in the delivery, not just the script. But here are a few examples –
DONKEY: Look at that. Who’d go and live in a place like that?
SHREK: That would be my home.
DONKEY: Oh, it is lovely! Just beautiful! You know you are quite a decorator. It’s amazing what you’ve done with such a modest budget. I like that boulder. That is a NICE boulder!
Don’t worry, princess. I used to be afraid of the dark until… No, wait. I’m still afraid of the dark.
“Oh, what large teeth you have. I mean white sparkly teeth, I know you probably hear this all the time from your food but you must bleach or something, ’cause that’s one dazzling smile you got there and do I detect a hint of minty freshness?”
4. My last funny favourite for this post, but definitely not the least – Pirates of the Caribbean and Jack Sparrow.
Some say Jack is effeminate, of dubious morals, and an untrustworthy scoundrel. But Jack has women and the audience in the palm of his hand. All is forgiven, and more. Why? Because he’s Johnny Depp, a witty, charming pirate, and he makes us LAUGH. It’s what he does with what he’s got. He entertains, and we’re there for the ride.
So, what makes you laugh on screen?