Life of Brian (1979)

This is the first time I have seen Life of Brian so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, obviously I have seen the occasionally clip, mainly “He’s not the messiah, he’s a very naughty boy” so that gave me a hint of what the film was about.

I will say that I do feel that some of the jokes have lost their edge over the years and anyone who argues otherwise would do so out of nostalgia. However, that doesn’t mean that ‘Life of Brian’ isn’t funny, it is exceedingly funny, but not the funniest film ever made as it is often accredited as being. The fact that ‘Life of Brian’ is filled with combinations of word play, physical humour, crude jokes and otherwise very clever humour is what makes it stand out more so than say, ‘Dr. Strangelove’.

Of course great comedy is all about the timing and the whole cast has pitch perfect timing, the jokes that land, land phenomenally and oft times, with great style. Not only are the whole Monty Python crew great at bringing the comedy to the table, they are very good actors. In this film the members of Monty Python play various different characters and while some are immediately distinguishable, others are not and it is a testament to their acting.

The production design is outstanding for a comedy film, I feel even nowadays it is a rarity to find a comedy with huge aspirations and the need for huge sets. The sets on ‘Life of Brian’ are used extremely well and are only strengthened by some fantastic cinematography, the ending shot in particular is spectacular as well as very funny.

Although the film has lost some of its jokes over time, I can still appreciate the craftsmanship that has gone in to every single line of dialogue which is delivered perfectly with only the occasional noticeable person fluffing their lines or trying not to laugh. The chemistry as always between the cast is addictive, it just begs you to enjoy the film along with the cast and it works, even if I wasn’t laughing through the entire film, I still had a smile on my face.


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