Monty Python's Life Of Brian (DVD)

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Monty Python's Life Of Brian (DVD)

Monty Python delivers a scathing, anarchic satire of both religion and Hollywood's depiction of all things biblical with their second--and tightest--f...

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Review of "Monty Python's Life Of Brian (DVD)"

published 17/06/2001 | loulou6
Member since : 24/06/2000
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"Blessed are the Cheesemakers"

I first saw this “blasphemous” Comedy around 1982 in a marquee with about 100 or so other 10 to 18 year olds, the strange thing was that we all belonged to the Methodist Youth Club when we were on a weekend away, only thinking about it now, was it the best film to show budding Methodists??? Since then, I’ve probably watched this movie around 15-16 times, and at each viewing I notice another funny bit that I failed to see the previous time.

It was actually filmed on location in Tunisia in 1978 and released in 1979, and to those who hadn’t seen it considered it to be quite “controversial”, I actually see it as a micky-take of people who follow religion just because they think that’s what they should do. My favourite tag lines are “The film that is so funny it was banned in Norway” and “Honk if you like Brian”.

The team of Monty Python poked fun at the followers of religion in the worst possible (but ultimately the funniest) taste, the gang included/s Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones (who also helped direct the film) and Michael Palin.

-- Plot --
The movie is based around a chap called Brian, who just so happens to be born on the same day that Christ was (25 December ;+) ), unfortunately he’s mistaken for the messiah, and then of course he’s abused, manipulated and exploited by various political and religious factions. He wants to fight the oppression around him so joins an activist gang (The People’s Front of Judea) and accidentally becomes a prophet!

All the team play at least 3 other roles in the film, but Michael Palin pulls off an amazing 12 characters alone, including Mr Big Nose, Pontius Pilate (and his speech impediment) and an ex-leper! Graham Chapman plays Brian exceptionally well, while John Cleese revels in playing the Jewish official and Reg. There is even a cameo part for George Harrison (he of The Beatles) who plays ‘a man in kitchen’, well, he was one of the producers after all!

My favourite scene from the movie is the unrivaled “What have the Romans ever done for us?”, where they go on to list the important innovations from their enemy. This scene is very cleverly thought out and just goes to show what quick-witted men the Monty Python troupe were/are. My other favourite scenes include the stoning “right, who through that?” one, to the scene where after a night of passion with Judith (Sue Jones-Davies) he opens the window offering a full frontal to a street full of followers where he tells them to “**** off”, who then answers “How would you like us to **** off?”.

This movie is in my top 10 favourite comedy films, slightly underneath The Holy Grail, but still in there nonetheless. If you’re a religious nut, you’re not going to enjoy it, if you haven’t got a sense of humour you won’t enjoy it either, but if like me you can see the funny side to anything (even religion) you’ll delight in this completely off the wall flick.

All I have to say is “Always look on the bright side of Life”

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Comments on this review

  • LBuSBu1 published 30/04/2003
    You never know, maybe the man Christians have worshipped for years was just the bloke born in the stable next door to Jesus. Love this film! Favourite scene though was where the man said that he was having freedom instead of crucifixion and on being congratulated said "No just kidding, I am here for crucifixion really! Classic stuff! Take care, Stacey.
  • seagulls-lost-horizon published 13/07/2001
    I love this film, good op
  • Collingwood21 published 17/06/2001
    He's not the messiah, he's a very naughty boy! Great op, I love this film too.
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Monty Python delivers a scathing, anarchic satire of both religion and Hollywood's depiction of all things biblical with their second--and tightest--full-length film. The setting is the Holy Land in 33 A.D., a time of poverty and chaos, with no shortage of messiahs, followers willing to believe in them, and exasperated Romans trying to impose some order. At the center of it all is Brian Cohen (Graham Chapman), a reluctant would-be messiah who rises to prominence as a result of a series of absurd and truly hilarious circumstances that parallel the life of Christ--providing ample opportunity for the entire ensemble (John Cleese, Eric Idle, Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones, Michael Palin, and Chapman) to shine in multiple roles as they blaspheme and mock everyone and everything from ex-lepers, Pontius Pilate, and the art of haggling to crazy prophets, Roman centurions, and crucifixion.<BR>Directed by Python Terry Jones, MONTY PYTHON'S LIFE OF BRIAN is an uproarious biblical parody that does to ancient Rome what THE HOLY GRAIL did to the Middle Ages. Rome is run by pathetic wimps, liberation fronts fight with each other over acronyms, and gladiators put on bloody children's matinees as the people search desperately for someone to lead them out of their life of misery and poverty. And Brian is that man. Sort of. Well, not really. Chapman excels as Brian, a simple, quiet man suddenly thrust in the role of leading the revolution--while constantly being yelled at by his shrew of a mother.


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