Analyze This

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Mobster Paul Vitti is having problems after surviving an assassination attempt. It just so happens that hit man “Jelly” has run into (literally rear-ended while driving) a therapist, Ben Sobel. Vitti shows up in Sobel’s office, and before the session is over, Vitti has a therapist. The only problem is, Dr. Ben Sobel is getting married and you never know when a mobster is going to show up and need a quick session. 

This is a wonderful comedy that plays off of the typical gangster cliches, to the point of  discussing who is Fredo in Dr. Sobel’s dream. A mobster in therapy just sets up nice for so many comedic opporotunities. Mob Boss Paul Vitti is played by Hollywood heavyweight Robert DeNiro (Best Actor Raging Bull, Best Supporting Actor Godfather II).  I am glad DeNiro didn’t stay typecast as a too tough crime character after playing in so many of those roles, because he certainly does play well in comedies, especially this role and as the CIA Dad in Meet the Parents. Deniro’s performance and facial expressions are absolutely great in this film, a real treat to watch.

Dr. Ben Sobel played by comedian Billy Crystal (City Slickers, When Harry Met Sally), and is a perfect match to DeNiro. Crystal is great at subtle lines,  very quick witted lines that are wonderful. The underated performance has to go to Joe Viterelli (Mickey Blue Eyes)who plays Jelly. He is the ultimate lovable thug.

This film is directed by Harold Ramis (Caddyshack), and is a much better representation of his work than the junk he spit out earlier this year in Year One. In all, this is a very entertaining film and is worth catching when you are in the mood for something light hearted that will make you laugh.Check it out for sure!

Year One

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After a day of errands in the Texas sun, nothing sounded better than taking in a movie in the heat of the day. Let me tell you, year one was so funny I think I would have laughed more if I would have sat in the car with my windows rolled up and poached in my own sweat! I tend to find something redeeming in the worst movies, but this one has absolutely no redeeming qualities what so ever.

I was worried about this one in the first few minutes when in the caveman days, they couldn’t even have fun with caveman talk or anything. As far as performances, Jack Black (Nacho Libre) was his over the top self and when he is on, he is funny, but there was nothing to work with and he was nothing more than annoying. Michael Cera (Juno)…well, it’s sad to say, but I think he is already stereotyped as an actor as he is stuck playing the same shy innocent kid, often stumbling on his words. He was doing nothing more than going through his lines, and the lines were awful at that. As far as the other appearances, Christopher Mintz-Plasse (McLovin in Superbad) had a role so small he shouldn’t have even been in the movie. As for the other well rounded actors, Oliver Platt (Frost Nixon), Vinnie Jones, Hank Azaria, Xander Berkeley…every dang one of you should be ashamed for taking a paycheck to put out such trash. In fact, everyone in this should give there money back and donate it to a charity so something good will come from this junk movie.

Which brings us to the root of all of this. Harold Ramis. I usually view Harold Ramis as a great comedian, writing such scripts as Analyze This, Groundhog Day, Ghostbusters, Stripes, Caddyshack…..see where I am going with this……he is a very funny guy. If this is the best he can offer now…please just retire….that means retire from directing, writing and acting. Harold Ramis was all three in this piece of garbage.

The highlight of the acting….well, it’s a tie. I tie between the tree where the piles of feces was at that Jack Black thought it was funny to pick up, flick his tongue on and even eat. This Poor tree had to make it through that god awful performance, yet stood strong, and knew what it’s role was, a tree…and what a good tree it was. The other performance was from the second rock thrown in the stoning scene, making it through Michael Cera’s lifeless acting, the stone came through with flying colors smashing into his no thinking skull.

If it weren’t for the air conditioning and already invested $4.50 in a coke, I would have walked out very very early. It is enough to sit through a scene watching Mr Black savor the flavors of feces, but the putting up with urine running into someones mouth and up their nose…just a riot! Not that I am opposed to “bathroom” humor at all, I am a guy! But this movie was a poor excuse for a movie and anyone even remotely associated with this should be banned from making further video pollution. I cannot think of any way that this would be funny at all, and my advice, avoid at all costs. You’ll get more pleasure shutting your hand in a car door.

After talking my wife into going to Year One, I am sure my picking movie privileges will be revoked for at least a year and a half. Thanks Harold Ramis for wasting 2 hours of my life.