What’s Up, Doc? in 35mm with Clue in 35mm 

What’s Up, Doc? in 35mm with Clue in 35mm 

What’s Up, Doc?
Modeled after Hawksian farces and classic Looney Tunes and updated for the Me Generation, Peter Bogdanovich’s pitch-perfect screwball comedy finds a fast-talking Judy Maxwell (an effervescent Barbra Streisand) careening into the life of bumbling musicologist Howard Bannister (prime Ryan O’Neal) and his domineering fiancée (Madeline Kahn in her screen debut) as a mix-up over four identical plaid (it was the ’70s!) suitcases unfolds in San Francisco. Though neither Streisand’s nor Kahn’s characters are explicitly Jewish, screenwriter Buck Henry and director/story writer Bogdanovich were born into Jewish families, and the comedic traditions of Yiddish theater, clever Catskills timing, and vaudevillian slapstick abound in one of the most hilarious comedies of its decade.

DIRECTED BY: Peter Bogdanovich. WRITTEN BY: Buck Henry, David Newman, Robert Benton. STORY BY: Peter Bogdanovich. WITH: Barbra Streisand, Ryan O’Neal, Madeline Kahn, Kenneth Mars. 1972. 94 min. USA. Technicolor. English. Rated G. 35mm. Print courtesy of the Academy Film Archive.

From a story by Jewish writers John Landis and Jonathan Lynn, this darkly comedic adaptation of the popular Parker Brothers board game takes a page from the spate of Agatha Christie book-to-screen projects of the 1970s. Convening a murderer’s row of ’80s comedic actors, including Jewish actors Madeline Kahn and Lesley Ann Warren, this cult-favorite whodunit allows Kahn to showcase her impeccable gift of timing as the poised yet untrustworthy Mrs. White, while Warren exercises her career-long comedic chops as Miss Scarlet three decades prior to her lauded Desperate Housewives role. Considered middling upon its release, Clue soon found its adoring audience on home video and through revival screenings.

DIRECTED BY: Jonathan Lynn. WRITTEN BY: Jonathan Lynn. WITH: Eileen Brennan, Tim Curry, Madeline Kahn, Christopher Lloyd. 1985. 88 min. USA. Color. English. Rated PG. 35mm. 

Academy Museum film programming generously funded by the Richard Roth Foundation. 

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