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Sunday, July 16, 2006 

The Producers: The movie musical


Title: The Producers: The movie musical

Starring: Nathan Lane, Matthew Broderick, Uma Thurman

Director: Susan Stroman


      You've loved it as a movie, America adored it as a Broadway musical, and now we can all laugh again with The Producers: The movie musical! Yes, Mel Brooks, the only man shrewd enough, crude enough, and Jewish enough, has decided to cash in on the Producers a third time! And the taste is ever so sweet, the third time is just as much of a charm as the first and second.

     Heading the bill are Matthew Broderick and Nathan Lane, who starred in the Broadway adaptation. They shine on screen, with Broderick channeling the shy Leo Bloom, and Lane schmoozing his way into our hearts as big time Broadway producer Max Bialystock. The duo have perfect on screen chemistry, bouncing off of one another in a way not seen in recent cinema. Broderick is one of the most undervalued actors in Hollywood, and this film ought to send him where he belongs, the A list. But the real center of attention is Lane, who manages to mug for the camera, and sing his heart out at the same time.

     Joining them on screen is the vivacious Uma Thurman, slipping into the role of Swedish bombshell Oola. The role of Oola has certainly been beefed up since the original, and it's a good thing too, the romance between her and Bloom evens out the picture, and brings a sappy smile to the face. But the real scene stealer here is Will Ferrel, as the crazy Nazi playwright, as is his modicum, Ferrel becomes the character, cutting loose in his exclamations of love for the Fuhrer.

     The movie really hit's it's stride in the bold, outspoken, downright 'stage-acting,' manner it is played. Everything is bigger, especially the laughs. When we hear the first notes of “Springtime for Hitler,” everything falls into place, we bask in the absurdity, and love it. The film works surprisingly well as a musical, connecting on a level that this reviewer has had no other show match.

     Mel Brooks is one of the hardest working men in showbiz, co-writing the script, producing, and even writing the pitch perfect music. It's a real treat to see one of the few true masters of the shtick basking in the glow of fat piles of cash.

     The Producers delivers, and there is seldom a moment where you won't either be gaping at the screen, or doubled over with laughter. So even if you aren't a fan of musicals, treat yourself, and watch this.



Final Score: 10/10