Stir Crazy

1980

Comedy / Crime

135
IMDb Rating 6.8 10 22,462

Synopsis


Downloaded 13,231 times
June 8, 2019

Director

Cast

Gene Wilder as Skip Donahue
JoBeth Williams as Meredith
Jonathan Banks as Clyde Klepper
Richard Pryor as Arlo Pear
720p.WEB 1080p.WEB
903.08 MB
1280*720
English
NR
23.976 fps
111 min
P/S N/A / N/A
1.73 GB
1920×1080
English
NR
23.976 fps
111 min
P/S N/A / N/A

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by BrandtSponseller 10 / 10 / 10

Humor and suspense

Skip Donahue (Gene Wilder) and Harry Monroe (Richard Pryor) are best friends living in New York City. Donahue is an amateur playwright, working a day job in department store security. Monroe is working as a catering assistant. When Donahue is canned for harassing a starlet and Monroe is fired because his marijuana ends up in the food at a society dinner on the same day, Donahue takes it as the perfect opportunity to finally leave the cold, unfriendly metropolis and head out West. Unfortunately, neither is very well adapted to life outside of New York, and they end up framed for a crime. I hadn't seen Stir Crazy since at least the early 1980s. Recently I had a chance to rewatch Gene Wilder's The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter Brother (1975), which I hadn't seen since the 1970s, and I was a bit disappointed. So I was nervous that Stir Crazy might also be a let down this far removed in time. That couldn't have been more wrong. I may have even thought it was funnier and more exciting this time around than when I first watched the film as a teen. I had forgotten that Stir Crazy isn't just a comedy. It's also fairly suspenseful and surprisingly serious at times in the last act. Director Sidney Poitier makes a smooth transition through many genres--buddy film, road movie, fish out of water story and prison film, aided of course by Wilder and Pryor. While both actors have had plenty of performances just as good as Stir Crazy, neither have had any that were better. In a way, this is really more Wilder's film than Pryor's. That's no slight on Pryor; Wilder just ends up getting more screen time. He presents a hilariously bizarre, complex character who is full of contradictions--kind of a channeling of a less loquacious Woody Allen through a more down to earth version of his Willy Wonka (Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory, 1971). Wilder's Skip Donahue has an air of Mister Rogers-styled good-natured innocence, with the same kind of odd and maybe creepy homoerotic overtones, but he'll also turn on a dime into a neurotic, screaming loon. As I said, it's all very complex, but extremely funny and enjoyable to watch. Pryor's Harry Monroe is more of a streetwise perpetual victim who doesn't adjust to the social world of the criminal justice system as well as Donahue does. He has a much more typical reaction, with no misconceptions about their dire circumstances. The crux of the humor in the first section of the film is the naivety of Donahue's "grass is always greener on the other side" conception of the Western U.S. compared to New York City. Of course, things turn out to be not quite so simple, but it's funny and charming that Poitier and writer Bruce Jay Friedman have Donahue never quite wake up from his naïve misconception. It also turns out to have much more weight than just a comic device: Donahue survives in prison as well as he does, and it brings about the profound changes of character--Donahue becomes much more authentic, realizes his potential, gains material for his art and even gets the girl--because of his continued misprision (in the Bloom sense) about life outside of New York City, and in the end, it enables a "return to the market", as they say in Zen Buddhism. Watching Stir Crazy at this later point in time, some of the humor might seem a bit clichéd to younger viewers. It's important to remember that this is where a lot of those "clichés" came from. In 1980, everyone was mimicking scenes from this film (such "We bad . . .") and repeating dialogue and jokes. Some of the filmic (and by extension general cultural) folklore or urban legends about prisons contained in Stir Crazy had made appearances in films prior to this one, but not in the particular irreverent way that they're satirized here. This is an important film in the careers of a few of the greatest actors and comedians (Wilder, Pryor and Poitier), with an important place in the history of Hollywood comedy. The fact that it's also suspenseful and has philosophical things to say about human nature is a bonus that makes this a film you shouldn't miss.

Reviewed by ccthemovieman-1 10 / 10 / 10

Wilder And Pryor At Their Peak

Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor was a good comedy team of the 1970s, making several hit movies together, this being one of the more memorable. Viewing this movie recently after a 25-year absence, it was a shock to me to hear the language. I had remembered this strictly as a light-hearted comedy but I can see why it's rated "R." That is solely for the language, especially by Pryor, but he was known for his profane humor. If you can put up with that, the film is downright funny, even today. I found myself laughing out loud at a few scenes, all of which I remembered vividly from several viewings in the '70s. They are still just as funny. Who could forget that mammoth criminal with the long, long name - Erland van Lidth de Jeude? He was the guy that scared the hell out of everyone, just by his physical presence. In real life, that man was the opposite of his projected image on screen. He was a graduate of MIT, an accomplished opera singer, an Olympic wrestler, devoted husband and father, writer, etc. The poor man died at the age of 34. It also was interesting to see such a young looking Craig T Nelson and JoBeth Williams. This might have been the best of the Wilder-Pryor films. I was shocked to see that Sidney Poitier directed this movie. I didn't know that until seconds ago when I looked at this IMDb title page.

Reviewed by lee_eisenberg 10 / 10 / 10

crazier and crazier

Everyone likes a prison movie, and everyone likes a Gene Wilder-Richard Pryor comedy, so combine those two genres, and you've got a formidable piece of cinematic history. The two comedians play Skip Donahue and Harry Monroe, a pair of New Yorkers whose lives are going nowhere. After witnessing a very unpleasant scene in a bar, they decide to move out west. In Arizona, they get a job in a bank as dancing woodpeckers. Then, some thugs get hold of the costumes and rob the bank. The crime naturally gets pinned on Skip and Harry, who get put in jail. Adjusting to life behind bars isn't all that easy for them, until Skip everyone discovers Skip's rodeo talent. Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor always made a great comedy team, and "Stir Crazy" is no exception. When I was in fifth grade and the teacher showed us "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory", she told everyone that Gene Wilder was a great actor in many movies. I said "Stir Crazy", and she asked "Uh, did your parents let you see the whole thing?" My parents did let me see the whole thing, although there are some scenes that make it R-rated. But it's a really funny movie; you should see it.

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