Brain Donors

Year: 1992
Studio: Paramount
Director: Dennis Dugan
Writer: Pat Proft
Cast: John Turturro, Mel Smith, Bob Nelson
It was only after many repeat viewings of this movie I even realised it was a modern update of the Marx Brothers. And that's not because I've never been a fan of the Marx brothers or don't know who they are - I love their movies. For some reason I just didn't twig.

Which either means it was a cleverly veiled homage or I'm stupid, because the characters of Flakfizer (Turturro), Rocco (Smith) and Roberto (Nelson) are brilliant modern caricatures of Groucho, Chico and Harpo respectively.

The story (if nothing else) is classic Marx brothers - the zany adventures of three fools against the backdrop of a boy meets girl tale complete with a nasty villain and rich but ditzy ballet heiress.

So many riotous lines ('then call me back in half an hour and tell me what the hell I'm talking about') and scenes it's hard to remember them all. And it's almost solely thanks to the screenwriting of Abrahms/Zucker contemporary Pat Proft and especially Turturro in what's still his most obtusely comic role as the ambulance chasing lawyer Flakfizer, whose manic energy is only matched by his lack of scruples.

A classic that deserves a long life.

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