20 Dumb Comedies (That Are Actually Really Smart)
STRUCTURAL CRITIQUE! Awesome, now that we have your attention, let’s talk about fart jokes. Films with dumb, absurd humor are the bane of serious film reviewers everywhere. Indeed, dumb movies are usually ignored by critics, who only later begin to discover that the film they originally scorned at was actually quite smart. The ZAZ’ Airplane!, but especially Mel Brooks’ classic Blazing Saddles, are prime examples. When Blazing Saddles first came out in 1974, critics found it the bottom of the barrel, and now it’s considered a paradigm of what a smart dumb comedy should be. Therefore, we’d like to offer some new entries to this subgenre (and also smuggle in fancy words like “paradigm” and “therefore”).
Of course, this doesn’t mean the following movies are as good as peak Mel Brooks (although, if we’re allowed the heresy, some of them might just be). Rather, it means that some dumb comedies deserve to be acknowledged for having genuinely smart themes, plots, scripts, or just moments and ideas. We’ve discussed these sorts of comedies here and there (also here and here), but now we thought it’d be an idiotically brilliant idea to explore the topic, mention some overlooked gems, and explain clearly what makes them smarter than their silly reputations might suggest. We’re leaving outside comedies actually challenging our attention spans and even intellects with their witty dialogues and multi-layered jokes (like Woody Allen classics or Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World). Instead, this is all about fart joke-related humor, at least until we finish writing our raunchy sex comedy masterpiece: Hot Bikini Philosopher, PhD.