|The Kentucky Fried Movie|
Robert K. Weiss
Evan C. Kim
|Cinematography:||Robert E. Collins|
Stephen M. Katz
|Editing:||George Folsey Jr.|
|Distributor:||United Film Distribution |
Starz Home Entertainment (DVD)
|Released:||August 10, 1977|
|Gross:||$20,000,000 (Global) = $15,000,000 (USA) + $5,000,000 (Non-USA)|
The Kentucky Fried Movie is an American comedy film, released in 1977 and directed by John Landis. The film's writers were the team of David Zucker, Jim Abrahams and Jerry Zucker. This same team would go on to write and direct Airplane!, Top Secret! and the Police Squad! television show and its movie spinoffs, The Naked Gun films. The "feature presentation" portion of the film stars Evan C. Kim and hapkido Grand Master Bong Soo Han. Among the numerous cameo stars were George Lazenby, Bill Bixby, Tony Dow, Donald Sutherland, and the voice of Shadoe Stevens. The movie also features many former members of The Groundlings theater, as well as some from The Second City.
The Kentucky Fried Movie has no unified plot; it consists of numerous sketches that parody 1970s TV commercials, drive-in movies and educational films shown in schools. The skits spoof kung-fu movies (particularly Enter the Dragon, as displayed in the film's "feature presentation"/longest segment), courtroom TV shows, women-in-prison movies and pornography (or more specifically, advertising for pornography).
A common target of these sketches is exploitation films, many of them produced by the mythical "Samuel L. Bronkowitz" (a conflation of Samuel Bronston and Joseph L. Mankiewicz) who seems to be producer for all of the parodies. For example, a spoof of early martial arts movies such as Enter the Dragon is parodied as A Fistful of Yen in imitation of A Fistful of Dollars. A Fistful of Yen is the longest sketch and arguably the most popular in the movie.
One preview appears for the disaster film That's Armageddon. Some segments make fun of television commercials from the 1970s, public service announcements, and high school science films (Zinc Oxide and You). Short movie parodies are presented as satires of "Coming Attractions" trailers, and longer parodies represent "feature" films. The city of Detroit and its high crime rate are a part of a running gag throughout the clips, each reference jokingly portraying the city as a sort of hell-on-Earth.
Another notable parody in the film is Rex Kramer, Danger Seeker. The bit parodies the 1973-1974 television show, Thrill Seekers. Part-time airline mechanic, full-time daredevil Rex Kramer vows to take on the most dangerous situations possible "for the sake of adventure." (The name Rex Kramer would later be given to Robert Stack's character in Airplane!.) Zinc Oxide and You is the spoof of a high school science film. The plot is straightforward - as the announcer intones "without zinc oxide, you would not have ...", then there is a "ding" and the noted object disappears, with successively more disastrous results. The results can be guessed at from the title of the next film (introduced but not shown), which is Rebuilding your Home.
A.M. Today presents several animals, including a "rare" specimen that looks just like a golden hamster. Between cuts to a bland news show it also features a gorilla who rips off the female host's clothing and then destroys the studio.
The film's original production budget was $650,000 and later increased to $1,000,000 after post-production costs were added in. The film grossed about $20 million, making it one of the most financially lucrative films of the 1970s, and one of the most successful comedies of all time. It has become a cult favorite for fans of the comedy genre.
Some consider Amazon Women on the Moon to be a sequel to this movie, due to the similar style of the two films and John Landis' involvement as a director of a few sketches. This is evident in the French title of the film The Cheeseburger Movie, while The Kentucky Fried Movie is The Hamburger Movie. Also, IMDB lists one of the film's working titles as "The Kentucky Fried Sequel."
The film's credits listed the sketches incorrectly, as the writers changed the order after the credits had been written.The following list is in the running order used in the film: Sketch Details
|width=40%||11 O'Clock News (Part 1) (:04)||A news announcer tells the movie's viewers the popcorn they are eating has been pissed in...Film at 11.|
|Argon Oil (1:13)||A commercial for a company that found ways to produce oil from Acne, Italian people's hair (taken from combs in their trash) and US fast food.|
|A.M. Today (6:05)||A news correspondent can't hear the announcers, and thus ignores them completely and is busy scratching his butt. A male Republican debater then claims welfare payments only preserve poverty. The female Democratic debater curses him and gives him the finger in response. The show's astrologer has a few cliché remarks, but not before the announcer reminds us it is just meant to support people who can't take responsibility for their own lives.An animal segment introduces a "rare" hamster followed up by a gorilla. The gorilla, that has been unable to perform sexually with females of his kind, becomes enraged by its handler's explanations and suddenly tears off her shirt to reveal her bra. She runs away and every man around tries to stop the gorilla from going wild. However, it defeats them all and then smashes the camera.|
|His New Car (:24)||When a man enters a car, the alarm goes off. As he goes through a succession of actions (locking his door, buckling his seatbelt, etc. the alarm changes in tone until he eventually reached down and zips the zipper on his jeans. The alarm then stops.|
|Catholic High School Girls In Trouble (2:00)||A parody of sexploitation films. One highlight is nudist-like Catholic high school girls, who are later also chained and punished by the school while in the nude for breaking curfew. Another is Uschi Digard's large breasts first being zoomed in and felt by a guy, and later comically squashed against a shower door when he penetrates her from behind. Also, a rather shocked teenager interrupts his intercourse when he realizes it is actually his girlfriend's middle aged mother under the sheets. She claims people always mistake her for her teenaged daughter. Another teenager learns in horror that masturbation made his hands hairy.|
|(See You Next Wednesday in) Feel-A-Round (4:52)||A guy agrees to try out a cinema that literally illustrates its movies for its viewers. The usher takes the role of the on-screen female lover. As she asks her male lover to smell her perfume, the usher aggressively sprays the viewer with said perfume. It eventually proceeds to chest rubbing and then to a lovers' quarrel. The latter culminates with a knife to the throat but ends with a quick kiss. The cinema's announcer invites the guy to also stay over for the next movie - Deep Throat. The viewer runs away screaming when he sees the wicked smile on the usher's face.|
|Nytex P.M. (:35)||A commercial for a drug that cures headaches by making the receiver unconscious.|
|High Adventure (3:01)||A talk show's boom operator finds the French adventurer guest boring, and causes troubles with his boom mike to both the guest and the host.|
|11 O'Clock News (Part 2) (:05)||Both Russia and the US are being blasted with nuclear warheads...Film at 11.|
|Headache Clinic (:40)||A commercial shows how a clinic's scientists demonstrate their headache curing drug by pounding on people's heads. It is claimed the people are not affected by the pain.|
|Household Odors (:40)||A commercial for household odors that claims if you do not buy them, people will tell you right in your face that your house stinks.|
|The Wonderful World of Sex (4:55)||An African American couple plays back a phonograph record of a how-to guide for sex. After getting down to their underwear, the overly detailed tape eventually instructs them to kiss and begin foreplay. After the male experiences premature ejaculation, the recording sends "Big Jim Slade", a briefs-wearing, muscular, African American "tight end for the Kansas City Chiefs" to carry the woman away and finish up the job of her humiliated partner, backed by a vigorous choral rendition of the song "Shalom aleichem".|
|A Fistful of Yen (31:34)||One missile from the dual Russia-US attack is revealed to be Chinese made. However, the Chinese government denies any involvement. Soon enough, the mastermind behind the attack turns out to be a Chinese Dark Lord. In a parody of Kung Fu movies, a Bruce Lee look-a-like is hired by the UK government (a-la James Bond) to penetrate the lord's mountain fortress and destroy him. The Bruce Lee character refuses at first to work for a government, but complies once he is told he would get to kill dozens of people. The fortress is so organized it even has its own guided tours for their storage of drugs and weapons of mass destruction. When he is discovered, suddenly loud marching band music is heard, and Big Jim Slade from the previous sketch re-appears in his briefs. This time he frees the fortress' prisoners and then begins performing various bodybuilder poses. In a parody of The Wizard of Oz, the Bruce Lee character is sent back to Kansas after his victory and learns it may have all been a dream (or not).|
|Willer Beer (:58)||A beer commercial featuring Hare Krishna monks.|
|11 O'Clock News (Part 3) (:05)||All kinds of disasters happen in the US...Film at 11.|
|Scot Free (:58)||A commercial for a Monopoly-like game based on (former US president) Kennedy assassination theories.|
|That’s Armageddon (2:17)||A parody of the then-common disaster film genre, with "Donald Sutherland as the Clumsy Waiter".|
|United Appeal for the Dead (1:42)||A commercial for an association that supports keeping around corpses of dead people and still treating them like part of the family.|
|"Courtroom" (Part 1) (4:35)||A spoof of a court that takes every word literally and runs like a game show. Also, Beaver and Wally (with the real Tony Dow from the TV series Leave It to Beaver) make wisecracks from the jury stand.|
|Nesson Oil (:14)||A commercial for cooking oil in which someone is "cooking the cat in pure Nesson oil", with the cat angrily protesting.|
|"Courtroom" (Part 2) (3:02)||Beaver and Wally cause trouble in the jury stand, while the main (but also "surprising") witness recognizes the TV announcer himself as the offender in a car accident.|
|Cleopatra Schwartz (1:24)||A parody of blaxploitation films. A love and marriage story of a Pam Grier like character and a Rabbi. Despite their differences, they live a passionate life (highlighted by the couple sitting in bed with satisfied expressions, with her topless).|
|Zinc Oxide and You (1:59)||A parody of classroom educational films that shows what happens to a housewife who has everything that relies on zinc oxide disappear one by one, with increasingly bad results. Among other things, her bra disappears and her large natural breasts instantly sag under her shirt. Also, her car crashes through her house as it has no brakes and her husband's pacemaker stops working. Eventually, the gas control valves on her stove disappear, her kitchen catches on fire, and everything that can stop the fire also disappears. Ends with a brief announcement of the next film in the series, "Rebuilding Your House".|
|"Danger Seekers" (1:02)||A daredevil dresses up in Evel Knievel-like helmet and gear. He then finds a group of African American men playing Cee-lo in an alley. He stands between them, yells "NIIIGGERRRRSSSSS!||" and runs away as they angrily chase him.|
|Eyewitness News (4:24)||A couple stops watching the TV news in favor of having sex. In a parody of Nineteen Eighty-Fours two-way television, as soon as the man exposes the woman's rather large natural breasts, the TV news announcer starts stuttering. As the man performs cunnilingus on the woman, men from the production crew gather around the news announcer to gape. They scream loudly when she reaches an orgasm, but run away in time when the suspicious couple stops and turns around to look at the television. Assuming it was nothing, they resume having sex. This time the woman mounts the man. Almost immediately, the men from the production crew return to the embarrassed news announcer. They share a collective orgasm with the woman.|
|11 O'Clock News (Part 4) (:09)||The news announcer declares he does not wear any pants...Film at 11.|