Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|John Cleese Comedy Collection / How To Irritate People Romance With A Double Bass Strange Case Of The End Of Civilization|
From Monty Python through Fawlty Towers, John Cleese?s creativity, innovation and hilarity altered the world of sketch comedy and sitcoms forever. These three comic gems in The John Cleese Collection are essential viewing ... more »
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Two of three are classics; video quality varies
James A. Vedda | Alexandria, VA USA | 11/25/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Fans of John Cleese, or of British comedy in general, will enjoy this set, but should be aware of a couple of drawbacks.
"Romance with a Double Bass" is a great example of Cleese in classic comedic form. He is also in naked form for a significant portion of this 1974 short film, along with co-star Connie Booth. Amazon's product listing shows this collection as "Not Rated," but this film would get an R rating in the U.S. market. If the nudity - which is an integral part of the story - doesn't bother you, this is a wonderful interpretation of an Anton Chekov short story. However, the video quality is grainy.
"How to Irritate People" was shown on British TV in 1968 and is a collector's item for fans of Cleese and his Monty Python cohorts Michael Palin and Graham Chapman. Perhaps surprisingly, the video quality for this program is the best of the three, even though it is the oldest performance in the set.
"The Strange Case of the End of Civilization," a 1977 Sherlock Holmes spoof, is a bit disappointing, and not just because of inferior video quality. While it has its moments, much of the humor comes off as dumb rather than hilarious. It also has many references to 1970s TV shows about police detectives (Kojak, Columbo, McCloud, Hawaii Five-O, etc.) that would have been funny at the time but will be lost on audiences too young to remember these shows.
The set includes three DVDs in separate boxes, obviously a repackaging of previous releases. The content of all three would fit on one DVD.
Dedicated followers of Cleese's early work will want to have this set and may be willing to overlook its flaws. Anyone who is expecting digitally remastered video or elegant packaging, or who is offended by the nudity in one of the programs, will be disappointed."