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  • Writer's pictureStephen Yanni

History of the World Part I - A Timeless Comedy Masterpiece!

Rating: ★★★★★

Released 06-12-1981

Watched 03-19-2023

Reviewed 04-20-2023

Watched on DVD

"It's good to be the king!"

As a devout fan of Mel Brooks, I recently had the pleasure of re-watching the classic comedy, "History of the World: Part 1" (1981), and it truly deserves a 5-star rating. This film is an ingenious, side-splitting romp through various historical periods, showcasing the comedic genius of Mel Brooks at his finest.

Brooks' brilliant satire takes us through different eras, from the Stone Age to the French Revolution, poking fun at historical figures, events, and societal norms. With an ensemble cast of talented comedians, including the likes of Madeline Kahn, Harvey Korman, and Gregory Hines, each scene is filled with unforgettable moments and laughter-inducing dialogue.

The variety of sketches and musical numbers in this film is simply astounding. Brooks' depiction of the Roman Empire, where he plays Comicus, a stand-up philosopher, is a delightful mix of slapstick and witty wordplay. The Spanish Inquisition, presented as a Broadway musical number, is a hilarious display of clever choreography and tongue-in-cheek lyrics.

The visual gags and costumes also contribute to the overall hilarity of the film. The attention to detail in every scene is impeccable, and it's clear that a lot of effort was put into making the sets and costumes as authentic as possible while still maintaining the humorous tone.

What sets "History of the World: Part 1" apart from other comedies is Brooks' ability to find humor in the most unexpected places, tackling even the darkest aspects of human history with a light touch. This film serves as a reminder that laughter truly is the best medicine, and it's a testament to the timelessness of Mel Brooks' brand of comedy.

In conclusion, "History of the World: Part 1" is a must-watch for fans of satire, history, and comedy in general. With its timeless humor, brilliant cast, and excellent execution, it's no wonder this film remains a beloved classic nearly half a century after its release. Five stars, without a doubt!

We watched this prior to watching the new History of the World Part II on Hulu, and while that show was OK, it does not hold a candle to the original.

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