Wednesday, October 12, 2016

1972 - WHAT'S UP DOC, a rehash of a 30's screwball comedy.

Bogdanovich's follow up to The Last Picture Show was this slavish recreation of a 1930's screwball comedy particularly a Howard Hawks comedy.  Peter Bogdanovich was entering his boy wonder director genius period of his career.  After this film the critics and the Hollywood studios were so enamored of Bogdanovich that he was labeled the next Orson Welles.

This movie made a ton of money when it was released.  Audiences loved it.  Bogdanovich juggled a pretty good cast of character actors in the usual eccentric character parts that are a staple of this type of film.  The female lead Barbara Streisand did a pretty good job copying Katherine Hepburn from Bringing Up Baby.  Ryan O'Neal seemed very stiff and uncomfortable in the Cary Grant part.

Bogdanovich probably juggled the set pieces about as well as anyone could considering this film was a rehash without one real original idea in it.  Overall the film has a rather curious distancing effect as is Bogdanovich is observing the action from about 2 city blocks away from the action.

What's Up Doc has a big car chase at the end of the film.  Car chases were big stuff in movies in the 1970's they were always a sure fire audience favorite

94 minutes.

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