Life of Brian (1979)
December 3, 2004 at 7:00 and 10:00pm in 26-100 and
December 5, 2004 at 7:00pm in 26-100.
Monty Python delivers a scathing, anarchic satire of both religion and Hollywood's depiction of all things biblical with their second--and tightest--full-length film. The setting is the Holy Land in 33 A.D., a time of poverty and chaos, with no shortage of messiahs, followers willing to believe in them, and exasperated Romans trying to impose some order. At the center of it all is Brian Cohen (Graham Chapman), a reluctant would-be messiah who rises to prominence as a result of a series of absurd and truly hilarious circumstances that parallel the life of Christ--providing ample opportunity for the entire ensemble (John Cleese, Eric Idle, Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones, Michael Palin, and Chapman) to shine in multiple roles as they blaspheme and mock everyone and everything from ex-lepers, Pontius Pilate, and the art of haggling to crazy prophets, Roman centurions, and crucifixion.
Directed by Python Terry Jones, Monty Python's Life of Brian is an uproarious biblical parody that does to ancient Rome what The Holy Grail did to the Middle Ages. Rome is run by pathetic wimps, liberation fronts fight with each other over acronyms, and gladiators put on bloody children's matinees as the people search desperately for someone to lead them out of their life of misery and poverty. And Brian is that man. Sort of. Well, not really. Chapman excels as Brian, a simple, quiet man suddenly thrust in the role of leading the revolution--while constantly being yelled at by his shrew of a mother. [rottentomatoes.com]
"There is little doubt that The Life of Brian represents some of the most daring and cutting edge comedy of the 1970s."
-- James Berardinelli, Reelviews. Read this review.