The King of Comedy

{3.5/5} “Better to be king for a night than shmuck for a lifetime.”

Rupert Pupkin wants to be a stand-up comedian. He practises in front of a fake audience in his basement. One day he manages to have a conversation with famous and beloved talk show host Jerry Langford. Rupert wants to be on Jerry’s show and will do anything to make that happen. Even conspire with Masha, who’s stalking Jerry, to kidnap him and threaten to kill him unless the producers put Rupert on the show.

The King of Comedy was released in 1983.

Robert De Niro (The Mission) plays Rupert, Jerry Lewis (The Nutty Professor) plays Jerry, and Sandra Bernhard (the TV show Roseanne) plays Masha. Diahnne Abbott (Love Streams) plays Rita, a woman Rupert knew in high school and the one he still wants to be his girlfriend. Shelley Hack (the TV show Charlie’s Angels) plays Cathy, Jerry’s secretary. There are also several cameos.

The movie certainly has a point to make, even more relevant now, about the media making people famous who don’t deserve it. But it didn’t grab me as much as I expected it to. I found it mildly amusing but the funny moments were few and far between. De Niro, Bernhard, and Lewis are more than fine in their roles — De Niro and Bernhard have great comedic timing (Lewis probably does too but he plays the straight man here).

The movie was directed by Martin Scorsese (Hugo).

This entry was posted on Sunday, July 29th, 2012 at 7:50 pm and is filed under Reviews of movies. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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