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The Kentucky Fried Movie

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Director  John Landis
Initial DVD release  June 20, 2000
Language  English
6.5/10 IMDb

3.5/5 Blu-ray

Genre  Comedy
Country  United States
The Kentucky Fried Movie movie poster

Writer  Jim Abrahams, David Zucker, Jerry Zucker
Release date  August 10, 1977 (1977-08-10)
Screenplay  David Zucker, Jim Abrahams, Jerry Zucker
Cast  Marilyn Joi (Cleopatra Schwartz), Saul Kahan (Schwartz), David Zucker (Man), Marcy Goldman (Housewife), Donald Sutherland (le serveur maladroit), Bill Bixby (Lui-même)
Similar movies  Nightcrawler, EDtv, Kein Pardon, Tomorrow Never Dies, Independence Day, Information Violence
Tagline  This movie is totally out of control!

The kentucky fried movie 1997 official trailer

The Kentucky Fried Movie is a 1977 independently made American anthology comedy film, produced by Kim Jorgensen, Larry Kostroff, and Robert K. Weiss and directed by John Landis. Among the numerous star cameos are George Lazenby, Bill Bixby, Henry Gibson, Barry Dennen, Donald Sutherland, Tony Dow, Stephen Bishop, and the voice of Shadoe Stevens. According to David Zucker on the DVD commentary track, David Letterman auditioned for the role of the newscaster but was not selected. The film also features many former members of The Groundlings and The Second City. The "feature presentation" portion of the film stars Evan C. Kim and hapkido Grand Master Bong Soo Han. The Kentucky Fried Movie marked the first film appearances of a number of actors who later became famous, as well as being the vehicle that launched the careers of the Zucker brothers, Abrahams, and Landis.


The Kentucky Fried Movie movie scenes

Landis' work on the film was responsible for his being recommended to direct National Lampoon's Animal House in 1978.

The Kentucky Fried Movie movie scenes

The film's writers were the team of David Zucker, Jim Abrahams, and Jerry Zucker, who subsequently wrote and directed Airplane!, Top Secret!, and the Police Squad! television series and its film spin-offs, The Naked Gun films.

The Kentucky Fried Movie movie scenes

The kentucky fried movie 2 4 the guard game show 1977


The Kentucky Fried Movie movie scenes

The Kentucky Fried Movie contains largely unconnected sketches that parody various film genres, including exploitation films. The film's longest segment spoofs early kung-fu films, specifically Enter the Dragon; its title, A Fistful of Yen, refers to A Fistful of Dollars. Parodies of disaster films (That's Armageddon), blaxploitation films (Cleopatra Schwartz) and softcore porn/women-in-prison films (Catholic High School Girls in Trouble) are presented as "Coming Attraction" trailers. The fictional films are said to have been produced by "Samuel L. Bronkowitz" (a conflation of Samuel Bronston and Joseph L. Mankiewicz, but also a spoof of B-movie producer and American International Pictures co-founder Samuel Z. Arkoff). The sketch See You Next Wednesday mocks theater-based gimmicks like Sensurround by depicting a dramatic film presented in "Feel-a-Round", which involves an usher physically accosting a theater patron. Other sketches spoof TV commercials and programs, news broadcasts, and classroom educational films. The city of Detroit and its high crime rate are a running gag portraying the city as Hell on Earth; in "A Fistful of Yen", the evil drug lord orders a captured CIA agent to be sent to Detroit, and the agent screams and begs to be killed instead.

The Kentucky Fried Movie movie scenes

The film is number 87 on Bravo's "100 Funniest Movies," and is considered, along with The Groove Tube, to be one of the groundbreaking films of the entire spoof and mockumentary genres of film making.

Sketch selection

The film's credits listed the sketches incorrectly, as the writers changed the show order after the credits had been written. On second cut, they corrected this error. The following list is in the running order used in the film:

Background and production

David Zucker, Jerry Zucker, and Jim Abrahams made the rounds of the Hollywood studios with the concept for Kentucky Fried Movie and were rejected by all of them, being told that "audiences didn't like movies composed of sketches." Since the three believed in their material, which they had honed in front of the audiences with their improvisational troupe "Kentucky Fried Theater", they decided to make the movie on their own.

A wealthy real estate investor offered to finance the film if they would write a script. After completion of the screenplay, the investor had second thoughts and decided he did not want to finance the film alone. He said he would try to attract other investors if the three filmmakers would produce a ten-minute excerpt of the film, which he would finance. When the trio presented a budget of the short film to the investor, he backed out.

The prospect of shooting the short film so excited the trio that they decided to pay for it themselves. The ten-minute film cost $35,000, and with it they again approached the Hollywood studios. This time they attached young director John Landis to the project. However, once again, the studios turned them down.

Curious as to how audiences would react to their film, they persuaded exhibitor Kim Jorgenson to show it before one of his regularly scheduled films. When Jorgenson saw the short, he "fell out of his seat laughing." He was so impressed that he offered to raise the money needed to make the full-length version. By having his fellow exhibitors screen the film before audiences in their theaters, he convinced them to put up the $650,000 budget. When released, Kentucky Fried Movie was a box-office success, returning domestic American rentals of $7.1 million.

Home media

Anchor Bay Entertainment released the DVD in the U.S. in 2000. This release is presented in widescreen (1.85:1) aspect ratio and full-frame (1.33:1). It includes commentary by John Landis; writers Jerry Zucker, David Zucker, and Jim Abrahams; and producer Robert K. Weiss.

On July 4, 2011, Arrow Video in the United Kingdom released a two-disc special edition DVD with the following special features:

  • Feature presented in widescreen 1.85:1 and full-frame 1.33:1
  • Original mono audio
  • The audio recollections of director John Landis; writers Jerry Zucker, David Zucker, Jim Abrahams; and producer Robert K. Weiss
  • A conversation with David and Jerry Zucker: A feature length interview with the co-creators of The Kentucky Fried Movie, Airplane! and The Naked Gun about their lives and career, from growing up and starting out in show business to their comedy influences and spoofing Midnight Cowboy
  • Jerry Zucker's on-set home video shot during the making of the movie
  • Behind-the-scenes photo gallery
  • Original trailer
  • Four-panel reversible sleeve with original and newly commissioned artwork
  • Double-sided fold-out artwork poster
  • Collector's booklet featuring brand new writing on director John Landis by critic and author Calum Waddell
  • On July 2, 2013, Shout! Factory released the film on Blu-ray in a 1.85:1 aspect widescreen transfer. This version includes the original theatrical trailer and the Arrow DVD release filmmaker commentary and Zucker brothers interview.

    Critical response

    The film received favorable reviews. Review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes gives the film a score of 80% based on 30 reviews.

    At the time, Variety described the film as having "excellent production values and some genuine wit" but also noted that film was juvenile and tasteless.

    Writing three decades later in 2008, Ian Nathan of Empire Magazine calls the film "occasionally funny" ... "in a scattershot and puerile way", and he concludes the film is "smart and satirical but very dated". J.C. Maçek III of PopMatters wrote "The Kentucky Fried Movie is, however, profane, experimental, violent, silly, hilarious and occasionally quite sexually explicit (all of which surely helped its success over the years)."


    The Kentucky Fried Movie Wikipedia
    The Kentucky Fried Movie IMDbThe Kentucky Fried Movie Rotten TomatoesThe Kentucky Fried Movie Blu-ray.comThe Kentucky Fried Movie