While I’m sprawled on my couch during holiday down time, my fave movie to re-watch is not some classic Christmas flick like “Home Alone”, “Die Hard” or “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation”, it’s Caddyshack.
I’m taking this holiday season to celebrate Caddyshack’s 40th anniversary. It opened in theaters in July, 1980.
Yeah, I know it has nothing to do with the holidays, I just love to watch it. Over and over again…
1. It’s Just Plain Fun, Sometimes Raunchy and Most Times Sophomoric
I must admit some of the raunchier, quasi-juvenile scenes make me laugh the most. Like the Baby Ruth in the swimming pool, Al Czervik’s “Hey everyone! We’re all gonna get %@&%” and when Al turns to Mrs. Smails and says, “You want to make $14 the hard way?” My favorite line in the movie is when Judge Smails yells at Spaulding and says: “You’ll get nothing and like it.” Don’t know why, but I laugh my ass off every time Ted Knight delivers it flawlessly.
2. Takes Us Back to Simpler Times
The movie is the personification of politically incorrect on so many levels and that’s why I enjoy it. You couldn’t make the movie in these hyper sensitive times. If you tried, you’d be banished to social media prison for being a Neanderthal, misogynistic, uncouth jerk. Back in the 1980s, comedians were actually funny because they had fewer limitations on where they could take their humor. Now, all we get is boorish acts like Jimmy Kimmel and Trevor Noah.
3. Amazing, Interesting Characters
The casting for Caddyshack was absolute genius. Can you really imagine anybody but Bill Murray playing Carl Spackler, Rodney Daingerfield playing Al Czervik, Chevy Chase as Ty Webb or Ted Knight as Judge Smails. They’re all in my personal Hall of Fame of great characters along with Barney Fife, Vito Corleone, Hannibal Lecter and Harold Francis Callahan (Dirty Harry).
4. Examines the Back Rooms of the Golf World
Caddyshack addresses caddying, gambling on the golf course and maintenance workers in a marvelously funny and entertaining way. Carl Spackler and the gopher are heroes in so many ways. Just as interesting is the way the movie pits the snoo-tay country clubber Judge Smails against the clownish interloper Al Czervik. It’s basically Joseph Golfer v. Joe Golfer in a battle royale of hilarious scenes.
5. Comedic Giants Everywhere
Chevy Chase, Bill Murray, Ted Knight and Rodney Daingerfield are all on my Mount Rushmore of great comics with exceptional timing and an understanding of how to make a character both hilariously funny and believable at the same time. Years ago, I worked at a nightclub and got to talk to Daingerfield for about a half hour. What a brilliant and kind guy. If only they could’ve have worked in Leslie Nielsen, my all-time favorite comedic actor right behind Rodney.
Where’s the popcorn and brewskis, I’m ready to watch Caddyshack again….