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Site created 12/15/97.

review added: 8/27/99

Monty Python's And Now For Something Completely Different
1971 (1999) - Playboy/Columbia (Columbia TriStar)

review by Bill Hunt, editor of The Digital Bits

Enhanced for 16x9 TVs

Monty Python's And Now For Something Completelly Different Film Ratings: A

Disc Ratings (Video/Audio/Extras): B/B/D-

Specs and Features

89 mins, PG, letterboxed widescreen (1.85:1), 16x9 enhanced, full frame (1.33:1), dual-sided, single-layered, Amaray keep case packaging, cast & crew bios, film-themed menu screens, scene access (28 chapters), languages: English (DD 2.0), subtitles: English, Spanish & French, Close Captioned

So you say you like the chaps of Monty Python's Flying Circus, do you? Well, until A&E's DVD set of episodes of the British TV series comes out later this year, there's no better way to enjoy the boys' on-screen antics than Monty Python's And Now For Something Completely Different.

Watching the film, you'll probably recognize much of what you see here as familiar. That's because And Now For Something Completely Different is made up entirely of the best sketches the group did on British TV, simply restaged for the big screen. The film was shot in the early 70s, for American college audiences, who hadn't quite discovered the Python boys yet in syndication. The result is absolutely hilarious, and just downright silly (for which one of the Pythons apologizes profusely several times during the film). You get "The Lumberjack Song", "The Dead Parrot" sketch, and "A Man with a Tape Recorder Up His Nose". You get "Upperclass Twit of the Year", "Nudge, Nudge", and "Silly Army Drills". Hell, you even get "The Funniest Joke in the World". There are some 28 bits in all, and lots of Terry Gilliam's goofy little animated interludes are there along the way. How's that for a comedy-loaded film? If you're a Python fan, you probably remember every bit that I just mentioned. But if any of this sounds unfamiliar to you, then you absolutely don't know what you're missing.

On DVD, this film is presented in fairly good quality. You get anamorphic widescreen on one side of the disc, and full frame on the other. The video is very good-looking, given the age of the film, and its low-production value. It's a little on the soft side, with some light film grain and print dust visible. But the colors are accurate (if muted), and the contrast is generally good. The audio is in Dolby Digital 2.0 only, but that's just fine with me - this isn't a surround sound fest anyway. Extras on the disc include... well there really aren't any except bios of director Ian MacNaughton, and the rest of the Pythons. And the scene selection menu is setup by "sketches", so that you can jump from one funny bit to the next as you please - okay, not really an extra, but convenient.

By now it's obvious that And Now For Something Completely Different isn't going to win any DVD awards. But who cares? Columbia gives you exactly what you need on this disc - decent quality, anamorphic widescreen, and plenty o' Monty. So what are you waiting for? Pick yourself up some Python on DVD and give it a spin! You'll be glad you did. Wink, wink, nudge, nudge... know what I mean?

Bill Hunt

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