Top Secret!

"Extraordinary"

Top Secret! Review


I don't care what the Zucker-Abrahams-Zuckers say, Top Secret! is the best parody/farce ever made.

On the new DVD's commentary track -- the trio behind Airplane!, Hot Shots, and a few other classic (and less classic) parodies -- the ZAZ crew are candid about being less than happy with their work in retrospect, and while the film is certainly dated, I still think it's a real winner.

And I'll prove it:

1) Val Kilmer owns this movie. He sings, he dances, he tells jokes like he was born a Marx brother. Between this and Real Genius, Kilmer proves he was born for comedy, second only to maybe Peter Sellers as the most naturally funny guy alive.

2) The script is funny, too. The punchlines come fast and furiously, and even the ZAZ guys admit there are more gags here than in Airplane! I think they're funnier too. The Airplane! "drinking problem" is humorous but overused in the movie. Top Secret!'s jokes are repeated only once or twice (witness the hilarity of the return of a certain 110-volt electrical device), and rarely do they misfire. This is of course a matter of opinion, but if mocking WWII and Elvis movies together sounds like your cup of tea, you'll probably dig the humor here.

3) The songs -- yes, this is a musical, and Kilmer does all his own singing -- are great. Inspired/borrowed from Beach Boys and Elvis tunes, they're hummable and memorable in their own right.

4) Omar Sharif! And Peter Cushing!

ZAZ guys, give your movie more credit. Sure 12 people on earth have seen it, sure the Elvis genre was well dead by 1984, and sure most of your cast went AWOL the day production wrapped, but this is a genuinely funny film. I heard you laughing on the commentary track -- and we're laughing along with you. I stand by my opinion: Top Secret! makes Airplane! look about as funny as Babette's Feast.

A must-see!



Top Secret!

Facts and Figures

Run time: 90 mins

In Theaters: Friday 8th June 1984

Box Office Worldwide: $20.5M

Budget: $9M

Distributed by: Paramount Home Video

Production compaines: Paramount Pictures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 76%
Fresh: 26 Rotten: 8

IMDB: 7.2 / 10

Cast & Crew

Starring: as Nick Rivers, as Hillary Flammond, as Buchhändler, as General Streck, as Rebellenführer, as Colonel von Horst, Harry Ditson as Du Quois, as Déjà Vu, Eddie Tagoe as Chocolate Mousse, as Agent Cedric, as Major Crumpler, Billy J. Mitchell as Martin, Nicks Manager, as Blinder Andenkenverkäufer, as Dr. Paul Flammond

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

The Party Movie Review

The Party Movie Review

Comedies don't get much darker than this pitch-black British movie, written and directed by Sally...

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

Noah Baumbach (Frances Ha) is on his way to becoming the new Woody Allen, which...

6 Below Movie Review

6 Below Movie Review

Based on an astonishing true survival story, this film is subtitled "Miracle on the Mountain",...

Mother Movie Review

Mother Movie Review

Darren Aronofsky doesn't make fluffy movies, and has only had one genuine misfire (2014's Noah)....

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

It's been 35 years since Ridley Scott's 1982 sci-fi classic, which was set in 2019....

On the Road Movie Review

On the Road Movie Review

Wolf Alice fans are likely to be rather disappointed by this hybrid documentary-drama about the...

Borg/McEnroe Movie Review

Borg/McEnroe Movie Review

Skilfully made by Swedish filmmaker Janus Metz (the award-winning Armadillo), this film is essentially a...

Advertisement
The Glass Castle Movie Review

The Glass Castle Movie Review

There are quite a few terrific moments in this true story, based on the memoir...

Home Again Movie Review

Home Again Movie Review

Reese Witherspoon is so likeable that she can carry even the most hackneyed of romantic...

Brimstone Movie Review

Brimstone Movie Review

An unnerving Western with a sharp female perspective, this film is a series of gruesome...

Kingsman: The Golden Circle Movie Review

Kingsman: The Golden Circle Movie Review

Two years ago, Kingsman: The Secret Service seemed to come out of nowhere, ruffling feathers...

Goodbye Christopher Robin Movie Review

Goodbye Christopher Robin Movie Review

This biopic about Winnie the Pooh author A.A. Milne may look like the usual lushly...

Wind River Movie Review

Wind River Movie Review

After writing the superb Sicario and Hell or High Water, Taylor Sheridan moves back into...

The Vault Movie Review

The Vault Movie Review

Filmmakers Dan Bush and Conal Byrne attempt a mash-up of a frantic heist movie with...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.