Gene Wilder Tribute Part 2/Blazing Saddles Review

By: Antawn Salinas
Follow me on Twitter: @OwlFeedAntawn

The next movie with Gene Wilder would be his craziest movie if it wasn’t for the one I’m reviewing after this. Blazing Saddles, a Western parody released on February 7, 1974, was directed and written by Mel Brooks. It starred Cleavon Little as Bart, and Gene Wilder as Jim, but his friends call him, Jim (you’ll get the reference when you watch the movie).

blazing_saddles_movie_posterFirst before we get into the plot, I have to make one disclaimer. THIS MOVIE IS NOT FOR KIDS!! With Young Frankenstein, everyone can watch and enjoy it, even though there are a few adult jokes in there. But with this, there are a lot more adult jokes and it is rated R. It also does something in the movie that also makes it rated R, but I’ll get to that in a little bit.

Now that we got that point out there, here’s the plot. Blazing Saddles is about a slave named Bart (played by Cleavon Little) who is suddenly made a sheriff to ruin a small town. He soon meets Jim the “Waco Kid” (played by Gene Wilder), and they go on a few crazy adventures trying to defend the town with an explosive and crazy climax.

Again, just like Young Frankenstein, this is a hilarious movie. I forgot to mention Mel Brooks direction in my Young Frankenstein review, but he’s a big reason why the movie works. He also makes a cameo in the movie playing the town mayor.

Also what makes the movie work is the other actors. Both the main characters, Bart and Jim, have great chemistry and work great with each other. While in Young Frankenstein, Gene Wilder is more intense, in here, he’s more subdued and relaxed. But he still gets many funny lines and is a memorable character.

Same with Cleavon Little’s character. He’s a great protagonist. While he’s not the funniest character, you root for him through the whole movie. When he does get a funny line, it’s really funny. The same goes for all the other characters.

The controversial thing about the movie is that the “N” word is repeated many times throughout the movie. A lot of the time, it’s done by white people. But, there are two things to keep in mind. The first is that the movie is a parody. It doesn’t take itself very serious at all. The other reason is that the movie takes place in a different time. While the movie was made in 1974, it takes place in the old West in either the late 1800s or early 1900s. It was used so many times to put you in that much uglier time. Besides the main character is an African-American guy, so it wasn’t done to offend anyone. It was done to tell some jokes and immerse you in the time of the movie.

Along with the rest of the jokes (most of them being jokes that involve breaking physics and/or great timing and lines between characters), this is a very funny movie. In fact, it’s one of the best comedy movies of all time.

Conclusion: Go watch this movie if you are over 17! Go right after this review. It’s a great movie with great jokes and characters with a crazy and insane ending. I give this movie a 9 out of 10. This is a big reason why people love Gene Wilder. Well, this and another movie that is filled with pure imagination. You might know what it is.

Click here to read Part One of my Gene Wilder tribute series, my review of Young Frankenstein.