Groove Tube [1974]

This collection of satirical sketches about television was released in 1974, the heyday of obvious pop-culture humor along the lines Cheech and Chong. With Saturday Night Live still a few years away, Chevy Chase made an appearance here, and one can see the acute sensibility that would redefine television comedy in its early form. Some of the gags work well but most are pretty dispensable; some are a bit crude. On the plus side, it's nice to see Richard Belzer (from TV's Homicide) in his sharp-tongued, formative stage. While not brilliant, the film did serve as one influence on the rise of ironic humor in the '70s. --Tom Keogh

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