Mark Twain Tonight! [1967]

Genre: Comedy
Come meet Mark Twain. OK, true, the humorist has been dead for more years than we care to remember, and not many of us around today were alive to hear what he sounded like. But Hal Holbrook is so spectacular in his one-man performance that you could swear you were listening to Twain himself. The gravelly voice, the lined face, the slow shuffle, and cigar-induced throat clearings seem so natural that you'll have difficulty recognizing Holbrook beneath the white suit, the gray hair, and the handlebar mustache. Mark Twain Tonight! began as a Broadway show in the 1960s and was filmed as a CBS special in 1967. Yet you'd never know it, because the humor, which is more than a century old, is still laugh-out-loud funny today. Twain--I mean, Holbrook--gives a monologue that is rambling, intelligent, and humorous as he culls together commentary from a variety of Twain sources. From dachshund hounds, politics, and patriotism to cigar smoking, memory loss, and religion, this 90-minute video leaps from subject to subject as we're entertained by material that's as fresh today as it was when it was written in the 1800s. --Jenny Brown

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