Blazing Saddles

Mel Brooks scored his first commercial hit with this raucous Western spoof starring the late Cleavon Little as the newly hired (and conspicuously black) sheriff of Rock Ridge. Sheriff Bart teams up with deputy Jim (Gene Wilder) to foil the railroad-building scheme of the nefarious Hedley Lamarr (Harvey Korman). The simple plot is just an excuse for a steady stream of gags, many of them unabashedly tasteless, that Brooks and his wacky cast pull off with side-splitting success. The humor is so juvenile and crude that you just have to surrender to it; highlights abound, from the lunkheaded Alex Karras as the ox-riding Mongo to Madeline Kahn's uproarious send-up of Marlene Dietrich as saloon songstress Lili Von Shtupp. Adding to the comedic excess is the infamous campfire scene involving a bunch of hungry cowboys, heaping servings of baked beans and, well, you get the idea. --Jeff Shannon

Genre: Comedy, Western
Director(s): Mel Brooks
Production: Warner Bros. Pictures
  Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 2 nominations.
 
IMDB:
7.8
Metacritic:
73
Rotten Tomatoes:
90%
R (Restricted)
Year:
1974
93
15,443 Views

Bart:
Excuse me while I whip this out...

[People cringe back and a woman faints. As he pulls out a letter instead of you-know-what, people sigh - almost sounding disappointed]

Bart:
...By the power invested in me by the honorable William J. Le Petomane...

[People start cocking guns and pointing them at Bart]

Bart:
...I hereby assume the duties of sheriff in and for the township of Rock Ridge.

Reverend:
Gentlemen, gentlemen, let's not let anger rule the day! [waving Bible] As your spiritual leader, I implore you to pay heed to this good book and what it has to say!

[A hole is shot through the Bible; the Reverend turns to Bart]

Reverend:
Son, you're on your own.

[The people are about to shoot Bart at his opening speech until he takes himself hostage]

Bart:
[in a gruff voice, hauling himself by the collar and pressing the muzzle of his gun against his own neck] Hold it! The next man that makes a move, the nigger gets it.

Dr. Johnson:
Hold it men, he's not bluffing! [all but Howard Johnson drop their guns]

Dr. Samuel Johnson:
Listen to him, men; he's just crazy enough to do it!

Bart:
[still gruffly, to Howard] Drop it, or I swear I'll blow this nigger's head ALL OVER THIS TOWN! [minstrel voice] Oh, Lawdy-Lawd, he's desp'at! Do what he say, do what he SAY...! [Howard slowly drops the gun]

[Bart slowly moving towards the sheriff's office, still holding himself hostage]

Harriet Johnson:
Isn't anyone going to help that poor man?

Dr. Samuel Johnson:
Hush, Harriet! That's a sure way to get him killed!

Bart:
[minstrel voice] Oh, Oh he'p me! He'p me! He'p me! Somebody He'p me! He'p me! He'p me! He'p me! [gruffly] Shut up! [covers his own mouth, pushes himself into the office] Oh, baby, you are so talented--and they are so dumb!

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