Forgotten Friday Flick – “All Of Me”

Keeping the movie comedy coming we’re digging into more past picture hilarity in a bid to extend end of summer fun – welcome to Forgotten Friday Flick!  Everyone familiar with icons in the world of farcical films needs to introduction to laugh-out-loud leading man stylings of the sensational Steve Martin, but this week we’re highlighting one of his lesser-known gems that fans may have missed.  Seems an obnoxious and eccentric rich dame is looking to extend her life past death – and Martin becomes an unwitting participant.  (Isn’t he always?!)  Weird rituals, bewitching soul bowls, spoiled rich gals and one odd toilet flushing mystic provide the funny fuel for the fire in Carl Reiner’s hilarious romp…All Of Me!

Roger Cobb is a conflicted man.  On the one hand his life as a successful attorney is going well, plus he has a nice house, a stunning girlfriend and a firm he works at where he’s about to become partner.  But on the other hand his love and passion to become a working jazz musician has been relegated to the back-burner leaving Roger somewhat dissatisfied.  In the end he decides to take up law full time and his first big case on the eve of being a partner involves the rich difficult client Edwina Cutwater.  Seems the unhappy Edwina thinks she’s found a way to transfer her soul into the body of another woman Terry and wants Roger to leave all her money to the young girl.  Convinced that Edwina is utterly insane, Roger refuses to be party to the whole odd debacle – until he accidentally gets hit with the bowl containing the soul of the recently passed Edwina and begins to hear a strange voice in his head…

There’s a definite story suspension of disbelief needed to get through the wild and wacky wares of Carl Reiner’s All Of Me, but once done there’s so much fun to be had.  Enlisting the likes of Steve Martin and Lily Tomlin to play his attached at the hip odd couple, Reiner gets some of the best riotous work out of two actors who already have a comedy resume to die for.  The sassy spirit of Tomlin as a spoiled rich bitch (anyone who has seen the behind the scenes footage of I Heart Huckabees knows Tomlin can do this character in her sleep!) with little life experience matched with the physical comedic prowess of Steve Martin playing both sides of a man and woman trapped in the same body is like teaming Laurel and Hardy.  Plus as a result of their on-screen brilliance all the far-fetched film moments like souls ending up in a buckets of water (don’t drink it dammit!) and kooky characters like Richard Libertini’s witless holy man are given a playful pass for being a part of the loony cinematic spectacle that makes one smile.

Martin is especially effective here – surprisingly both on high and low comedy levels.  His body work for laughs in All Of Me is some of his career best, but his character is more convincingly grounded and far from a hapless half-wits of previous outings like The Jerk and The Man With Two Brains.  As a prominent lawyer with smarts and sense, Martin’s high-brow gent then provides even more ample ammunition to go to wonderfully low-brow places (the scene in the bathroom is legendary!) with sheer screwy gusto – he steals most scenes for sure.

With Martin having already teamed up with Reiner for a number of fantastic films, All Of Me may not immediately come to mind when conjuring up their best comedic collaborations.  But even for a flick that seems to want to be a more grown up affair, there’s also plenty of raunchy and ruckus bawdy bits and legendary physical comedy abound thanks to the trio of Martin, Tomlin and Reiner that makes All Of Me a killer comedy worth coming back for.


I'm a passionate and opinionated film critic/movie journalist with over 20 years of experience in writing about film - now exclusively for WhySoBlu.com. Previous sites include nine years at Starpulse.com where I created Forgotten Friday Flick back in 2011, before that as Senior Entertainment Editor for The213.net and 213 Magazine, as well as a staff writer for JoBlo.com. My other love is doing cool events for the regular guy with my company Flicks For Fans alongside my friend, partner and Joblo.com writer James "Jimmy O" Oster. Check us out at www.Facebook.com/FlicksForFans.

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