मेघदूत: "नीचैर्गच्छत्युपरि च दशा चक्रनेमिक्रमेण"

G C Lichtenberg: “It is as if our languages were confounded: when we want a thought, they bring us a word; when we ask for a word, they give us a dash; and when we expect a dash, there comes a piece of bawdy.”

Friedrich Nietzsche: “Everybody wants the same, everybody is the same: whoever feels different goes voluntarily into a madhouse.”

Martin Amis: “Gogol is funny, Tolstoy in his merciless clarity is funny, and Dostoyevsky, funnily enough, is very funny indeed; moreover, the final generation of Russian literature, before it was destroyed by Lenin and Stalin, remained emphatically comic — Bunin, Bely, Bulgakov, Zamyatin. The novel is comic because life is comic (until the inevitable tragedy of the fifth act);...”

Werner Herzog: “We are surrounded by worn-out, banal, useless and exhausted images, limping and dragging themselves behind the rest of our cultural evolution.”

John Gray: "Unlike Schopenhauer, who lamented the human lot, Leopardi believed that the best response to life is laughter. What fascinated Schopenhauer, along with many later writers, was Leopardi’s insistence that illusion is necessary to human happiness."

Justin E.H. Smith: “One should of course take seriously serious efforts to improve society. But when these efforts fail, in whole or in part, it is only humor that offers redemption. So far, human expectations have always been strained, and have always come, give or take a bit, to nothing. In this respect reality itself has the form of a joke, and humor the force of truth.”

विलास सारंग: "… . . 1000 नंतर ज्या प्रकारची संस्कृती रुढ झाली , त्यामध्ये साधारणत्व विश्वात्मकता हे गुण प्राय: लुप्त झाले...आपली संस्कृती अकाली विश्वात्मक साधारणतेला मुकली आहे."

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Taking a Deep Breath of Heaven Each Time: Watching Young Frankenstein

#GeneWilder #GeneWilder1stDeathAnniversary #YoungFrankenstein #transylvaniastation

Today August 29 2017 is first death anniversary of Gene Wilder, a screenplay writer and hero  of 'Young Frankenstein', 1974, one of the greatest screen comedies ever.
 

Paraphrasing the Mr. Wilder, any time I watch Mel Brooks' movie, I take a deep breath of heaven!

"...We never improvised dialogue on the set. Physical actions, yes, but not dialogue. One day we were filming the scene of Madeline Kahn’s arrival at the Frankenstein castle. She was wearing a fox stole and a big turban on her head. The scene seemed flat to all of us. After we tried several things, Mel suddenly said, “Marty! When Gene says, ‘Eyegore, help me with these bags,’ you say, ‘Soitanly—you take da blonde, I’ll take da one in da toiben.’ ”
We all laughed and started the scene again, on film. I said my line, Marty said his, and then Marty—in one of his impulsive inspirations—took a huge bite out of the tail of the fox fur that Madeline was wearing around her neck, but the tail came off in his mouth. We all had to go on playing the rest of the scene while we looked at Marty with a tail in his mouth. Out of such lunacy great comedy is born.
When we were filming the Transylvania Station scene, in which “Eyegore” leads me off of the platform to the hay wagon, Mel suddenly said, “Marty, bend over as you walk away with your little cane and tell Gene, ‘Walk this way.’ ”

“What does that mean?” I asked.

“I’ll tell you later.”

We did the scene. Everyone laughed, but I still didn’t know what it meant. After we finished the scene, Mel said, “Man walks into a drugstore and says to the pharmacist, ‘I got terrible hemorrhoids—have you got some talcum powder?’ Pharmacist says, ‘Yes sir—walk this way.’ Man says, ‘If I could walk that way, I wouldn’t need the talcum powder.’ ”

I hate to think what might have happened if we had been forced to make the film at Columbia. As it turned out, Alan Ladd, Jr., asked Mel and me to sign five-year contracts at Fox.

Making Young Frankenstein was the happiest I’d ever been on a film. Madeline Kahn (1942-1999), Peter Boyle (1935-2006),  Marty Feldman, Teri Garr, Cloris Leachman, Kenny Mars . . . and Mel directing. It was like taking a small breath of Heaven each day.

I’m always lonely when I’m on my own—a leftover I think from the Demon, who always struck when I was alone—but towards the end of filming I realized that I was going to be lonelier when I returned to my home and family. On the last day of filming, during our lunch hour, I was sitting in the Frankenstein bedroom set, staring at the fake fireplace. Mel wandered in and saw me.
“What’s the matter? Why so sad?” he asked.
“I don’t want to leave Transylvania.”...”

('Kiss Me Like A Stranger: My Search for Love and Art', 2005 by Gene Wilder)

'Walking This Way'

Gene Wilder (1933-2016) as Dr. Frederick Frankenstein and Marty Feldman (1934-1982) as Igor at Transylvania station

Castle knockers [ A device (usually metal and ornamental) attached by a hinge to a door]



"Freddy: What knockers.

Inga: Oh, thank you, Doctor."
 
Freddy admires the knockers on the castle door,  with Teri Garr as Inga!

Pictures courtesy: 20th Century Fox

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