By: Mel Brooks
Mel Brooks, babbbaayyyyy.
I grew up watching Robin Hood: Men in Tights on repeat, to the point that even though I haven't seen the film in some 20 years, when I was reading the lyrics to the theme of it in Mel's book, I heard the tune in my head and pictured the chorus line choreography from the movie, like I was watching it again as a wee lad.
I haven't seen Mr. Brooks' entire filmography, which is slightly shameful but also gives me something to look forward to. I didn't know much about him before reading this book; that he served in WWII, that he wrote for Sid Caesar, how he met Carl Reiner, or how he won over Anne Bancroft. It was easy reading and fun, it sounds like Mel Brooks' voice the entire time, which is that funny old NY jewish guy that makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside.
The book gives background on his early life with his family and then entering the war, and then each chapter is broken out roughly per project he worked on through his life. I still haven't seen The Producers so I can't say if I liked it or not, but after reading this book it really feels like the musical version was really his magnum opus, the culmination of the entirety of his life's work, which funnily enough was a reflection of the first film he made, The Producers only with 30+ years of refinement and mastery to enhance the work into what may or may not be the best musical comedy ever created.
I'm glad I read this book, and I have lots of movies to watch.