The King of Comedy (1983)

2007 #121
Martin Scorsese | 104 mins | TV | PG / PG

The King of ComedyUnderrated black comedy from the prolific partnership of director Scorsese and star De Niro.

De Niro gives an excellent performance as an obsessive wannabe comedian, stalking the host of a popular talk show in his desperation for a guest spot. The depth of his delusion is both hilariously funny and deeply unsettling; subtly woven between the laughs is the impression that this sort of behaviour must be all-too-real among those over-obsessed with celebrity culture. Jerry Lewis and Sandra Bernhard are also worthy of note in their supporting roles.

Rarely mentioned when it comes to discussions of Scorsese’s work, I think it’s the best film I’ve seen from him. (This closing comment is subject to the fact that I’ve only seen The Departed, The Aviator, Gangs of New York and Bringing Out the Dead, a list clearly missing most of his highly-praised work.)

5 out of 5

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