The Corner

Blazing Saddles?

Mr. Brookhiser, there are many issues on which I would immediately defer to you. But “Blazing Saddles” is wretched. A movie that amused many a 13-year-old (I was one of them) now seems painfully dated and, worse, amateurish. Mel shoots many of the scenes with the visual panache of “The Carol Burnett Show.” The movie is interesting only as a historical signpost in the evolution of the word, “n***er.” Perhaps the most offensive word of our era, in Mel’s (and co-writer Richard Pryor’s) script, it is the punchline to about 25 jokes. (“Young Frankenstein,” meanwhile, holds up very well.)

Warren BellWarren Bell was nominated June 20, 2006, by President George W. Bush to be a member of the Board of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting for the remainder of a ...

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