The Video Vacuum (thevideovacuum) wrote,
The Video Vacuum
thevideovacuum

HAUNTED HONEYMOON (1986) ½ *

Gene Wilder (who also directed) stars as a radio actor who is about to be married to his co-star, Gilda Radner. He begins exhibiting bizarre ticks that his uncle (Paul L. Smith from Pieces) chalks up to wedding day jitters. He suggests Gene and Gilda go to his family's supposedly haunted mansion in order to “scare” him straight.

I love Gene Wilder as much as anyone could, but Haunted Honeymoon is a train wreck from the get-go. The gags are dire, tired, and uninspired. They revolve around actors in drag (the usually funny Dom DeLuise plays an old woman), fast motion scenes, and people screaming and/or shouting. The film is only 83 minutes long, but it feels much longer and is heavily padded with musical numbers and an extra-long (groan-inducing) ending.

Wilder’s direction is flat and his timing is off. Because of that, 99% of the jokes land with a thud. The only funny part is a variation on a gag from Young Frankenstein, which just goes to show that Mel Brooks’ touch is sorely missed. His performance is curiously low key too as he never once lapses into mania like the great Wilder characters. (He was probably too busy directing to focus on his performance.) He also has no chemistry with Gilda (in her last role) and the less said about DeLuise’s mugging the better.

The horror elements are also downright insulting too. The werewolf make-up is pretty cool, but the stupid twist ending pretty much negates everything remotely horrific about it. (Or does it?) Do yourself a favor and watch Young Frankenstein again.

Tags: comedy, h, horror, werewolf
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