What a wonderfully inventive, wild comedy H.C. Potter's Hellzapoppin is. From the opening sequence, which is one of the wildest, insane openings of any old Hollywood film I can think, excluding 'Crime Without Passion', I knew I was in for a real treat. The film revolves around Olsen and Chic, the creators of the ultra-successful Broadway play, Hellzapoppin, who have been brought to Hollywood to make the film adaptation. Of course, the studio insists on changing everything, and madness ensues. The plot really doesn't matter that much, as the two men venture into the actual movie and cause all sorts of chaos. That being said, this is without a doubt the best "movie in a movie" type of film that I have ever seen. Its absolutely bursting at the seems with gags and it's anarchic style mixed with surrealism is just so much fun. What's that about breaking the fourth wall? Well, this film never even establishes it to begin with. Obviously there is a slight commentary on the Studios in this, but really it's just a chaotic slapstick film which I imagine is just as fun now as it was on it's initially release. If I had to criticize anything about this film it would be that it's so much fun to the point where I found the musical numbers were getting in the way of the chaos and energy. My favorite segments had to be the part where the two men accidentally find themselves in the middle of a Western, or the part where they tell the kid in the audience who smells to go home. Hellzpoppin has got to be one of the most fun and self-aware experiences cinema has ever produced.
Love of all things cinema brought me here.