Call him Mr. Lamb Fries!
TODAY'S RETRO-REVIEW: 1988's "Funny Farm," starring Chevy Chase and Madolyn Smith Osborne. It was directed by George Roy Hill, best known for his work on "The Sting," "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" and "Slap Shot."
THE PLOT: Chase and Osborne play "Andy and Elizabeth Farmer," two city-dwellers who chuck their careers to move to Vermont so that Andy can write his great American novel. When reality doesn't meet their dream of a country home, they try to sell it -- but they need help. So they offer the town's residents money so that they'll act normal -- at least until a new buyer can be found.
MAYBE YOU REMEMBER: Bill Fagerbakke, of TV's "Coach" and "Spongebob Squarepants," plays a minor bit as one of the Criterion brothers.
SURELY YOU CAN'T FORGET: The insanely drunk postal worker who flings the Farmers' mail out his window as he races by. The part was played by Kevin Conway ("Oz" and "The Bronx is Burning"), who was uncredited in the role.
WHAT THE CRITICS SAID: "At the end, I had a goofy grin on my face because the movie had won me over so completely I was even willing to accept the final gag about the two ducks." -- Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times.
WHY WE LOVE IT TOO: Chevy's "bemused wonder," as Ebert puts it, is contagious. And so we gladly embrace the drunken postman, the fried lamb testicles and the pet -- "Yellow Dog" -- so sedentary that Chevy has to remove his smoking tail from the fireplace.
TOP FIVE LINES FROM FUNNY FARM:
5. "We came to Redbud filled with hopes and dreams of a better life. And basically, we've seen those hopes and dreams crushed and battered before our very eyes."
4. "As a novelist, I turned out to be a pretty good sportswriter."
3. "Cue the deer!"
2. "Being a fake is what I do best."
1. "Call me Mr. Lamb Fries!"