I have not been shy about explaining how I was deprived growing up. Being sheltered from certain viewership helped me be the happy little naive kid that believed in Santa until he was 6 (it would’ve been longer but my cousin was an asshole and spilled the beans-not realizing everybody hates the pretentious kid that does that).
Knowing this, my parents allowed me to watch “The Naked Gun” with them.
I have to admit, during the first viewing, I did not get a lot of the jokes. I laughed at the funny faces and the slapstick the first time around.
Thank God for public schools.
It was there that I learned from my friends the adult, inside to a lot of the jokes that were in the movie. After talking to them at school, I tried to think of someone that I could watch it with that could explain things quickly along the way….had to be my cousins.
I sat down with them and turned it on. They had seen it once before, so they knew what was coming and could explain things to me.
I’ll admit…that one I kind of got the first time around; I just wanted clarification.
I feel like “The Naked Gun” was my first exposure to what could be considered an all out farce. I had not seen “Airplane!” or “Caddyshack” yet (I love both of those FYI) and my parents felt at 11 I still wasn’t ready for those movies.
They compromised with this one and I’m glad they did.
I remember afterwards thinking that my parents had great poker faces through some of the “raunchier” jokes. Normally my mom would give a judgmental, disgusted gasp through those parts. I think she knew those parts would go over my head so she didn’t want to give me any ideas and she hoped I wouldn’t ask. Now that I think about it, she probably didn’t have much time to enjoy a movie while she watched one with me. Hmmmm. Never thought about that. No wonder they didn’t like watching anything over “G” rated with us until we were teenagers.
At the end of the day, “The Naked Gun” introduced me to Leslie Nielsen. I rented as many movies as he had put out after I saw this. I liked his comedies. It was hard to take him seriously in the older dramas that he did when he was younger. He had found his niche and thankfully stuck to it.
I love his scenes with Priscilla Presley. Making light of soap opera melodrama is not an easy thing to pull off. Those two made it look so easy.
Nielsen to me was like Will Farrell. A little went a long way with him, and he could make you laugh just by entering a room and looking around.
I feel like I can mention some two word phrases–the second word being “scene”–and it will bring back moments from this film. I’ll start off with some easy ones:
the “queen scene”
the “umpire scene”
the “condom scene”
the “wheelchair scene”
the “clothesline scene” (Remember? The one on the beach?)
When I say these phrases, I smirk.
Again, thank God for public school. I might have never gotten the stuffed beaver joke.
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