Silent Movie (1976) - Rotten Tomatoes

Silent Movie (1976)




Critic Consensus: Stylistically audacious and infectiously nostalgic for the dawn of cinema, Silent Movie is another comedic triumph for Mel Brooks... now shush.

Movie Info

A hasbeen comedy director struggles to recruit a group of big Hollywood stars to take part in his comeback project, a modern-day silent movie. Mel Brooks' cameo-filled comedy pays loving tribute to the early days of screen comedy through a succession of (almost) entirely silent slapstick sequences.


Mel Brooks
as Mel Funn
Marty Feldman
as Marty Eggs
Dom DeLuise
as Dom Bell
Bernadette Peters
as Vilma Kaplan
Sid Caesar
as Studio Chief
Ron Carey
as Devour
Carol DeLuise
as Pregnant Lady
Liam Dunn
as Newsvendor
Fritz Feld
as Maitre d'
Chuck McCann
as Studio Gate Guard
Valerie Curtin
as Intensive Care Nurse
Yvonne Wilder
as Studio Chief's Secretary
Arnold Soboloff
as Acupuncture Man
Patrick Campbell
as Hotel Bellhop
Harry Ritz
as Man in Tailor Shop
Charlie Callas
as Blind Man
Henny Youngman
as Fly in Soup Man
Eddie Ryder
as British Officer
Al Hopson
as Executive
Rudy De Luca
as Executive
Barry Levinson
as Executive
Howard Hesseman
as Executive
Lee Delano
as Executive
Jack Riley
as Executive
Inga Neilsen
as Beautiful Blonde
Sivi Aberg
as Beautiful Blonde
Erica Hagen
as Beautiful Blonde
Robert Lussier
as Projectionist
Paul Newman
as Himself
James Caan
as Himself
View All

Critic Reviews for Silent Movie

All Critics (25) | Top Critics (1)

Brooks has taken a considerably stylistic risk and pulled it off triumphantly.

October 23, 2004 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…

Silent Movie has more ups than downs and is a guaranteed sidesplitting, lunatic look at movie studios and the behind-the-scenes personnel that help keep the reels rolling.

May 26, 2020 | Full Review…

There are so many gags, so many hilarious moments, that halfway through the brisk ninety-minute film, the audience is tempted to cry uncle.

October 30, 2019 | Full Review…

Basically it has no plot skeleton, it is very repetitive and when a very annoying character appears, in charge of Bernardette Peters, the film becomes quite boring. [Full Review in Spanish]

September 3, 2019 | Full Review…

... fun from beginning to end... [Full review in Spanish]

February 6, 2018 | Full Review…

What disconcerts me about Mr Brooks is his obviousness, the lack of any true surprise in his gags.

June 16, 2015 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Silent Movie


In the 1970's Mel Brooks was the cinematic comedy genius. He created the most celebrated western parody with Blazing Saddles, a wager that paid off. During that same glorious year of 1974 he delivered Young Frankenstein, a tongue in cheek look at the Universal monster movies that he also released in black and white. Brooks wasn't afraid to go way outside the box to deliver his films, which brings us to his 1976 film Silent Movie. Silent Movie follows the antics of Mel Funn (Brooks), Marty Eggs (Marty Feldman), and Dom Bell (Dom DeLuise). The trio has a plan to make a silent movie, forty years after talkies took over the cinema. The main focus of the film is to get big stars for their trip into nostalgia, such as Burt Reynolds, James Caan, Liza Minelli, and Anne Bancroft as a way to produce a hit for the studio that is on the edge of being consumed by a conglomerate. Hilarity ensues. Oh, did I mention that the film is also silent? Yes, Mel Brooks accomplished a silent film in 1976. The man could do no wrong. The first thing we need to get out of the way is that when compared to Blazing Saddles and Young Frankenstein, Silent Movie is the weakest of the three. So if you're expecting an equivalent, don't do it. Now taken on its own this is a pretty funny film. Mel Brooks delivers a film with slap stick and uses silent film conventions in the modern era. The film works, but it's doesn't quite achieve the greatness of Brooks work two years prior, mainly due to the limitations of making a silent film. The thing I ask myself is that after creating two of the greatest comedies of our time did Mel Brooks submit this film as a joke because the studios thought he could do no wrong? I can just imagine him being asked what his next film would be and him saying, tongue in cheek, that he was going to do a silent movie and the studio went wild over the idea. Even though set with an early 20th century motif, it does comment on the film industry of the 1970's, mainly in the fall of the studios to the conglomerates that gobbled them up. The studio system was dead and this film partially examines its obituary. Silent Movie isn't Brooks best work, but it is a funny film that is lulled by its main premise. It's still enjoyable after 40 years and spotlights the audacity of the film industry's greatest comedic genius.

Chris Garman
Chris Garman

Super Reviewer

Clever idea for a 15 minute short film is dragged out to a full-length feature. Not only does the gimmick get old fast, but the non-silent era stars don't have the chops to pull off expressive silent acting. I almost never laughed. At least the theater will be quiet enough for you to fall asleep during this dud.

Christian C
Christian C

Super Reviewer


In case you're wonder, yes this movie is silent! Brooks brings us nostalgia of the old silents, and it is hilarious. If you like his films, I highly recommend seeing this one too.

Aj V
Aj V

Super Reviewer

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