- Rated: G
- Run Time: 1 hours, 33 minutes
- Video: Color
- Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
- Released: September 5, 2006
- Originally Released: 1970
- Label: 20th Century Fox
- Packaging: Keep Case
- Aspect Ratio: Full Frame - 1.33
- Aspect Ratio: Widescreen - 1.85
Performers, Cast and Crew:
Description by OLDIES.com:
Although the plot of The Twelve Chairs is wild enough to have been created by Mel Brooks, it's actually based on a Russian story written by two Soviet journalists Ilya Ilf and Yevgeni Petrov, in the 1920s. Set in Russia in 1927, this much-loved, hilarious Mel Brooks comedy classic is the tale of a former aristocrat (Ron Moody) who is now a Russian clerk under the new Soviet regime. When he learns that his dying mother-in-law sewed a fortune of family jewels into one of the twelve dining room chairs, he sets off across Russia to find it - with an opportunist (Frank Langella), a priest (Dom DeLuise), and his former servant (Mel Brooks) all in equal pursuit.
A stylish, frantic fable and one of director Mel Brooks's earliest films, THE TWELVE CHAIRS is a madcap mystery set in revolutionary Russia. An aging ex-nobleman of the czarist regime, Count I.M. Vorobyaninov (Ron Moody), has finally adjusted to life under the commissars in Russia. But when both he and the local priest, Father Fyodor (Dom DeLuise), find out that a fortune in the count's family jewels is hidden in a chair's upholstery--the chair being one of a set of 12--they each separately return to Moscow to find the hidden fortune. Along the way, the count enlists the aid of a thief (Frank Langella) in the hilarious treasure hunt. Closer in style to THE PRODUCERS than many of Brooks' other spoofs, THE TWELVE CHAIRS is an overlooked comedy gem. DeLuise gives an uproarious performance in which he employs slapstick and physical humor liberally. There is a human side to this film, too, just as there was with Zero Mostel's character, Max Bialystock, in THE PRODUCERS, in the form of Moody's Vorobyaninov. Based on a Russian novel, THE TWELVE CHAIRS marries neurotic humor and cultural dilemmas in the same vein as
classic Woody Allen films in later years.
A once-wealthy man discovers that his late mother-in-law stashed all her family jewels inside one of the 12 chairs from her dining room set. Resentful of having to work as a clerk after being impoverished by the Russian Revolution, Vorobyaninov sets out to reclaim his family fortune and his social standing. Unfortunately, he's not the only one on the lookout for the precious gems: Both the priest who hears the mother-in-law's confession and an opportunistic adventurer want their share of the booty. What follows is a hilarious search for the dining room set, which has been sold piecemeal and scattered all over the country.
Based On A Novel |
- Theatrical release: October 28, 1970
- The production was filmed in Dubrovnik and features panoramas of the Dalmatian coast.
- Ron Moody won acclaim for his performance as Fagin in both the stage and screen versions of OLIVER!