JOHN BELUSHI, IN THE BEST OF SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE

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Saturday Night Live John Belushi There once was a comedian called Belushi. Who was a man who did not like to eat sushi. He liked drugs instead – which is why he ended up dead – and they played songs at his funeral by Du’ Busi. Want to know more? Then watch this 78-minute sketch compilation produced in 2004 (ok, 2005).  Guest starring: Dan Aykroyd, Elliott Gould, Bill Murray, Steve Martin, Chevy Chase, plus many, many more.


The Best of John Belushi


THE STORY
This feature length presentation showcases the erstwhile talents of the late great comedian, John Belushi, during his five year tenure on the American comedy show, ‘Saturday Night Live’. Within this program, there are skits such as:

  • Vito Corleone in Therapy – The Godfather illustrates how he feels about the death of his son, by sticking an orange in his mouth and fainting.
  • The Last Voyage of the Starship Enterprise – or also known as ‘NBC: Another cancellation’. 
  • Beethoven Composes 'My Girl' and 'What I Say' – Groovy man, SNIFF!
  • Samurai Night Fever / Samurai Delicatessen – Grrrr, mini-bla-bla-bla, CHOP!
  • Cheeseburger-Cheeseburger-Cheeseburger – No coke, only pepsi. No fries, only chip. No silence, only laugh.
  • Don't Look Back In Anger – An elderly John Belushi recollects why he is the only living member alive from the cast of Saturday Night Live.
  • Superhero Party – This skit asks the pertinent questions: Does Hulk mistakenly c*rp on Invisible Woman? Why does the Flash forget Ant-Man? And what happens when Superman finds out that Lois Lane once slept with the Hulk?
  • Also, ‘Joe Cocker’ performs "A Little Help from My Friends", and ‘The Blues Brothers’ performs ‘King Bee’ – buzz-buzz.

Now in addition to this, there is also: (1) John Belushi’s screen test for the show. (2) A interview that John and Dan made relating to their film, ‘Neighbours’. And (3) A retrospective account by family, friends, and colleges, on how John was as a man, as a performer, and as a talent that will surely be missed.




THE REVIEW:
Now I know that this may seem strange, but I first saw John Belushi whilst I was in a music lesson at school. My music teacher, Mr Preston, was a lover of the blues you see – and he wanted to share his admiration for this type of music, by playing to us – his class – a video, called the ‘Blues Brothers’. OK, I have to admit, I did not really understand why Mr Preston did this at the time – I just presumed that he did not want to teach us anything that particular day, so we got a ‘free lesson’ instead, and just enjoyed a ‘funny movie’.

Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi
Boy. Was I wrong. Not in a bad way of course. I liked the movie. Yet in addition to this, I was introduced to two people who would change my life forever more ‘The Blues Brothers’.

“And why was that?” you may ask yourself.  "Just how did the Blues Brothers change my life?". Well, I had a slight eye problem that affected my appearance, because – on occasion – I had to wear dark glasses and a hat, just to shield my sensitive eyes from the sun (still do in fact). Therefore, when I saw Dan and John look the same as I did -- in a manner of speaking -- I thought to myself ‘I could be cool, just like them’. Kind of.

OK, I know that this may sound strange also, but if truth be told, that moment gave me hope where my appearance was concerned – and the rest is now history.
 

John Belushi Blues Brothers


Oh! And whilst I am on the topic of ‘history’ (what a nice segway), I can now tell you about my views on this feature ‘John Belushi: The Best of Saturday Night Live’.

So, was it any good?

YES!

And why was it good?

BECAUSE I SAID SO – NOW P*SS OFF!

Just kidding. This program has some very nice sketches in it, all of which brought a smile to my face all the way through. The Samurai – Brando – Cheeseburger-Cheeseburger-Cheeseburger – Joe Cocker – and many, many more – all of them just illustrating the talent that John, plus his co-stars, had, which made them the legends they are. Moreover, I really liked the supplementary material too – as they all gave this feature a more pertinent and revealing tone to it, while at the same time recounting the rise and the fall of this amazing Armenian anarchist.


John Belushi in Animal House


John Belushi Mug Shot
My own personal favourite segments to ‘John Belushi: The Best of Saturday Night Live’, are as follows. Initially, I loved how ‘Cheeseburger-Cheeseburger-Cheeseburger’ had no logic to it at all – yet simultaneously was just funny to watch. Next, was ‘Don't Look Back in Anger’ – because it was almost a perverse mirror image of how John’s life didn’t turn out – he died, and the rest didn’t. After that, I loved the ‘Superhero Party’ – well – I am a comic book fan, huh? And finally, I enjoyed the interview section – as all the interviews, even though tinged with sentimentality, did come across as being honest and frank, without any grandstanding conveyed.

However, if I did have a slight niggle with this program – and I do mean slight – it would have to be that I would have liked to have seen the interviews and supplementary sections amalgamated within the skit part of this show. That way, a story could have been told – aided by additional commentary – thus making this feature fuller in content.

Granted, I could just be talking sh*t – as I have been know to do that at times – and my presumptions could just be that – presumptions. Still, apart from this minuscule gripe, overall, this skit compilation was a great one to watch. It was funny – it was insightful – it was heartfelt – and it was just, SMASHING!

So if you are a fan of John Belushi? What are you waiting for? Cheeseburger-Cheeseburger-Cheeseburger?


     


THE RATING: A