The Disorderly Orderly (S) (Widescreen) (Jerry Lewis Widescreen Collection) product details page

The Disorderly Orderly (S) (Widescreen) (Jerry Lewis Widescreen Collection)

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This hilarious Jerry Lewis vehicle is one of his all-time classics. The major reason for this is the skillful work of writer/director Frank Tashlin: no other filmmaker could use the many gifts of Lewis as skillfully as he could. Tashlin's script plays not only to Lewis's skills for mugging and slapstick but also weaves in a surprising amount of drama that brings out his underrated gift for pathos. Lewis rises to the challenge of this script with a performance that covers the gamut from rubber-faced antics to surprisingly understated expressions of adult emotion, often within the same scene. Tashlin also gets great performances from the rest of the cast: Susan Oliver delivers a genuinely intense and dramatic performance as the troubled girl the hero pines for, Kathleen Freeman makes an excellent comedic foil for Lewis as his constantly agitated supervisor and Everett Sloane is amusing as a sleazy administrator who gets his comeuppance. Best of all, Tashlin's direction of The Disorderly Orderly is truly inventive: he gives the film a snazzy pace and a bright, "pop" color scheme that suits the manic approach of its star. More importantly, he uses the language of film to choreograph the gags in unique, visually expressive ways. Highlights in that area include a silent argument played out with subtitles and the masterfully choreographed finale, which orchestrates a chase between two ambulances in a manner that is thrilling and hilariously destructive all at once. In short, anyone with an interest in Jerry Lewis's work needs to see The Disorderly Orderly. Donald Guarisco, All Movie Guide