YMMV / Monty Python's Life of Brian


  • Awesome Music:
    • Let's face it, do you know anyone who doesn't know "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life"? Even the survivors of two British ships (HMS Sheffield and HMS Coventry) sunk during the Falklands War sang it while waiting to be rescued.
    • Often overlooked but still awesome is "Brian", the credits song, which grants a massive booming orchestra and an incredibly talented singer to some of the silliest Coming of Age lyrics you've ever heard. "And he started to shave / And have one off the wrist / And want to meet girls / And go out and get pissed..."
    • After the success of Spamalot, Eric Idle wrote a comic oratorio based on Life of Brian called "(Not the) Messiah," which had dozens of new songs, a full orchestra, and is written in the style of Handel's Messiah. It may in fact be the only comic oratorio in existence.
  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment: For a Monty Python film, Life of Brian is very reasonably paced and well-grounded — save for the scene where Brian falls off of a tower to be saved by a passing flying saucer, taken into space to pass through an intergalactic war, and then brought back to Earth in a crash of alien metal — right at the foot of the same tower. The scene was added merely to give Brian a way to escape the tower.
  • Broken Base:
    • People are split as to whether this or Monty Python and the Holy Grail is the better movie (most would agree that Meaning of Life falls just shy of that honor). All three are considered good movies,.
    • This is a film that still remains controversial. Some people assume it's a parody of Jesus, who is actually just a very minor character in the film (and himself played completely straight). Others claim the film mocks Christianity, while it can also be interpreted as mocking religion or blindly fanatical followers in general, for that matter. In a sense it also spoofs the typically heavy handed and deadly serious Bible epics. Some very devout religious people condemn the film for being blasphemous without having seen it. Some religious people who did watch it act as if this movie doesn't mock Jesus, Christianity or religion at all, which is again not totally true either. There are several very outrageous heretical scenes that could easily offend people who take their faith too seriously, but religious people with a sense of humour can enjoy the film just fine. The movie is also more than just a shocking comedy. It raises excellent points about blindly following leaders, misinterpreting so-called signs and messages and not thinking for yourself.
  • Crowning Moment of Awesome: A meta example. When several members of the various clergies in Britain started targeting the film, John Cleese and Michael Palin went on air to be interviewed and to debate regarding the controversy. When two smug priests begin bashing the film over things that don't happen, both Cleese and Palin tear into them. This is particularly notable in that Palin is doing the verbal smackdown, as Cleese noted years later.
  • Crowning Moment of Heartwarming: Another meta-example. The fact that ex-Beatle George Harrison came forth after the studio canned the film, set up an entire production company, paid the Pythons a few million pounds, and let them do whatever they wanted. Why? Because he was a huge Python fan and wanted to see their next movie.
  • Ear Worm: Always look on the bright side of life...
  • Funny Moment: What's so funny about "Biggus Dickus?" I have a vewy gweat fwiend in Wome called "Biggus Dickus."
  • Genius Bonus:
    • Some very early anti-Christian polemics in the Roman Empire alleged that Jesus was the bastard son of Mary and a Roman soldier named Pantera (no, not that one), similar to Brian's paternity.
    • In the scene where a Roman guard corrects the grammar on a vandal's graffiti, the Latin grammar is entirely accurate.
    • The Judean Peoples' Front's suicide squad recalls the Jewish rebels at Masada who collectively committed suicide rather than be captured by the Romans during the Jewish Revolt.
    • "Blessed are the Cheesemakers." There was an area of Jerusalem at the time the movie takes place, whose name translates to "The Valley of the Cheesemakers."
  • Hilarious in Hindsight
  • Strangled by the Red String: Brian and Judith end up in bed together despite having had very little interaction beforehand. Admittedly, the film wasn't trying to be a romantic drama.
  • Tear Jerker: The bits between the botched (or successful, depending on your outlook) Suicide Squad raid and the finale. Brian is being crucified, and not even those he loves are going to help him. His lover takes his "martyrdom" with pride, and his mother berates him and leaves him for dead.
  • Values Dissonance: Zig-zagged with Stan/Loretta, who is heavily implied to be a Transsexual. She isn't necessarily a negative or stereotypical depiction of a transwoman, and her friends accept her despite their confusion, not to mention her constant interjection of female pronouns into her friend's speech is now a common tactic of people who are pro-trans who want those less enlightened to pay more attention to which pronouns they use. However, the concept of a man wanting to be a woman, and her lament about not being able to have children, is still played as a joke.
  • The Woobie: Brian, he never gets a break long enough, and every one of his friends leave him for dead.
  • Woolseyism:
    • The Swedish sub somehow manages to make the "Romanes eunt domum" scene even funnier by having the Centurion translate Brian's original botched Latin as "The Romanians go to the house note ".
    • In the same translation, the cheeky guy who makes fun of Brian's big nose asks: "Where are you from? Nosareth?"
    • In Spain, Biggus Dickus is called "Pijus Magnificus" (Magnificentus Preppus).


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