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YMMV / The Producers

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  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Many people who have actually worked in theater, including on This Very Wiki, have pointed out that Roger isn't that bad as a director. If you have extensive theater experience, you know that if the biggest issue with the director is that he's over-the-top, campy, and tacky, you've lucked out — those are issues that can still be worked with. He also appears to treat his crew and cast pretty well, and simply does not give up. It's understandable to think that he'd be wholly unsuited for "Springtime For Hitler," but of all the directors one could end up working with, Roger is far from the worst.
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  • Crosses the Line Twice: Basically the point from beginning to end. It's more like "crosses the line infinity times." Springtime For Hitler is this in universe as well, much to Leo's and Max's dismay. In Mel Brooks' words himself, the film is "rising below vulgarity."
  • Ear Worm: Springtime for Hitler.
  • Ending Fatigue: In the remake, everything after Springtime for Hitler becomes a hit, especially for those who grew up with the original film.
    Roger Ebert: The only flaw was one of excess; in a scene set in prison toward the end, he has Lane recap virtually the entire movie as a one-man repertory troupe, and if it goes on too long, well of course it does. Moderation is not a quality possessed by anyone associated with a movie that advises us, "If you've got it, baby — flaunt it!"
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Kenneth Mars steals every scene he's in as Franz Liebkind.
  • Genius Bonus
    • Max's referring to Leo as "Prince Myshkin". Leo being named after the protagonist in Ulysses, and the film's action taking place on Bloomsday.
    • One of the plays Max reads in the original:
    • Franz being both upset and confused that anyone would laugh at his beloved Furrër isn't just personal for him. Nazi German was aware of the inherent absurdity of Hiter's fascist propaganda and forbade German journalists from writing anything humorous or satirical about it under the correct assumption that it would devalue his influence, as was Brooks' point in satirizing it.
    • One that only occurred due to the passage of time: younger viewers likely don't get that Carmen Giya is a pun on a sports car called the Volkswagen Karmann Ghia.
    • Leo Bloom's name is a tribute to Leopold Bloom, the protagonist of James Joyce's Ulysses. Like his namesake, Leo is an extremely mild-mannered, submissive Nice Guy in a respectable middle-class job, given to occasional flights of fancy. Leopold Bloom is also one of the most famous Jewish characters in the history of literature, adding another layer to Leo Bloom mercilessly mocking Hitler.
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  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: In Sweden, the film was titled Det våras för Hitler, literally "Springtime for Hitler". Subsequent Brooks films are titled "Springtime for..."; this marketing stunt created a continuity, which made the films popular in Sweden.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • John Barrowman's appearance in the 2005 movie makes more than a passing resemblance to a certain albino Prussian. Or a blond German sans glasses.
    • Bialystock considers a musical based on Kafka's The Metamorphosis, but considers it to be "too good". The task of creating a rock opera based on the Metamorphosis is eventually taken up by aspiring rocker Duane from Home Movies.
    • "Think of... The TONY!!" This gets Roger to have his "stroke of genius." And in a meta sense, in 2001 it did just that, sweeping all the categories.
    • In the musical, Max tells the old ladies to make out the checks to "Cash," the name of his new play. One of them tells Max that that's a funny name for a play, to which Max replies "So is The Iceman Cometh." Over a decade later, Nathan Lane (Max) would star in a production of this funnily-named play.
    • In one scene, Roger dresses as "the Grand Duchess Anastasia." Now, what musical opened on the same street many years later?
  • Ho Yay: If there were any more sexual subtext between Bialystock and Bloom, they might as well be making out on-screen. In the original movie, they do actually kiss, albeit on the cheek.
    • According to Gene Wilder, the very first thing Zero Mostel did when they met was drag him into the room by the arm and kiss him on the mouth. Make of that what you will.
    • In the Jimmy Kimmel Live! parody (An Anachronism Stew sketch lampooning Donald Trump, with Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick reprising their roles), Max, now a political consultant hearing from Leo that the two can make more money from a losing candidate than a winning one, takes Leo in his arms, Gone with the Wind poster style. Leo even says, "Max, don't..."
    • The author of Springtime For Hitler seems a little too fond of the Fuhrer.
    • In the musical version, "'Til Him", the song that Leo and Max sing in the trial scene, is blatantly a love song pretending to be a friendship song, and it ends with Max snuggling into Leo's chest in a way that goes way beyond friendship.
  • Hype Backlash: Considering that the musical won every single one of the twelve Tonys it was nominated for and ran for close to a decade, this is to be expected.
  • It Was His Sled: Pretty much everyone knows how this one turns out; hell, we even named a trope after it.
  • Memetic Mutation: "That's our Hitler!" to the point where it was used on an episode of House.
    • From the original: "Will the dancing Hitlers please wait in the wings? We are only seeing singing Hitlers!"
    • "That's it baby! When you got it, FLAUNT IT! FLAUNT IT!"
    • "I'm in pain! I'm in pain and I'm wet and I'M STILL HYSTERICAL!"
    • "I fell on my keys."
    • "Don't be stupid, be a smarty, come and join the Nazi party!"
      • Especially because in both movies and the show (including touring productions), the line is always a recording of Mel Brooks' voice.
    • "You are the audience member! I am the author! I outrank you!"
    • The infamous "Blue Blanket" scene, especially the Gene Wilder version.
  • Mexicans Love Speedy Gonzales: Even though Roger and Carmen embody just about every stereotype about homosexuals, the characters are beloved by many gay people for their hilarious banter and heartwarming relationship.
  • One-Scene Wonder
    • In the original film, William Hickey as the drunken bar patron, and Estelle Winwood as "Hold Me Touch Me."
    • In the 2005 version, Jon Lovitz as Mr. Marks.
  • Padding: As Mel himself later agreed, the movie is basically over after the Springtime For Hitler scene. The theater being blown up is just an excuse to land Max, Franz and Leo in jail at the end for the inevitable punchline. The musical amends this by having Leo abandon Max as he's taken to jail, thus giving them more personal conflict, and making the climax in the courthouse more satisfying.
  • Retroactive Recognition:
    • In the original film, "Eva Braun" is played by Renee Taylor, who's Fran Fine's mother in The Nanny.
    • And Goering is Barney Martin, then fresh off his 20 year career with the NYPD and a few decades away from playing Morty Seinfeld.
    • And that's legendary character actor William Hickey, better known to young tropers as the voice of Dr. Finklestein, playing the drunk.
    • In the 2005 film, John Barrowman plays the male lead singer in the opening number of Springtime For Hitler, in the same year as the first Doctor Who episode in which he played Jack Harkness, the role that would win him fame. He is immediately recognisable despite having blond hair in the part.
  • Slow-Paced Beginning: The film begins with an unnecessarily long sequence where Bloom engages in a lengthy conversation with Bialystock in order to illustrate how slimy Bialystock is followed by an equally lengthy exposition about how the Broadway scam is supposed to work. On the other hand, it has some of the best lines of the movie ("My blanket! MY BABY BLUE BLANKET!").
  • So Bad, It's Good: Springtime For Hitler's opening musical number. Passes through into So Bad It's Sidesplitting.
    • And lamented about in "Where Did We Go Right?" as Max and Leo tried to imagine how it became that way.
  • Special Effects Failure: A Black Comedy made for a little under a million dollars isn't going to buy you much in the way of visual effects in 1968. As such, the theater "blowing up" is clearly just a photograph with some very cartoonie-looking colored paper cutouts pasted into the windows.
  • Tear Jerker: "Til Him."
    • To a lesser extent, Gene Wilder's original ending speech. Sure, there are a couple comedic zings, but the innocence and heartfelt friendship that Leo has for Max are made evident at their fullest in this scene.
      Leo Bloom: No one ever called me Leo before! I mean, I know it's not a big legal point, but... even in kindergarten they used to call me Bloom. I never sang a song before. I mean with someone else, I never sang a song with someone else before. This man... this man... this is a wonderful man. He made me what I am today... he did.
  • Threesome Subtext: One could very easily make a case for Bloom/Ulla/Bialystock. Bialystock and Bloom have Ho Yay by the bucketloads (hell, the main love story of the show is their friendship), Ulla and Bloom hook up, Ulla's clearly very fond of both of them, even if only as a friend in Max's case, and it's pretty clear Bialystock hired Ulla because he was hoping to get with her before Bloom beat him to it. The only real catch would be Leo — neither Max nor Ulla seem like they'd mind sharing. In fact, they both get a line that lends credence to the shipping.
    Ulla: (to Leo) I know we both love Max...
    Max: (to Leo after seeing him kissing Ulla) Here I thought we were partners, sharing everything fifty/fifty.
  • True Art Is Incomprehensible: The "song" LSD "performs" during his Hitler-audition.
  • Values Resonance: In light of the US's political climate in 2016-17 and Richard Spencer leading a group of "alt-right" (read: Nazis who don't want to be called Nazis) followers to say "Heil Trump," this musical becomes much more relevant. People are taking up the call to arms to, once again, make Nazis look ridiculous.
  • Vindicated by History: The film was a flop upon release, with both critics and audiences being caught off guard by Mel Brooks' particular brand of sledgehammer satire. Then it won the Best Screenplay Oscar, and has since become revered as a must-see comedy classic.
  • The Woobie: Leo Bloom is a meek accountant who is nearly driven to a nervous breakdown each time his new partner tries to rope him into his scheme. While Gene Wilder makes him sympathetic, it's only until the Broadway play when it is explicitly stated that he has low self-esteem and feels that he never amounted to anything, and only makes it more heartwarming when he loosens up later on. "I Want To Be A Producer" ends with a truly awesome and heartwarming note!


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