Here’s a strange one from the Vault of Obscurity, and while it is obscure it does hold a place in the most important comedies of all time, because it is the first ever movie that comedy all star Chevy Chase was in. I didn’t really know what to expect going into this movie, so I went in with no expectations and was not surprised or wowed.
I can’t tell you what the story of The Groove Tube is because, well, there is no story. What we have here is a series of satirical, absurd, often offensive sketches that mock television and the time period of the mid-70s in general. In one sketch we have a clown who reads erotic novels to children during a segment of his television show to a fake news show that spawned a famous line from SNL, “Good night, and have a pleasant tomorrow.”
If I went into this movie with high expectations, I would have been terribly disappointed. The really good laughs came too few and far between, which is a shame because when a joke was effective, they were really funny. Unfortunately, there are a few sketches, like “The Dealers”, that goes on for way too long. Even though their beginnings are really strong, they slow down during the middle and end and just get plain boring.
Like I said before, this is an important film in the history of comedic cinema, even with its almost nonexistent budget. Both Chevy Chase and Richard Belzer got their start with this movie. For that reason alone, it’s a worthwhile film to have in my collection. Other than its history, the satire can be pretty strong. There’s a 2001 spoof at the beginning which replaces the giant monolith with a television. The Uranus Corporation is also a good spoof of big business and some of the crap that they produce, in this case literally.
This is a pretty short review, because I really don’t have anything to say that I haven’t said already and if I keep going, I fear that this review will get way too redundant. The Groove Tube is simply a mediocre movie, especially when compared to the sketch comedy kings, Monty Python. I will say it’s better than anything SNL has produce in years. While it may be edgy, offensive, and occasionally funny, I can’t really recommend The Groove Tube unless you’re interested in seeing a piece of comedy history.