How Mel Brooks Broke Ground...and the Fourth Wall
Mel Brooks on Mel Brooks on Mel Brooks.
Mel Brooks is a towering figure in the world of comedies, but just how does he do it? Surely, there’s more to his humor than one-liners. In this video, we take a look at one of his most recognizable trademarks, the “meta” quality of his movies (his tendency to reference himself and other films and genres). He routinely breaks the fourth wall and has characters address the audience, he references moments and styles from serious films through a parodic lens, and he’ll utilize his characters and dialogue to generate cultural commentaries (in Dracula: Dead and Loving It, for example, two female characters serve as a springboard into a reference to the Bechdel test). You can see his style in countless other directors’ movies (Edgar Wright, anyone?), and his cultural fingerprints are sure to linger well into the future.