Week Three: Gilda Live (1980)

Title: Gilda Live

Tone: Funnytown, USA


Director-Mike Nichols

Cast- Gilda Radner, Paul Shaffer

When: 1980

What: The marvelous Gilda Radner performing at the Winter Garden Theatre on Broadway.


  • Gilda Radner was a force to be reckoned with in the comedy circuit of the 1970’s and nowhere is that more apparent than in Gilda Live. Probably the best example of just how talented Gilda Radner was, Gilda Live is a warm, playful, musical, and pretty damn funny performance that perfectly compliments the remnants of the light air of the new year.
  • I’m generally not a fan of concert films, I find them to be a bit repetitive and not nearly as engaging as seeing the performance live, but director Mike Nichols (The Graduate, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf?, Angels in America) captures the atmosphere of Gilda Radner’s performance remarkably well, making it a very engaging concert film.
  • One of the sillier things I enjoy about Gilda Live is seeing the very young, pre-Lettterman, Paul Shaffer. He’s just such an odd musican/comedian, watching him is kind of like watching a musically inclined alien disguised as a human.
  • Throughout Gilda Live Gilda Radner performs some of her most famous characters such as Judy Miller, Emily Litella, Roseanne Roseannadanna, and so on. My personal favorite performance during the show is Lisa Loopner performing The Way We Were on piano. What makes the Lisa Loopner sketch stand out to me is how Gilda Radner interacts with the audience, getting them to sing along, and what begins as a very silly sketch ends on a surprisingly poignant note. Enjoy!

~ by cinematte on January 16, 2011.

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