Best Comedy Movies of 1981
The Great Muppet Caper
Kermit and Fozzie are newspaper reporters sent to London to interview Lady Holiday, a wealthy fashion designer whose priceless diamond necklace is stolen. Kermit meets and falls in love with her secretary, Miss Piggy. The jewel thieves strike again, and this time frame Miss Piggy. It's up to Kermit and Muppets to bring the real culprits to justice.
The Cannonball Run
A cross-country road race is based on an actual event, the Cannonball Baker Sea to Shining Sea Memorial Trophy Dash, organized by Brock Yates to protest the 55 mph speed limit then in effect in the U.S. The Cannonball was named for Erwin G. "Cannonball" Baker, who in the roaring 20's rode his motorcycle across the country. Many of the characters are based on ruses developed by real Cannonball racers over the several years that the event was run.
Bianco, rosso e Verdone
Three Italian have to move from their current city to vote to local elections elsewhere. Pasquale is an Italian emigrant living in Munich (Germany). He has to vote in Matera, Basilicata (south of Italy). He is genuinely happy to come back in Italy, even if just for some days; but the country he is dreaming is different from the reality he meets. Furio move from Torino to Roma with all his family. He is so niggler and heavy that Magda, his wife, is thinking to escape. Mimmo is a young good fellow, moving with his grand mother, from Verona to Roma. His trip is disturbed by worries about her health, while she is very calm. Written by 1felco
Kiss Me, Petruchio
A documentary about the 1978 stage production of The Taming of the Shrew by the New York City Shakespeare company at the Delacorte Theatre in Central Park. Includes scenes from the production, interviews with Meryl Streep (Kate) and Raul Julia (Petruchio) as well as an introduction by producer Joseph Papp and audience commentary.
A father brings a young child to an emergency room to get treatment for a minor injury occurring in an innocent accident, but he gets accused of child abuse. Child welfare agencies commit grossly unfair over-reactions to remove the child forcibly from the Father (Arkin), who must brave the arcane system to reclaim his daughter.
Steve Martin: Steve Martin's Best Show Ever
Steve Martin's fourth NBC special was in the spirit of his previous association with Saturday Night Live. It was broadcast live from Studio 8H, produced by Lorne Michaels and featured some original cast members of the show.
At This Late Date, the Charleston
A young man gets thrown into detention after an episode of sexual assault; he soon meets several impostors in the same situation.
The Orchard End Murder
Charthurst Green, Kent, 1966. Pauline Cox accompanies Mike Robins to a village cricket match in which he is playing, but becomes bored and wanders away. She fetches up at the local railway station, where she is first entertained to tea by the garrulous, hunchbacked station master, then upset by the intrusion of the latter's assistant Ewen, who proceeds to kill a rabbit in her presence. Making her way back to the match, Pauline is waylaid by the simple-minded Ewen as she crosses an apple orchard; when his advances become violent, she tries to fight him off and he strangles her. The station master helps in covering up the murder, burying the corpse in the orchard.
Nothing to Hide
Two best friends couldn't be more different; Jack is a smooth-talking ladies man, while Lenny is anything but. But when Lenny meets Karen, it threatens to change the dynamic of their friendship.
A group of graduating students from a midwestern high school comes to New York City on a trip to celebrate the impending end of school. The students include: Roger Ellis, an ambitious teen aiming for success in big business; David, an aspiring rock star; Judy Matheson, a stagestruck coed actress wannabe; Denise, a free-spirited girl hoping to obtain a degree of sophistication; Fred, a lotharo looking for any Big City woman to be with; and Jon Lipton, a would-be artist hoping to make it big. Mickey Rooney also appears briefly as himself during the backstage scene at the play "Sugar Babies."