Friday, April 10, 2020

Incongruity.

Blogging from A to Z Challenge

Theme: Humor in film -- what makes me laugh:


Incongruity.

During the 2015 A to Z Challenge, I shared a post titled Incongruity for Laughs. Rather than re-invent the wheel, I'm going to use that post again.

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When suit-wearing henchmen don aprons and prepare vegetables in the kitchen (Oscar, 1991), or a hunchback's hump switches to the opposite shoulder (Young Frankenstein, 1974), it creates comedy through incongruity--something that doesn't match up with what we expect.

Using an object in an incongruous (unexpected) way is funny. For example, when Jeff Blue (Dennis Quaid) uses a baby stroller to defeat a mugger (Undercover Blues, 1993).

Later, when the mugger, Muerte "My name is Death!" (Stanley Tucci), screams like a girl, it cracks me up. His behavior doesn't match the stereotype of a thug.

When Connie Conehead (Michelle Burke) consumes an entire foot-long sandwich in one bite, that can be expected from an alien. However, when her boyfriend, Ronnie (Chris Farley) exclaims, "Wow! My Mom's the only other woman I know who can take a sandwich like that!" I crack up. That is not what I expect him to say! (Coneheads, 1993)

Alex Hitchens' (Will Smith) love life seems incongruent (Hitch2005). He coaches men on winning the girl of their dreams, yet fails in his own dating strategies. Shouldn't the maestro of matchmaking have all the right moves? His dates with Sara (Eva Mendes) turn disastrous, creating great comedy for the film!

Here's a clip of their first date (and it only goes downhill from there):

Movieclips: Hitch - Jet Ski Mishap

Do you have a favorite incongruous moment in a movie?

6 comments:

  1. I know this movie, Hitch, so hilarious ;))

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  2. Young Frankenstein is one of my favorite movies! Saw it several times in high school with my best friend, and we laughed like it was the first time every time we saw it. My first car was named "Eygore" and I still throw out quotes whenever possible.
    Also, that line by Chris Farley is golden!

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  3. @Frederique ... Hitch is fun! We watched it again a couple weeks ago. So many funny scenes!

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  4. @Dyanne ... You named your car "Eygore"! I love it! I've had a car to two that should have been named "Abby Normal."

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  5. Incongruity is in another Will Smith film, Hancock. A depressed guy with Superman like gifts just doesn't fit the stereotype of a superhero who is supposed to save lives, not mess them up. Good movie.

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  6. @Sue ... You're right... that's another great example of incongruity. Hancock definitely didn't fit the superhero mold! (Add that to my list of films I want to see again!)

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