• TOP NOTCH (my top choices)
• HONORABLE MENTION (well worth watching)
• YOU MIGHT WANT TO CONSIDER (I like them but you might not)
• CLASSICS (Great movies up through the 1960s - many don't have any rating)

 Eileen Brennan, Tim Curry, Madeline Kahn  

Summary -  Six guests are invited to a strange house and must cooperate with the staff to solve a murder mystery.

Cautions - Outside of people getting killed by a wrench, lead pipe, rope, etc., my only caution for family viewing is an excessive amount of cleavage.

Commentary - Director Jonathan Lynn keeps the camerawork simple, but effective. He allows the house and the cast to shape the movie; his camera merely frames the moment rather than defines it. Indeed, Clue benefits from a great set and a quality cast. The house is perfect; it's eerie but not frightening on the outside, something of a cartoonish, over-exagerated, but still believable structure that, especially in the dark, doesn't look like a place that would be very welcoming, particularly surrounded by thunder and lightning. Inside, it's dark and warm and even welcoming, but at the same time mysterious and oddly dangerous. It's the kind of place that's small enough for intimacy but big enough that it can host the players and the killings alike and hide the evil deeds within its many walls and rooms and secret passageways.

 The cast easily falls into character; every single actor brings obvious energy an enthusiasm to their parts, all of them hamming it up and having a grand old time overacting and overreacting, getting into the mood and never forcing the performances. They're helped along by quality wardrobe choices and that inviting and spacious but not completely safe or too big house. Tim Curry steals the show as the butler who "butles," the character who's the glue that keeps the story straight and the film moving briskly. His rapid-fire comedic explanation of the murders at the end highlights the movie and is the perfect wrap-up for a picture that moves lightning-fast, offers new developments almost by the minute, and enchants with its expert blend of zany humor, genre cliché, and genuine mystery.
- Martin Liebman


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