Movie: "The Hudsucker Proxy"
Year: 1994
Rated: PG
Genre: Comedy
Directed by: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
Writing credits: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen, Sam Raimi

Reviewer: -RoG-
Posted: 4/22/2008

Plot: Some executives at a big company hire a guy who they think is an imbecile in hopes of driving the stock to rock bottom prices so they can buy 'em all up, but their fall guy may not be the numskull they believed him to be.

Review: I don't know how many times I've seen this movie over the years, but I can assure you, it's a lot. And after having seen it so many times, I can honestly say that it's hard to find any flaws whatsoever in The Hudsucker Proxy and that's why it gets the coveted 5-pickle rating which I rarely give out. The Coen brothers are obviously masters of their craft, but if you ask me, the Hud always stood out from their other films. Maybe it's because of the light-hearted nature of the film or all the exaggerated characters from the late 50's... whatever the case, it's a formula that couldn't have worked out more brilliantly. Naturally, like so many great films, it was a total flop at the box office, but more and more people are becoming fans of the Hud in recent years.

The story starts out with Waring Hudsucker (Charles Durning), founder of Hudsucker Industries ("Long live the Hud!"), as he commits suicide by jumping out of the window on the 44th floor of the company building (45 counting the mezzanine). At this same moment, Norville Barnes (Tim Robbins) is entering the building for his first day on the job at Hudsucker Industries, almost like a prophetic message that he would soon be taking Waring's place as the company CEO.

The board of directors worry because, with Waring dead, his controlling shares of the company stock will be made available to the public. So, Sidney Mussburger (Paul Newman), their leader of sorts, devises a plan to make the company stock seem virtually worthless by appointing a moron as the new President. He believes that by doing so, it will cause the public to panic and then the stock will be so cheap that the board of directors can buy it up for themselves.

Naturally, this leads to Norville becoming the company president. And although his ideas seem a bit simple, it's often the most simple ideas that strike gold, and his idea ("You know, for kids!") does just that. But Mussburger and the board of directors conspire against Norville and come up with a plan to make him their fall guy, literally. But just as the forces of evil are working against him, the forces of good are there to stick a wrench (or dentures) in the big clock that makes the world go 'round. I won't say any more about the story itself because I wouldn't want to ruin the experience for those of you who haven't already seen it.

If you couldn't tell already, the movie has a superb cast and features more recognizable actors than any other Coen brothers film. If you ask me, the real show-stealer of the movie is Amy Archer (Jennifer Jason Leigh), the sassy, fast talkin' career gal who's trying to get to the bottom of just what's going on at Hudsucker Industries. It's bar none, the best role of her career - and that's saying a lot because she's done some great work over the years.

The entire supporting cast seems like they were born to play the roles they were placed in. Whether it's Buzz the elevator operator, Moses the clock maintenance man, or Aloysius the creepy guy who scrapes names off of doors... you're gonna love every last one of 'em.

Oh, and for all you Bruce Campbell fans out there, he's got a nice little role in the film opposite of Jennifer Jason Leigh at the newspaper as well, so be sure to keep an eye out for him.

Sure, sure... it's a truly unique film and you owe it to yourself to see it immediately if you haven't already done so. I'm so convinced you'll absolutely love The Hudsucker Proxy that I'd bet my Pulitzer on it!

Overall rating: WholeWholeWholeWholeWhole
(Scored on a 0.5 - 5 pickles rating: 0.5 being the worst and 5 being the best)

Reader Comments

Can't touch this
Apr 22nd, 2008, 03:16 PM
I'm glad to see some love for The Hud. I think it's one of the most underrated films yet made. I can't for the life of me understand why it was panned. Thanks for the jokes, Rog. I chuckled at "45 if you count the mezzanine". And speaking Ms. Leigh, I think she is one of this century's most underrated actors.
Apr 22nd, 2008, 03:23 PM
I was not even aware of the existence of this movie and thus have not seen it. I suppose that was a serious, grievous oversight that should be fully rectified in the near future. Or at least, I would like it to be.
hanging out
Apr 22nd, 2008, 05:00 PM
I have to say I have seen this movie many times and I know I like it. but I also find it very forgettable. I know hula hoops are involved somehow. Thats how I get sucked it to watching it whenever I stumble upon it on TV. I remember I like it but I can't remember a damn thing about it.
Fake Shemp
Apr 22nd, 2008, 06:03 PM
I've seen it many, many times - own copies on VHS and DVD and like the movie well enough - I just can't really seem to rally behind it for some reason. By all means the movie is shot beautifully and most everyone delivers fantastic performances - I've just always found something about it to be lacking in a way that I can't exactly put my finger on
Smooth Operator
Apr 23rd, 2008, 01:32 AM
I agree that this film is highly underrated. Paul Newman, Tim Robbins, and Jennifer Jason Leigh all gave great preformances. And what could be said about Bruce Campbell that hasn't been said before?
High recommendations to anyone that hasn't seen this film.
Can't touch this
Apr 23rd, 2008, 07:16 AM
Perhaps, and this is just my theory, perhaps you guys can't seem to remember the movie because it's overshadowed so much by the Coen's other films. When you look at the fact this was done by the Fargo and Big Lebowski guys, it just seems almost out of character for them.
Apr 23rd, 2008, 08:49 AM
I remember watching this movie when I was younger, but I could never remember what it's name was. Thanks, Rog!
Clean Shaven Nerf Herder
Apr 23rd, 2008, 11:34 AM
This is one of those Coen Bros. movies that I love, but can't watch unless I'm in just the right mood. Unlike Lebowski, it only fits at certain times. Great flick, though. Pefect bit of cinema.
is hopped up on goofballs
Apr 23rd, 2008, 12:16 PM
I can never decide which Coen Brothers movie I like the best, but this is definitely a great flick.
The Power of Grayskull
Apr 23rd, 2008, 06:47 PM
Rog, you've made my day by featuring this film and giving it such due love.
The Hud has been one of my most favorite films of all time for a very, very long time. And like you, I've seen it a million times and love every viewing. You're right in that it is a perfect movie and every human being who dies without seeing this movie is thusly ruled incomplete.
100% Regulator
Dec 30th, 2008, 11:31 PM
I saw it for the first time last Easter.
frappez le cochon rouge
Dec 30th, 2008, 11:33 PM
I still <3 Jennifer Jason Leigh.