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'Spaceballs' is hilarious

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Among the new films coming to theatres this month is "A Haunted House 2," a spoof of more serious movies in which audiences are expected to be terrorized by the supernatural activities in an old house. Over the years, there have been many comedies that parody more serious films. One of these movies is Mel Brooks' "Spaceballs," which came out in 1987 and spoofs the popular "Star Wars" films. Since today is income tax day, perhaps readers are in the mood for a spoof.

In "Spaceballs," Lone Star (played by Bill Pullman) and his sidekick, Barf (played by John Candy), a mog - half man/half dog, rescue the spoiled and pretty Princess Vespa (played by Daphne Zuniga) from the evil but dumb Dark Helmet (played by Rick Moranis). Vespa did not want to marry her fiancée and ran off on the wedding day with her sidekick, Dot Matrix, a C-3P0-type robot. Lone Star has to keep them safe, which he does not want to do. He finds Vespa annoying when he first meets her.

"Spaceballs" is very funny. Lone Star and Barf are great parodies of Han Solo and Chewy, from "Star Wars." In space, their ship is a clunky Winnebago, not a sleek space vehicle. Also, Dark Helmet is a funny spoof of the treacherous Darth Vader. Helmet however, is much smaller and wimpier than Vader.

In addition to the "Star Wars" films, this movie also does an effective job parodying other science fiction films. Among them are "Alien" and "Planet of the Apes."

The cast is strong. Mel Brooks is very funny in two roles. He plays President Skroob, who works with Dark Helmet, and Yogurt, who is based on Yoda. John Candy is also strong as Barf, who often acts like a dog.

"Spaceballs" is made with a lot of affection for "Star Wars." It is a great choice for fans of science fiction, as well as fans of spoofs. This film ranks among Mel Brooks' funniest films.


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