12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars
Scorsese's overlooked masterpiece, 18 Feb 2004
While this film hasn't got as much attention in the past as Taxi Driver or Goodfellas, it is just as good; only Kundun has been more unjustly overlooked.
Autograph hunter and wannabe celebrity Rupert Pupkin (De Niro)idolises the network television chat show host Jerry Langford (Jerry Lewis, in fine sober form). When an incident leads to a chance encounter with Langford, Rupert tells him he is an aspiring comedian, as much to get rid of him as anything else, Langford tells him to call his secretary. The reality of the situation is lost on Rupert who sees himself as a close friend of Langford and, when his attempts to get his material onto the Langford show fails, leads him to go to desperate measures.
King of Comedy is a scathing attack on the celebrity system that probably plays better in today's reality show climate than it did 20 years ago; it is one of those very rare movies that deserve the term "visionary".
This is one of those rare movies which make you laugh as well as make you uncomfortable; in its own way it is probably a more unsettling film than Taxi Driver because you never know how you are meant to react as a viewer; various parts of the film blur the line between reality and fantasy, and the ending is extremely ambiguous.
If you like black comedies, masterful direction, and want to know why De Niro is considered one of the greatest actors then this is definitely a film for you.