Some people have a soft spot for Caveman, although it is not that great a film. It is not without its amusements like the opening credit One Zillion B.C., October 9th. Or the sight gags involving the creation of the worlds first fried egg. That said, Carl Gottliebs approach is relentlessly lowbrow the entire way. The films occasional moment of inventivity notwithstanding, the rest of the film lies down at the level of goo jokes, fart jokes, breast jokes, people running around in circles with the camera undercranked jokes there is even a dwarf to become the butt of pratfalls. Gottlieb gets a good laugh out of having a dinosaur bay at the full moon, so much so that he repeats the gag twice throughout the film. Gottliebs take on the film is entirely as visual slapstick. There is a visual effect with the moon rising, followed in the same shot by the sun coming back up and Gottlieb cannot resist the temptation to accompany it by a slapstick whistle. There is no plot to the affair the story is aimless and Gottlieb shambles it around in a circle with only a vague sense of direction. An extended side-trip to a nearby Ice Age could have been dropped altogether.
The best parts about Caveman are the dinosaur effects, which come across with a wonderfully cartoonish appeal whether licking their lips and rubbing their paws in glee at the prospect of eating people, or the wonderful sequence where Ringo Starr manages to get a dinosaur stoned on berries and reduce it to a wasted mass.
Caveman starred former Beatle Ringo Starr. (In a trivia note, Starr met on the set and then married Barbara Bach who plays a wily seductress and object of Starrs lust in the film). Starr evokes a mournful lost puppy dog sympathy one can see exactly what it was that made him the Beatle that every girl wanted. The film is also notable for being the first major role of Shelley Long who would not long after go on to success in tvs Cheers (1982-93).
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