Get to Know Your Rabbit (1972)
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as Donald Beeman
as Mr. Turnbull
as Mr. Delasandro
as Mrs. Beeman
as Mr. Beeman
as Mr. Weber
as Mr. Seager
as TV Reporter
as Mr. Reese
as Mr. Morris
as Mr. Wendel
as Mrs. Wendel
as Mrs. Reese
as Police Officer
as Miss Parsons
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Critic Reviews for Get to Know Your Rabbit
It's some of the seldom-seen UFOs in Brian De Palma's career that can dramatically alter one's perception of his work.
Audience Reviews for Get to Know Your Rabbit
A bizarre nugget from director Brian DePalma's early career, "Get to Know Your Rabbit" lands halfway between Woody Allen's concurrent farces ("Bananas," "Sleeper") and the many late-'60s comedies ("I Love You, Alice B. Toklas," for instance) where a "straight" drops out to experiment with the subculture.
Tom Smothers is Donald Beeman, an executive marketing analyst who turns exasperated with the corporate grind, quits his job, moves to a fleabag hotel and takes lessons to become (ta-daa) a tap-dancing magician. His teacher? Orson Welles, of course. A pitiful string of bookings in sleazy bars follows, but Donald is happy to be living his dream. Along the way, he meets a beautiful gal or two, including groupie Katharine Ross (who must have been asking herself how her career so quickly plunged from "The Graduate" and "Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid" to this silly flick). Familiar faces Charles Lane, M. Emmet Walsh and Bob "Super Dave Osbourne" Einstein also pop in for random scenes, while the always wonderful Allen Garfield has a solid part as an overbearing brassiere salesman. And John Astin is Donald's needy ex-boss who becomes a crucial obstacle to the righteous, unfettered life.
From the start, it's obvious that "Get to Know Your Rabbit" is too absurdist to have any real satirical bite. The plot makes less and less sense as it goes (just how many cut-rate magicians can the marketplace handle?) and, except for a couple of overhead tracking shots, the film has the aesthetics of a bland sitcom rerun. Smothers is a likable star, but his magic skills fail to impress (partly by design, sure). He does allow himself some racy moves that wouldn't pass on television, such as briefly exposing his genitals (too far away from the camera to be notable) and squeezing naked breasts.
"Rabbit" is a fun little romp, but viewers seeking DePalma's comic side are much better off finding his previous film, "Hi Mom!"
A fantastic early comedy from Brian de Palma, and stylistically it's very much his - he loves his tracking shots and overheads. Tom Smothers is just damn likable as the dissatisfied business executive who quits his lucrative job in order to become a tap-dancing magician. From this little plot summary alone you can probably surmise that the movie is a ridiculous one, and it is wonderfully so: there are random funny bits inserted everywhere, and Orson Welles lends the unique hilarity that only Welles can to the character of the magic instructor. This movie combines de Palma's almost surreal craziness with Tom Smothers's casual humor as well as a bit of old-fashioned madcap zaniness. (Bob Einstein, known for his work on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, even turns up for one scene, as do several other familiar faces of cinema, including M. Emmet Walsh.) Maybe all the parts don't quite all fuse into a single expertly crafted vision, but so what? The movie's wonderful - wildly off-kilter and entertaining. Love it!
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