If I didn't have a philosophy degree, had watched "Doctor Zhivago" and read Dostoyevsky, I don't think I would have gotten a good chunk of the humor in this film. Nevertheless, I didn't exactly find it to be a knee-slapping comedic romp. In fact, it largely sucked and I stopped watching with 30 minutes left. I just couldn't continue and it's my first time ever stopping a film with only 30 minutes left. Unlike Woody Allen's "Manhattan", which I thought was a timeless classic, because of the mature themes (despite the occasional dated humor), "Love and Death" feels like a very dated work that just won't stand the test of time. That happens sometimes with comedies and this is that kind of film, but I think even in its day it would still alienate many people looking for a good laugh, given it's very intellectualized humor.
As for the intellectual philosophical humor itself, which I largely understood and still foundI dry, It makes it the kind of film I cannot recommend to most people (even if it were funny, which it wasn't).