Director Richard Benjamin has found a quintessential comic premise for young adults in the eighties: a couple purchases a house. The Money Pit is elaborately physical, but in the manner of Buster Keaton pictures, with some scenes reminiscent of those charmed moments when an entire wall would collapse on the hapless Keaton, but our beloved "stoneface" happened to be standing just where the opening for a door was. [26 Mar 1986, p.C10]
The nimble Hanks again proves his delicious way with a double take; Long is nothing if not likable, and Godunov is a supremely silly narcissist. If the filmmakers had trusted these performers more, and stuck closer to reality, things might have turned out better. Instead of a real-estate fiasco anybody could roar at in recognition. The Money Pit has been inflated into a noisy destruction derby. [21 Apr 1986, p.82D]
The Money Pit is Richard Benjamin's attempt to make a '30s comedy through the lens of Steven Spielberg -- there are contraptions and "smart" dialogue and, unfortunately, nothing to hold them together. [28 Mar 1986, p.D2]
The Money Pit is simply the pits. There is really very little else to be said about this gruesomely unfunny comedy. Unofficial remake of the 1948 Cary Grant-Myrna Loy starrer Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House begins unpromisingly and slides irrevocably downward from there.
This film tells the story of a young couple and a house. Walter is a failed showbiz agent who works for pay a lot of debts left by his father, who fled with the money of the artists. Anna is violinist in an orchestra directed by her ex- husband, Max, a conductor with a blonde hair onlyThis film tells the story of a young couple and a house. Walter is a failed showbiz agent who works for pay a lot of debts left by his father, who fled with the money of the artists. Anna is violinist in an orchestra directed by her ex- husband, Max, a conductor with a blonde hair only smaller than his ego. Forced to move from their apartment, they faced the real estate jungle of Manhattan, ending up buying a big suburban house, in a deal that seems like a dream come true... but these dream will crumbling slowly, as the old house weaknesses are becoming evident, for madness of the two lovebirds and delight of the audience.
Walter is played by a young Tom Hanks, in a time where he made several comedies. Despite the youth, we can recognize many characteristics that he will develop in latter films. Anna is embodied by Shelley Long, a actress very skilled in comedies. Joe Mantegna also has a role as Art Shirk, a quite wealthy plumber. The film was directed by David Giler and Steven Spielberg, and is the beginning of a good partnership between Spielberg and Hanks who will result in successes like "Saving Private Ryan". Context and situational jokes prevails, as well as the hilarious grimacing of the two main actors and a fabulous (and famous) Hanks laugh, well-remembered by those who like this film. In the midst of so many good points, just one less good note: I believe the script superficially explores the comic opportunities brought about by love triangle Walter-Anna-Max, introducing conflict elements very late and giving them light solutions.
In the beginning, this comedy doesn't seem to have anything new or special. It's just a comedy from the Eighties, a decade when this genre was very exploited and, to be honest, battered by several absolutely disastrous films. But is exactly by that, partially, why "Money Pit" deserves to be noteworthy: because it's good and works so well. This film, a remake of a Forties comedy, is a guarantee of laughter, no matter we're watching for the first time or the hundredth in our lives. It's always funny.…Expand