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With: Bruce Vilanch, Whoopi Goldberg, Bette Midler, Robin Williams, Nathan Lane, Lily Tomlin, Raquel Welch, Michael Feinstein, Shirley MacLaine, Florence Henderson, Steven Seagal, Michael Douglas, Paul Reiser, Jenifer Lewis, Roseanne, Carol Burnett, Jeff Margolis, Salma Hayek, Henne Vilanch, Billy Crystal, Marc Shaiman, Christine Baranski, Tim Curry, Traci Lords, David Copperfield, Margaret Cho, Beverly D'Angelo, Ali MacGraw, Lauren Bacall
Written by: n/a
Directed by: Andrew J. Kuehn
MPAA Rating: R for language and risque humor
Running Time: 72
Date: 01/24/1999

Get Bruce (1999)

2 1/2 Stars (out of 4)

Writing Funny

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Opening at the Lumiere, Andrew Kuehn's Get Bruce focuses on a less-known writer, albeit one with noble pursuits: making us laugh. Bruce Vilanch is a line-writer in Hollywood. He's best known for writing and appearing on the new "Hollywood Squares" and for writing the last several Oscar telecasts. He has even supplied Steven Seagal with gags for an event. In fact, he provides "more great lines than a Hollywood coke dealer," Nathan Lane tells us in the movie. Vilanch clients Whoopi Goldberg, Billy Crystal, and Robin Williams appear in the movie to sing his praises. Sadly, this scant 72-minute documentary spends more time on these celebs than on Bruce himself, and we really don't get to know him very well. By the end of the movie, you'll know his face, but you won't know his soul. Happily, Get Bruce does deliver the laughs, especially when Robin Williams riffs on an alternate version of "The X-Files".

(See also Jeffrey's interview with Bruce Vilanch.)

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