The Bank Dick (hosted by T.J. Miller!)

We were thrilled when “successful alcoholic” T.J. Miller (Silicon Valley) picked W.C. Fields’ 1940 classic The Bank Dick as one of his favorites, for here’s a funnyman who knows the power of the slightly slurred punchline. Distilling Fields’ essence into a perfect cocktail of jovial, snarky inebriation and virtual Popeye cartoons come to life, The Bank Dick finds one of film comedy’s greatest personas gleefully scowling his way through the sort of role that put him on the map. Fields plays Egbert Sousé(!), a security guard and occasional film director impersonator, who must deflect the constant harping of incorrigible loved ones while stumbling in the direction of his two true loves: liquor, and euphemisms for it. His missteps culminate in the type of epic car-chase that today would probably just be called a DUI, but in Fields’ shaky hands are merely Delightful Under the Influence. If you’re still not sold on this gonzo piece of actual drunk history, consider the point where Egbert teeters on a barstool and mutters to a capped bottle of whiskey, “Take off your hat in the presence of a gentleman.”
Dir. Edward F. Cline, 1940, 35mm, 72 min.

Watch the trailer for “The Bank Dick”!
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