18 February 2005 | Whythorne
A buried treasure
Every now and then you stumble across a film that has been forgotten, or just ignored, and for the life of you, you can't figure out why. "A New Leaf" is such a film. Seeing this wonderful comedy for the first time was the movie-watching equivalent of discovering buried treasure.
One of the marks of an excellent comedy is one that you can watch a number of times and still laugh involuntarily even though you know what is coming. The performances of Matthau and May, as well as the supporting cast are that priceless.
So many funny and memorable scenes, but a couple of my favorites are: the meeting between Henry Graham (Matthau) and his accountant Beckett (Redfield) as Beckett tries to contain his frustration and explain to Matthau that his money is gone ("perfect"); and the scene where Graham crawls to his rich uncle (James Coco) to ask to borrow money while the uncle is favoring an electric pepper mill during his lavish meal (the expressions on Matthau's face are exquisite).
A delightful, black romantic comedy that somehow manages to be very light, and as a bonus even subtly tosses out some profound truths.