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Ready to laugh?

For my money, Bill Murray was rarely funnier than he was in the big 1981 smash, STRIPES.

When John (Murray) loses his girlfriend, job and apartment in one day, he convinces his best friend Russell (Harold Ramis) to join the army with him as if its a spa weekend to get in shape and enjoy a change of scenery.

From beginning to end, Murray and company deliver non-stop laughs. Warren Oates is great as Sgt. Hulka, John Candy delivers as Ox, the biggest and funniest member of their troop and Conrad Dunn is great as Psycho.

John Larroquette in hilarious as Capt. Stillman, the most inept base leader of all time, more concerned with toy soldiers and his telescope than the soldiers.

Classic lines:

John Winger: Chicks dig me, because I rarely wear underwear and when I do it's usually something unusual. But now I know why I have always lost women to guys like you. I mean, it's not just the uniform. It's the stories that you tell. So much fun and imagination.

[points to the soldier next to him]

Lee Harvey, you are a madman. When you stole that cow, and your friend tried to make it with the cow. I want to party with you, cowboy. If the two of us together, forget it. I'm gonna go out on a limb here. I'm gonna volunteer my leadership to this platoon. An army without leaders is like a foot without a big toe. And Sergeant Hulka isn't always gonna be here to be that big toe for us. I think that we owe a big round of applause to our newest, bestest buddy, and big toe... Sergeant Hulka.


Psycho: The name's Francis Soyer, but everybody calls me Psycho. Any of you guys call me Francis, and I'll kill you.

Leon: Ooooooh.

Psycho: You just made the list, buddy. And I don't like nobody touching my stuff. So just keep your meat-hooks off. If I catch any of you guys in my stuff, I'll kill you. Also, I don't like nobody touching me. Now, any of you touch me, and I'll kill you.

Sergeant Hulka: Lighten up, Francis.


I had forgot how perfect & funny the scenes at the parade grounds are as unofficial troop leader Murray shows up late with his brigade. His delivery of every answer to the General at the mike is fall over funny. ("Blooooowwwwwn Up SIR!")

The final third of the film behind the iron curtain meanders a bit, but the laughs keep coming and every time Murray is on screen, its golden.

It's enjoyable to see Sean Young having fun here as one of the gorgeous MPs the boys fall for at home and abroad. It might be the last time she was ever this likeable on film!

Thirty plus years later, STRIPES still plays to a lot of laughs. If you haven't seen it lately, its time to revisit one of the best comedies of the eighties.

STRIPES commands an A.

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