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Comedy Movies - Love At Stake

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Love At Stake
Barbara Carrera, Patrick Cassidy, Stuart Pankin,
Kelly Preston, Dave Thomas
MGM 1988
87 mins

It all started with an idea. The Salem witch hunt is conceived because the mayor squanders the town's money on developing and creating edible chastity belts. Loosely set in 1692, MGM's comedy DVD release Love at Stake takes a funny poke at that infamous time in history, where innocents were accused of being witches and subsequently burned at the stake. Young, innocent baker Sara Lee is in love with her childhood sweetheart Miles who has returned to Salem to be the new assistant at the local church. The adventure begins when a saucy stranger comes to town and all kinds of magical mischief takes over everyone's lives.

In the classic spoof style akin to Monty Python, or The Princess Bride, Love at Stake is a silly costume romp, filled with appropriately timed gags and giggles. Sound effects, explosions and breasts are everywhere, making this unknown movie a bit of a gem.

Dave Thomas and Stuart Pankin lead the cast of characters as the mayor and judge of Salem and even Dr. Joyce Brothers, as herself, makes the requisite celebrity cameo at the witch trial. The adorable duo of Kelly Preston and Patrick Cassidy make you want to slap on a corset and churn some butter. Or in the case of the local Salem women, join the New England clam chowder wrestling competition.

Unfortunately there are no extras on the Love At Stake comedy DVD other than a few previews, including the original Bewitched, Urban Legends and Monty Python.

Love at Stake is not the most brilliant movie of the genre, but some of the moments will make you laugh out loud. Over-the-top characters, site gags, potty humour and a silly plot premise are enough to make this film good, harmless fun comedy.

Meredith Sharpe



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