Lindsay Anderson and Larry David—Separated at Birth?
My theory that everything in real life occurred in the fictional universe of Seinfeld first took a strange turn the other night as I watched Lindsay Anderson’s 1968 youthful-rebellion classic If … with Malcolm McDowell.
After the scene in which McDowell and his mates take potshots with real bullets at the war-game exercises at their private school, we are left to believe/imagine that they have actually gunned down and killed the school’s chaplain.
They are ushered into the wood-paneled office of the headmaster who starts to give the boys a stern lecture, only to suddenly pull open a very large cabinet door. None the worse for wear, the chaplain sits up and joins the conversation.
Sound familiar? That piece of furniture must be the inspiration for the famous oversized Karl Farbman furniture that Elaine’s boy friend Brett so admired when he wasn’t singing “Desperado.” Yes, the chest of drawers so big, Kramer could let his new friends the Japanese tourists sleep in them.
Jerry: You have them sleeping in drawers?
Kramer: Jerry, have you ever seen the business hotels in Tokyo? They sleep in tiny stacked cubicles all the time. They feel right at home.
Jerry: This has international incident written all over it
And by the way, I also realized that the pompous cliché-spouting headmaster (“Those who are given most also have most to give.”) is surely the model for Dean Wormer in Animal House.