Why Sam Raimi’s Edit Scene In ‘The Hudsucker Proxy’ Rules

Sam Raimi’s edits make the rounds of most directors.

Warner Bros.

By Meg Shields Published 15 July 2022

Welcome to The Queue – your daily distraction of curated video content from across the web. Today we watch a video essay that unpacks the hula hoop montage in the Coen Brothers film “The Hudsucker Proxy,” which Sami Raimi was responsible for as second unit director.

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness may have come and gone, but Raimi fever is still gripping the nation! See, we I haven’t forgotten that we have a skyscraper evil Dead the movie is coming, and neither should you! There are plenty of people who have been marathoning Raimi’s work in anticipation of his recent Marvel joint. But how many people thought about including the 1994 film The Hudsucker Proxy in the middle of their watch lists?

Yes, of course, the film about a naïve business graduate (Tim Robbins) becoming the head of a manufacturing company after inventing the hula hoop was “made” by the “Coen Brothers”. But did you know that Raimi co-wrote the screenplay? And that, more specifically, he was the director of the second unit?

Well, even if you doesn’t knowing about Raimi’s involvement, one scene in particular – a montage where we see the production and the slow success of the hula hoop, to be precise – has the evil Dead director’s fingerprints everywhere.

In the following video essay, we’re treated to a brief look at how Raimi and the Coen brothers formed a creative partnership, and how the six-minute edit is a good way to understand their differences as filmmakers. With a few exceptions you can count on on one hand, the Coens aren’t really “editing” directors. Meanwhile, as the video essay enthusiastically argues, love deployment of mounts. And unlike the Coens, Raimi doesn’t just use editing to condense time or mood, but emotions and themes. In Raimi’s hands, editing allows for abstraction, physicality and eye-catching visual gags. And there’s no better example of that than the hula hoop rig of The Hudsucker Proxy, which, in less than ten minutes, manages to sum up not only the idea behind the film but also the motivations of its filmmakers who like blank checks.

Watch ‘Sam Raimi’s Best Scene (In a Movie He Didn’t Direct)’:

Who did this?

Based in New York Patrick (H) Willems created this video essay explaining why mounting the hula hoop in The Hudsucker Proxy illustrates what makes Sam Raimi such an exciting filmmaker. Willems has been creating content on YouTube for nearly a decade. You can find their own directing efforts and video essays on their channel here. You can also find Willems on Twitter here.

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Related Topics: Sam Raimi, The Hudsucker Proxy, The Queue

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Meg Shields is the humble farm boy of your dreams and a senior contributor to Film School Rejects. She currently directs three columns at FSR: The Queue, How’d They Do That? and Horroscope. She is also a curator for One Perfect Shot and a freelance writer for hire. Meg can be found screaming about John Boorman’s “Excalibur” on Twitter here: @TheWorstNun. (She she).

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