Five Favorite Films

Adam Pally's Five Favorite Films

by | December 7, 2015 | Comments

Photo by Mark Davis, Getty Images

Adam Pally, of Happy Endings and The Mindy Project fame, is starring in the film Night Owls, about a guy who has to keep a girl awake all night after she downs a bottle of sleeping pills. We talked to him about his Five Favorite Films, but it quickly became evident that they could more accurately be called his “Five Formative Films.” Here are Pally’s picks:

Being John Malkovich (1999) 93%

I feel like that’s going to be a common one on a lot of these people’s list, but for me it’s just about the coolest movie I ever saw. When I saw it I was like, “That is so cool.” I don’t know if that was Charlie Kaufman’s intention, but I love that it was the real John Malkovich. I think that’s where I started to be kind of excessive with pulling back the fourth wall a little bit. Although, that might be a recurring theme with my movies, now that I’m thinking about it.

The Producers (1968) 90%

Number four, I would say is Mel Brooks’ The Producers. It’s a toss up between The Producers and Young Frankenstein. It’s so hard to pick one, but I just feel like the first production of The Producers with Gene Wilder and Zero Mostel is like … I feel like that raised me. That’s my daddy. Probably in the womb that was shown to me.

Out of Sight (1998) 93%

That movie is the coolest Elmore Leonard adaptation that there is. It made me read a book. I went and read Get Shorty after I saw that. That never happens. Soderbergh to me in that movie is at his … I mean, because everything he does is … He may be my most favorite filmmaker, but he’s at his most commercial and Soderberghian. He had just shot The Limey, and he got that out of his system, and he was dabbling; there was that weird Jackie Brown connection. It was just awesome. It’s just so good. He’s got my favorite line in any movie, when Dennis Farina leans over to Michael Keaton, who’s wearing a tee shirt that says, “FBI” on it, and he goes, “You got one of those that says ‘undercover?'” He’s on in Out Of Sight. He should have won a million Oscars.

The Cable Guy (1996) 53%

A lot of people will be like, “What?” but Jim Carrey’s best performance, possibly most grounded. I know that sounds crazy, but when you really think about the character, he’s amazing in it. Every frame he’s just electric. I could watch that movie a thousand times. I think it’s beautifully directed by Ben Stiller, who’s probably the best commercial comedy director of all time. I almost put Reality Bites on this list, he’s so good.

It’s just so f*cking funny, and every scene in that movie is populated with the most genius comedic minds. Jack Black, Bob Odenkirk, David Cross, Owen Wilson — they’re all in that movie, and they all play hugely important small parts. They’re all amazing. It’s dark and f*cked up, and I just love that f*cking movie so much. That may be Judd Apatow’s best film. It’s so good, it’s so good.

The Jerk (1979) 81%

I just feel like that’s a movie that I saw when I was a kid, and you watch it over and over and over again, and you’re like, “Oh, Steve Martin’s doing bits, but they fit a story.” And it’s beautifully shot and directed by Carl Reiner, which some people don’t realize, and I just can’t think of a movie that informed my comedic personality more than The Jerk. It’s also a dumb character… it breaks all these stupid rules that Hollywood has for the sake of humor, and for the sake of jokes, and it’s a feel-good movie. Oh, man. I watch it over and over and over again. It’s got bits of Woody Allen’s kind of mysticalism, but it’s not. It’s jokey but the jokes don’t have punchlines. It’s like a Steve Martin album live, and they did a good job with making it a story. In a lot of ways you have no Borat without The Jerk, you have no anything, Lebowski; all those characters are Jerk-inspired. I play dumb quite a bit; I’ll say that right now. I don’t know if you call it a crutch, or what, but I tend to lean dumb… I don’t think I would have been able to get away with that had it not been for that movie.


Night Owls opens in theaters on Dec. 4.

  • Bryton Cherrier

    Being John Malkovich is awesome though.

  • Bret Osborne

    Cable Guy and Out of Sight? I guess I must have terrible taste because to me those two are horrible.

Tag Cloud

Kids & Family Shudder Disney streaming service TCA sequel comics Bravo Crunchyroll USA Network space what to watch Nickelodeon theme song zero dark thirty E! werewolf YouTube Red canceled BET Logo anthology anime Masterpiece technology casting TruTV The Witch President BBC aliens diversity TIFF Cannes cults Disney Channel Food Network Certified Fresh kids Grammys ITV Watching Series mockumentary 2015 Emmys Comedy Central latino Schedule 2017 Trailer witnail true crime psycho Starz Countdown cooking transformers screenings Captain marvel DC Comics cartoon Vudu MSNBC Extras travel Disney GoT Arrowverse Fall TV cancelled TV series Thanksgiving The Arrangement boxoffice series Opinion LGBTQ Red Carpet facebook richard e. Grant Sundance Now Song of Ice and Fire Netflix Christmas movies rotten movies we love free movies biography X-Men animated See It Skip It History Animation adventure TV TCM Crackle Creative Arts Emmys Interview DC streaming service Reality Spring TV finale Spike 45 tv talk Turner Classic Movies Awards Tour police drama Lifetime YouTube Premium Rom-Com Writers Guild of America AMC Mary Tyler Moore crime drama Podcast harry potter PaleyFest Hallmark indie Summer DC Universe FXX vampires Amazon Prime Video 2016 Paramount jamie lee curtis A24 movies CW Seed Mary Poppins Returns FOX American Society of Cinematographers RT History National Geographic versus sitcom GIFs nature Epix crime thriller Holidays mutant Apple Shondaland docudrama strong female leads Mudbound dramedy quibi Hallmark Christmas movies game of thrones Fantasy Comedy Binge Guide SundanceTV Marvel Studios cancelled TV shows cats blockbuster Netflix TCA 2017 elevated horror YA Mindy Kaling Set visit blaxploitation Brie Larson 71st Emmy Awards Television Academy RT21 stand-up comedy dragons spanish language CNN christmas movies Sneak Peek psychological thriller Cartoon Network Super Bowl SXSW HBO Max teaser Acorn TV Adult Swim Winners CBS thriller singing competition CMT hist golden globes Horror period drama romantic comedy natural history comic Trivia Anna Paquin robots book SDCC Action Comics on TV Music spain Star Wars Cosplay GLAAD Columbia Pictures Calendar supernatural cinemax political drama A&E Tomatazos Ellie Kemper green book PBS CBS All Access science fiction ABC Family Nat Geo Christmas award winner video MTV Western dc USA Film Pride Month Mary poppins war Nominations TV renewals ratings cars television BBC America Musicals Film Festival Pet Sematary comiccon disaster Pixar spy thriller Best and Worst Biopics TBS Peacock sports Mystery Pop Disney Plus Lucasfilm miniseries Hulu cancelled Teen independent cancelled television 21st Century Fox Trophy Talk Disney+ Disney Plus politics Apple TV+ Rocketman HBO Sundance Comic Book canceled TV shows 2019 romance 20th Century Fox Rocky medical drama VH1 TV Land Walt Disney Pictures Tarantino game show Oscars cops Premiere Dates VICE LGBT toy story MCU zombie Dark Horse Comics TNT batman FX Amazon Prime Spectrum Originals Character Guide Country First Look Marvel slashers Star Trek zombies 2020 composers discovery streaming Classic Film Fox News San Diego Comic-Con Syfy WarnerMedia Rock YouTube Amazon justice league The CW 2018 crime Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Heroines Ghostbusters spinoff Tumblr based on movie Video Games Election First Reviews Winter TV Freeform Sony Pictures DGA Toys The Purge Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Ovation NYCC Paramount Network historical drama crossover Turner WGN ESPN unscripted ghosts Pirates Warner Bros. NBC Polls and Games IFC Films south america Superheroes Stephen King doctor who Family Year in Review Box Office Universal children's TV binge The Walking Dead Lionsgate Holiday hispanic festivals DirecTV Showtime Black Mirror OWN 24 frames TLC dceu Martial Arts El Rey Musical foreign Marvel Television joker ABC Elton John Apple TV Plus Valentine's Day spider-man Women's History Month E3 Lifetime Christmas movies Marathons Britbox APB 007 halloween Esquire adaptation Infographic renewed TV shows serial killer revenge social media New York Comic Con IFC breaking bad Superheroe Awards talk show Drama Photos Chernobyl Sci-Fi Reality Competition Emmy Nominations Quiz