The original is a film about a Broadway producer/conman who seduces little old ladies in order to fund his failing career. He them meets a meek and timed accountant who he convinces to help him swindle his already swindled clients. If the play flops, as it is intended to do, there is no way to pay back investors, and he can pocket the extra money without question.
This sounds like a recipe for success, take a good idea and add music and dance. The added spectacle should get the audience much more involved. The first problem is that even with forty six minutes of more movie we get less explanation of actions and coherence of script. Another short fall is that the 2005 film is at once more cartoony than the 1967 original, less sexy, and more raunchy and offensive.
The biggest shortcoming of the film is that “The Producers” is still very much its live production self and being that it is much more impressive live. The shots are less complicated and the locations more restricted. The truth about musical plays being made into film is that normally there is a good amount of rewriting, even a few more songs, and the result is a hybrid of film and play but with little indication of it having once been on stage. This film is just too close to the live version.
In short, “The Producers” is not a bad film, it simply isn’t a great film. This film is also definitely not family friendly, even with a PG 13 rating, and would probably make a horrible date movie.
Who should watch this film: people who have seen the original and like okay sequels, theater geeks, and anyone who likes song and dance films but has nothing really good to watch.