Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments

The Nutty Professor (1963)


Written by Tim Dirks

Title Screen
Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions

The Nutty Professor (1963)

In this farcical comedy (also sci-fi and romance) written, directed, and acted by Jerry Lewis:

  • the Jekyll-Hyde character in the film: buck-toothed, whiny-voiced, nerdy and naive scientist Professor Julius Kelp (Jerry Lewis), who was found in the smoky rubble of his lab after a violent and destructive explosion in the film's opening scene; he meekly explained: "I used too much..."
  • the scene of Professor Kelp's reprimand for causing another explosion, scolded in the office of imposing superior Dr. Warfield (Del Moore), as Kelp sat in a sinking soft leather chair before the desk and shyly looked up; Kelp left a trail of dirty shoe prints on the carpet leading into the office; when asked "How long?!" he had been at the university, Kelp opened up his pocket watch that blared out the Marine Corps hymn: "Halls of Montezuma"; Kelp answered: "Two years and 22 minutes now"; Warfield chastised Kelp: "Kelp, it's human nature. Kelp, people just don't like teachers blowing up their kids!" and then he noted: "Try to understand that I understand, that scientists and creators have their little eccentricities. Einstein hated hair cuts, Da Vinci loved to paint, and Newton..." - Kelp interrupted: "He had something to do with figs, didn't he?"
Kelp's Scolding by Dr. Warfield
  • the entrance of Kelp into a local Vic Tanny workout gym, where he was knocked to the ground by an exiting, muscle-bound beefcake male; later when asked if he was hurt when he again fell onto a bouncy trampoline, he explained: "Well, actually, if you would say that a man with an ulcer had a nail in his shoe and a splinter in his finger was then struck by lightning - if you could say that that man was not hurt, then yes you would say I'm not hurt"
  • the scenes of physical comedy - of Kelp using the gym's pulling weight machine (in split-screen, the unscrewed pulley station sent him flying), an almost-blind Kelp (without his glasses) bowling the wrong way at a bowling alley, and the sight-gag of the stretching of his arms when he dropped a heavy weight bar ("I suspect it was somewhat heavier than I...") - the punchline came later when he was seen in bed (with his hands next to his feet, facilitating the scratching of one foot)
  • the scene of Professor Kelp drinking a strange pink elixir and then his transformation into a cool, swaggering, greasy and slick-haired, obnoxious ladies man alter-ego known as Buddy Love (resembling Rat Packers Frank Sinatra and/or Dean Martin)
Kelp's Alter Ego Buddy Love at Purple Pit
Stella Purdy (Stella Stevens) with Buddy
  • the sequence of Buddy Love's first public appearance in the hip Purple Pit hang-out (a dance nightclub for local college students) - in a colorful powder-blue suit, including his stroll to the bar and his detailed instructions to the bartender on how to prepare his favorite cocktail - an Alaskan Polar Bear Heater: ("two shots of vodka...a little rum... some bitters... and a smidgen of vinegar...a shot of vermouth... a shot of gin... a little brandy...lemon peel... sherry...some more scotch..."); the bartender sampled the drink, said: "Not bad" and then fell over
  • the scene of Buddy's vocal performance of "That Old Black Magic" at the piano under subdued lighting - bringing stunned reactions from onlookers, in a vain attempt to seduce pretty blonde student Stella Purdy (Stella Stevens) - after his performance, she could see through his giant ego - Buddy: "Well, honey, I always say, if you're good and you know it, why waste time beating around the bush, true?" Stella: "And I always say that to love yourself is the beginning of a lifelong romance, and after watching you, I know you and you will be very happy together"
  • the scene in Dr. Warfield's office, when Buddy flattered the administrator to act out the famous scene from Shakespeare's Hamlet, and after just one recited line, concluded: "You choked me. It was gorgeous. The prettiest thing I've ever seen in my life"
  • the prom scene, when Buddy, serving as a chaperone, realized his formula was wearing off during his singing, and he was forced to admit to Stella and the rest of the participants that he was really just Professor Kelp; he apologized and confessed: "I didn't mean to hurt anyone. I didn't mean to do anything that wasn't of a kind nature. Learning a lesson in life is, uh, is never, is never really too late. And I think that the, uh, lesson that I learned came just in time. I don't want to, uh, want to be something that I'm not. I didn't like being someone else. At the same time, I'm very glad I was, 'cause I found out something that I never knew. You might as well like yourself. Just think about all the time you're gonna have to spend with you. Well, and if you don't think too much of yourself, how do you expect others to?"; Stella responded that she preferred his real self: "I'm only trying to say that I wouldn't ever want to spend the rest of my life with anyone like Buddy. Being the wife of a professor would be much more normal and much happier" - and she kissed him
  • Stella - with plans to marry Kelp (with a marriage license in hand) - convinced the two that they should elope together: ("We have our own lives to live. Come on, let's go"); he agreed to leave with her: ("Yes, actually, Stella, what's right is right, let's split"); as she turned to walk away arm-in-arm, she revealed that she had swiped two "Kelp's Kool Tonic" bottles from Kelp's father stuffed in the back of her jeans
  • during the final closing credits scene, each of the characters took a bow with a screen credit - Jerry Lewis (as Kelp) clumsily tripped and stumbled into the camera (and caused the screen to go black)

Professor Kelp's Lab Explosion

Vic Tanny Workout Gym

Arms Stretched with Weights

Re-Enactment of Scene From Hamlet

Kelp's Speech: "I didn't mean to hurt anyone"

Elixir Slowly Wearing Off -

Stella's Kiss

"Let's split" (With Two Bottles of Tonic)

Ending: Curtain Calls


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