Neighbors was the John Belushi/Dan Aykroyd show, with the famous Saturday Night Live team swapping personas for this bizarre excursion into the outer reaches of manic comedy.
In his final film, Belushi played Earl Keese – a suburbanite who, with his wife, Enid (played by Kathryn Walker,) leads a staid, uneventful life. But all that changes with the arrival of Vic (Aykroyd) and his spouse, Ramona (Cathy Moriarty), their new neighbours.
A dyed-blonde Aykroyd makes a frontal attack on Belushi’s values, and in no time at all has taken over his car, his house, his bank account and even his family.
Aykroyd’s insane behaviour triggers off a like response from hitherto tranquil Belushi and the two neighbours are soon indulging in a series of ‘get even’ schemes, ending with Belushi’s total transformation from suburban bore to liberated madman.
Despite the riotous comedy, the movie was a box office disappointment, and failed to attract its potential audience, even after Belushi’s untimely death a few months after the film was released.
John G Avildsen