The Sublime Genius Of Harold Ramis

Don’t miss this Tad Friend classic profile – released to the public for the next 24 hours on Byliner, on the news of Ramis’ untimely death. On a day in which insecure egos seem collapsing of their own narcissism, it’s worth recalling the calm, glib, hilariously assured sense of himself that gave Ramis his edge. Money quote:

Crude as Animal House was, it was also rambunctiously optimistic. By setting the film in the early sixties, the writers tapped the source of their earliest ideals. “Our generation’s revolutionary energy had slipped away after Kent State and the rise of the violent fringe of the Weather Underground,” Ramis says. “We revived it.” They revived it by making their obvious outsiders into not so obvious insiders. “Woody Allen had defined the American nebbish as a loser,” Ramis adds. “But we felt instinctively that our outsiders weren’t losers. They may not achieve anything in the traditional sense—they may not even be smart—but they’re countercultural heroes. The movie went on after the credits to tell you that these were your future leaders, while the guys from the ‘good’ frat would be raped in prison and fragged by their own troops.”