I say formal, because, of course, I had heard of Caddyshack, and had heard some of the quotes, such as the Zen golfing philosophy, "Be the Ball." And you'd have to live under a rock not to know that it features a dancing,l animated puppet-like gopher. However, it was when I was watching the beginning of the movie that I even considered that "Caddyshack" might be named after a Caddy Shack, that is some sort of shed-like structure in which golf assistants hang out. If you're the other person who has somehow avoided this movie for this long, I'll clue you in... it's not. Oh, sure... there was a dramatic coming-of-age story about young caddies working their summers at the golf course, but that movie wasn't made. That's how Caddyshack was originally intended, but after bringing on power-hitter comedy actors such as Chevy Chase, Bill Murray and Ted Knight, the movie changed into a comedy. Throw in the fact that it was Rodney Dangerfield's first movie part, and it really couldn't have gone any other way.
What is now a cult classic was, at the time, a film that is, quite frankly, lucky to have been made at all. It was green-lighted by Orion Pictures, but assigned a really small budget. It was being directed by first-time Director Harold Ramis, had a cast made up of two diverse groups: the very young great unknowns, who had each acted in about one movie each - if that - and power-hitters who loved to party. Hard. Take this group of actors and actresses, along with crew and extras, put them on location, living (and partying) out of a hotel on the golf course grounds and you would (rightly) expect drinking, drugs and debauchery that is legendary to this day.
The end result was a lot of footage (around four hours of it), from which it needed to get down to about an hour and a half. This lead to a lot of cutting and tough decisions, but, in the process, the original coming of age drama faded into the background, with only the main character's storyline making it into the final cut. Not only were these young stars cut out, but they were upstaged by an animatronic gopher. In the end, Caddyshack is a story of the little guy standing up to and challenging the established status quo.
If you're looking to upgrade your copy of Caddyshack, I would highly recommend getting it on Blu-ray. The video quality and surround sound were both well done and high quality, and the Bio Caddyshack: The Inside Story 30th-Anniversary documentary was greatly entertaining, at times feeling sort of like a "Behind the Music" episode, with the tales of after-hours debauchery. At around 80 minutes, it's nearly as long as Caddyshack, itself. And, if you're seeing it for the first time, you might as well see it with the crispness of Blu-ray.