I think My Cousin Vinny is an underrated comedy. The film about a fish out of water lawyer from Brooklyn trying his first big case in Alabama has many individual funny moments and some great acting performances. Vincent Gambini (Joe Pesci) winds up in so many awkward moments thanks to his brash personality and his lack of legal experience. He thinks that wearing a tight-knit black cotton shirt under a leather jacket with black slacks is appropriate courtroom attire. He doesn’t know how to stand when the judge enters the courtroom and he knows nothing about trial procedure or strategy because he’s never tried a case before.
When Vinny makes his first appearance in court, he’s reprimanded by the by-the-book judge for his attire, his lack of courtroom etiquette and his legal ineptitude. Vinny takes the judge’s criticism to heart. He buys a new suit, starts reading legal textbooks and genuinely works hard to win the case, but it isn’t easy. He experiences one setback after another. His hotel room is located next to a set of train tracks over which a roaring train passes every night. Add to that a crowing rooster and a bunch of other rural sounds that wake Vinny in the middle of the night and very early every morning, and he reaches a point where he can’t sleep in that hotel room anymore. He drives out to an empty field to sleep in his car, hoping for quiet serenity. A powerful thunderstorm hits, but Vinny manages to sleep like a baby. The next morning, he opens his trunk, slips on the muddy ground left slick from all of the rainfall the night before, and accidentally flings his clean suit into the mud.
Scrambling to find somewhere in town to get get his suit cleaned, Vinny discovers that there is no one-hour dry cleaner in town so he must buy a new suit. The problem is that the only store where he can buy a new suit is closed because the entire store has the flu. His last resort is a vintage shop where he is forced to settle for an 18th century-looking, secondhand red, vintage usher suit. When Vinny enters the courtroom wearing the vintage suit, the judge is none-too-pleased because he believes that Vinny is mocking him by wearing it. The reaction of all in the courtroom, and particularly that of the judge, is one of my favourite moments in the film. When the judge asks Vinny if he’s wearing the suit to mock him, Vinny replies, “It's either wear the leather jacket, which I know you hate, or this. So, I wore this ridiculous thing for you.”