Hollywood or Bust (1956)

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A singer who can't pay his bookie joins a nerdy, star-struck movie fan and his Great Dane in a cross-country convertible ride to Hollywood.



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Complete credited cast:
Maxie Rosenbloom ...
Actress Anita


The last movie with Jerry Lewis and Dean Martin together, is a satire of the life in Hollywood. Steve Wiley is a deceiver who cheats Malcolm Smith when he wins a car, claiming that he won it too. Trying to steal the car, Steve tells Malcolm that he lives in Hollywood, next to Anita Ekberg's. When Malcom hears that, they both set out for Hollywood and the adventure begins... Written by Chris Makrozahopoulos <makzax@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A COAST TO COAST FUN TOOT! (original print ad - all caps) See more »


Comedy | Musical


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Release Date:

6 December 1956 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Beginner's Luck  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


When they arrive in Hollywood, Anita Ekberg is starring in a movie where she plays Napoleon's lover. That same year, Ekberg was featured in War and Peace (1956), another Paramount release, which included Napoleon as a character. See more »


Apparently, Tashlin was a little confused about Paramount's production schedule: Malcolm mentions having seen the Burt Lancaster adaptation of The Rainmaker, which would not come out until after Hollywood or Bust was already released. See more »


Old Lady: [getting into the car] You're a dear sweet young man.
[seeing the dog]
Old Lady: Oh my, does he bite?
Steve Wiley: [laconically] Only me lady.
See more »


Featured in E! True Hollywood Story: Dean Martin (1999) See more »


It Looks Like Love
Music by Sammy Fain
Lyrics by Paul Francis Webster
See more »

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User Reviews

End of an era
30 May 2011 | by (San Francisco) – See all my reviews

This is the last of the 16 movies which Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis made together, and by this point they weren't even speaking to each other off-camera, but this time the screen is filled with even more inventiveness than usual. That's because the director is master satirist Frank Tashlin, who, having already taken on rock and roll (The Girl Can't Help It) and comic books (Artists and Models, also with Dean and Jerry), now turns his attention to movie fandom.

Dean plays Steve, a down-on-his-luck gambler who wants to pay off his debts by cheating in a raffle to win an expensive car, but the legal winner (Malcolm, played by Jerry) also turns up, and the contest holder rules that they have to share the car. Malcolm (a movie fan who's obsessed with Anita Ekberg) wants to drive the car to Hollywood to meet her, and Steve goes along for the ride, planning to ditch him somewhere along the way. Unfortunately, Malcolm is also bringing his gigantic dog "Mr. Bascom," who manages to thwart a few of Steve's plans.

Besides the numerous references to movies real and fictional (i.e., "Chloroform and Old Calico"), we also get romance, great musical numbers, beautiful Technicolor, Jerry doing a bullfighting routine a la Rudolph Valentino, a hilarious gambling sequence in a Vegas casino, and much more. Dean and Jerry part ways after this, but at least they leave on a high note.

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