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The Bellboy
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Reviews & Ratings for
The Bellboy More at IMDbPro »

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24 out of 29 people found the following review useful:

No Plot! Just Humor. ;)

Author: robeykr from Warminster, PA
2 September 2002

No Plot -- The film starts with this proclamation. This film is definitely one of Jerry Lewis' best of his carrier. Filmed during the height of his movie output in the 1960's, this film is comedy unto its own sake. The gags just don't stop -- you aren't given a moment to relax, because it's all so funny, you can't stop laughing. The NO PLOT aspect only helps, as the audience is free to concentrate on the moment. I still burst into laughter when the hotel manager is called by the airport to inform him 'HE WHAT!?' Yes, this film is dated by today's standard, but that should come as no surprise. This film was the product of a different era -- and a different society. The change in our society was what made him decide to briefly retire from film in the '70s. The standards of humor just changed. And performers had to change with it. But film is permanent. It is set in celluloid. It can be re-edited, but what would be the point? For anyone who can appreciate 'the artist' for his art, this film still can be enjoyed. For anyone who can look at past films for nostalgia, this film can be enjoyed. It's called comedy -- 'nuff said.

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12 out of 13 people found the following review useful:

dated? (minor spoiler)

Author: Sergeiii from Fribourg, Switzerland
20 March 2001

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

It is with productions like "The Bellboy" that Jerry Lewis earned more and more hostility in the States and made his eventual reputation in Europe (i.e France, of course). This movie is stuck in a continental divide, but also in a temporal one. I have no idea whether Lewis did actually grasp the ideas of surrealism or the absurd movement at the time, but it looks pretty much so. The man somehow managed to mix his usual desperately anarchic slapstick routines with a very clear sense of not making the innate tragedy of the matter an issue at all - only to disclaim at the end that the character shown in the picture might be your neigbour. The achievement here is that Lewis behaves like a lost circus clown throughout the major feature film - never allowing himself to get halfway sentimental or plot-oriented. He is illogic, destructive and spastic; and he makes the whole movie obey his zany rules, thus saving the Sennett/Roach school into a time when people were heavily reflecting on the opportunities of physical humour. Maybe it took the MelBrookses, the Abraham-Zuckers and the Farrellys to make that kind of unromantic comedy truly popular again way later, but here's someone who tried in 1960. Today, it looks like Jim Carrey taking over a Bunuel movie - and that's as silly as it gets.

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11 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

I admit it - I'm a Jerry Lewis fan

Author: calgal84 from United States
9 December 2012

If you don't believe Jerry Lewis is a comic genius, you need to see this film. The humor. The cinematography. Everything is spot on. I know people have said there is no plot to this but watch it. There is. And it's sad and funny, as all good comedy truly is. Still one of my favorites. Watch the reactions of all the people around him. Watch how each scene is set up and framed. Jerry Lewis never saw the critical acclaim here in the US as he did in Europe but I believe he was way ahead of his time. Comedians like Adam Sandler, Eddie Murphy, and even Jim Carrey owe a debt of gratitude for Jerry Lewis paving the way. I wish the younger generation would discover Jerry Lewis' movies, including this one, because I believe they would appreciate his humor and artistry. Check out this movie, The Nutty Professor, Cinderfella and the Errand Boy.

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17 out of 24 people found the following review useful:

Gets Me Every Time!

Author: Meg H from United States
27 December 2003

This movie is one of my all time favorites! Every time I see it I catch something new I hadn't seen before, and, even after watching it so many times, it never ceases to set me into a fit of laughter! Future viewers: Ignore all that junk about it being dated, etc.! Watch this movie and decide for yourself- JL is awesome, and you WON'T be disappointed!

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13 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

Jerry Lewis the true genius of comedy

Author: Petri Pelkonen ( from Finland
28 July 2005

Jerry Lewis produced, wrote and directed The Bellboy in 1960, in four weeks at the Fountainbleau Hotel in Miami Beach, where he was performing at the time.The movie has no plot, it just shows us Stanley the bellboy getting in many hilarious situations.Stanley doesn't speak, he doesn't say a word until at the end of the movie.Lewis shows us some incredible silent comedy, great physical comedy in a way only Jerry can do.And what he does with his face! Marvelous, just marvelous! In this movie Jerry makes also a visit as himself.You can't help yourself laughing when the star arrives with a whole bunch of people.An other great comedian, Milton Berle can be seen there.And Stan Laurel.Well, not quite.Jerry wanted Stan to be in the movie, he sent him the script and Stan did make a few minor changes to it.He deleted one entire scene because it was too mean-spirited.So Stan did have something to do with the picture, but he wasn't seen in it.That's too bad, since Mr Laurel is also one of my favorite comics.But there is Bill Richmond as Stan Laurel look-alike.Mr Lewis will receive next September the Governors award for his charity work.He is the chairman of Muscular Dystrophy Association.Good for you, Jerry!You do deserve all the best in the world.I bought the DVD yesterday and I sure am glad I did.It may not be the most traditional Jerry Lewis movie, but it still works, works like a charm.After 45 years it still does.

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12 out of 19 people found the following review useful:

Why don't you talk boy. "Because you never asked me too"

Author: ajohns1 from St Catharines, Ontario
23 October 2002

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This movie is hilarious I like every little sketch there is some more than others but this is still a very funny especially in the limited time Jerry Lewis had and the limited money. I couldn't expect more from this movie the I'm told it was made because Jerry Lewis wouldn't let Cinderfella out until Christmas So he made this little movie too. And I'm very happy that he did 9/10.

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7 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Not-bad Jerry Lewis comedy

Author: moonspinner55 from las vegas, nv
5 September 2006

Jerry Lewis wrote, produced, directed, and stars in this collection of skits centering around a put-upon bellhop at a Miami Beach hotel. Having just completed "Cinderfella" for a mid-year release, Lewis suggested to Paramount Pictures they hold off showing that film until Christmas and gave them this one in its place (put together in near-record time). Short and relatively painless, the film benefits from Haskell Boggs' sharp black-and-white cinematography, Walter Scharf's bright score, and of course the snazzy locale. Lewis, making his directorial debut, smoothly segues from one sight-gag to the next, and his low-key performance is actually one of his best. **1/2 from ****

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

72 minutes of of sight gags

Author: JasparLamarCrabb from Boston, MA
17 February 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Jerry Lewis's directorial debut is 72 minutes of sight gag after sight gag as Lewis plays a bellboy at the Fontainebleau hotel in Miami. Despite the harassment of co-workers and bullying of managers, Lewis manages to get EVERY job thrown at him done in his own outrageous ways. He also plays two roles...the other being himself(!), in town for an engagement at the hotel. Lewis is priceless in both roles, pantomiming his bellboy role and playing it straight as himself. There are many highlights in the film, from Lewis making the long walk across an insanely large empty theater to dozens of hotel guests trying unlock their rooms with the wrong key. The supporting cast includes Alex Gerry, Bob Clayton and two actresses playing Mrs. Hartunga! Milton Berle has a very clever cameo.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

That raucous laugh and voice

Author: bkoganbing from Buffalo, New York
7 March 2013

In The Bellboy we get to see two Jerry Lewises. Jerry plays a bellboy at the famous Miami Beach Fountainbleu Hotel where a good deal of the film is shot. And he plays movie star Jerry Lewis who happens to be staying at the Fountainbleu with one very large entourage. That's one of the gags in a funny scene involving a limousine. Also staying there is Milton Berle in another gag involving an identical Milton as well as an identical Jerry.

Jack Kruschen plays the head of Paramount Pictures in a prologue opening where he explains this film has no plot or story, it's just the day in the life of a singularly inept bellboy. He's the bane in the existence of hotel manager Alex Gerry and bell captain Bob Clayton. Jerry must be related to someone important otherwise he would have been canned years ago.

That raucous Lewis laugh and voice you will not hear at all, still Jerry puts together a lovely series of sight gags without a sound coming from him. Usually that voice is so much a part of his comedy shtick you'd think he'd be lost without it, but he carries off his goal of making a film that is a tribute to the famous silent comedians of yore.

One gag involves writer Bill Richmond doing an imitation of Stan Laurel. My guess is that Jerry tried to get the real Stan to do this film, but probably health reasons prevented it. It wasn't one of the better gags in the film, it could have used the real Stan to make it work.

The Bellboy is a quieter, but not more gentle Jerry Lewis.

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10 out of 17 people found the following review useful:

I really thought I'd really die watching it

Author: matthank from North
16 August 2003

This movie is solid gags. No plot and JL is very open about that....only gags or what they used to call 'blackouts'. I have simply never laughed so hard as when I watched this movie. But as for the scene where he loses it by the elevators, you may or may not like it (French?) but it nearly caused me to have an early death. Tape it, rent it or buy it, but if you have come this far, watch it!

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