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Five Easy Pieces (1970)

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A drop-out from upper-class America picks up work along the way on oil-rigs when his life isn't spent in a squalid succession of bars, motels, and other points of interest.



(screenplay) (as Adrien Joyce), (story) | 1 more credit »
Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 10 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Elton (as Billy 'Green' Bush)
Fannie Flagg ...
Betty (as Sally Ann Struthers)
Marlena MacGuire ...
Twinky (as Marlena Macguire)
Richard Stahl ...
Recording Engineer
Partita Dupea
Lorna Thayer ...
Carl Fidelio Dupea
Nicholas Dupea
Spicer (as John Ryan)


Robert Dupea has given up his promising career as a concert pianist and is now working in oil fields. He lives together with Rayette, who's a waitress in a diner. When Robert hears from his sister that his father isn't well, he drives up to Washington to see him, taking Rayette with him. There he gets confronted with his rich, cultured family that he had left behind. Written by Leon Wolters <wolters@strw.LeidenUniv.nl>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


He Rode The Fast Lane On The Road To Nowhere.




R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

12 September 1970 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mi vida es mi vida  »

Box Office


$1,600,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


The piece played by Dupea on the piano in the back of the truck driving down the road is Frédéric Chopin's Fantaisie in F minor. See more »


When imitating a musical revue, Bobby zips down his shirt, but it is zipped back up in the next shot. See more »


Bobby: [finally talking with his paralyzed father] I don't know if you'd be particularly interested in hearing anything about me. My life, I mean... Most of it doesn't add up to much that I could relate as a way of life that you'd approve of... I'd like to be able to tell you why, but I don't really... I mean, I move around a lot because things tend to get bad when I stay. And I'm looking... for auspicious beginnings, I guess... I'm trying to, you know, imagine your half of this conversation... My ...
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Chromatic Fantasy & Fugue
Composed by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performed by Pearl Kaufman
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Definitely one of the great American films.
31 January 2005 | by (Saint Paul, MN) – See all my reviews

This movie is most famous for a scene in which Jack Nicholson tells a waitress to hold the chicken salad between her knees so he can get some plain wheat toast, but, in a movie as good as this, that very famous scene may be its least memorable one. After that scene, I hadn't heard anything about what this film was really about, and its depth and power took me completely by surprise. It's a story of a man trapped in his own life, unable to find a place to settle. All the locations at which he has arrived have lead to nothing but disappointment and the realization that there just might not be a life for him. God, how I can sympathize. Just as I was starting to question whether Nicholson was as good an actor as everybody seems to think he is, I've come upon his very best performance. Karen Black plays his girlfriend, a hick who loves him to death. He's not sure if she's good enough for him, or vice versa. Lois Smith, Ralph Waite, and Susan Anspach give good supporting performances. A flat-out masterpiece.

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Recent Posts
This Movie is America... NiKoDay
Anybody else felt like Bobby Dupea? Zeder82
So. What were the five easy pieces? steve-2246
What's the point of this? amy-girl
Similar movies to see. Recommend!!! nahuil
Glenn Gould and Five Easy Pieces melliot5
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