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The King of Marvin Gardens (1972)

 -  Drama  -  12 October 1972 (USA)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 3,020 users  
Reviews: 41 user | 32 critic

'It's Monopoly out there'. Jason Staebler, The King of Marvin Gardens, has gone directly to jail, lives on the Boardwalk and fronts for the local mob in Atlantic City. He is also a dreamer ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Julia Anne Robinson ...
Jessica
...
Lewis (as Benjamin 'Scatman' Crothers)
Charles LaVine ...
Grandfather
Arnold Williams ...
Rosko
...
Surtees (as John Ryan)
Sully Boyar ...
Lebowitz
...
Frank
William Pabst ...
Bidlack
Garry Goodrow ...
Nervous Man (as Gary Goodrow)
Imogene Bliss ...
Magda
Ann Thomas ...
Bambi
Tom Overton ...
Spot Operator
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Storyline

'It's Monopoly out there'. Jason Staebler, The King of Marvin Gardens, has gone directly to jail, lives on the Boardwalk and fronts for the local mob in Atlantic City. He is also a dreamer who asks his brother, David, a radio personality from Philadelphia to help him build a paradise on a Pacific Island - asking him to believe in yet another of his dreams, yet another of his get-rich-quick schemes. But luck is against them both and the game ends badly - real life reduced to radio drama. Written by Dave Cook <cookd@mcmail.cis.mcmaster.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

12 October 1972 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Philosopher King  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One scene had mentioned Marvin Gardens, but the scene was cut. See more »

Goofs

David listens to tape recording he made but during close-up of tape recorder, none of the buttons that would allow it to play are depressed. See more »

Quotes

Jessica: What's going on?
David Staebler: Your mother's gonna murder one of us. So far the only one she hasn't nominated is you.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Columbia Pictures logo does not appear on this film. See more »

Connections

Referenced in People I Know (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Here She Come, Miss America
(uncredited)
Written by Bernie Wayne
Performed by Jack Nicholson
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Weak and painful
15 June 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"The King of Marvin Gardens" is an ensemble piece that turns on the collision of four dysfunctional people. Jack Nicholson plays a perennially depressed, bookish "straight" type opposite the "dynamic" and "goofy" Bruce Dern. Ellen Burstyn and Julia Ann Robinson play, essentially, a mother-step daughter team of hookers. None of these characters is compelling and all of them become quite grating in their various ways; Bruce Dern takes the prize as being the most annoying and tiresome of the bunch.

The movie is set in Atlantic City and makes frequent use of the more lurid, campy or bizarre aspects of that location. Unfortunately, the antics of the four main actors are mostly forced, mannered and flat. I found myself cringing at the strained quality of the movie as it reached toward inspiring in the audience some sort of artsy, reverse-chic epiphany it was nowhere near attaining.

There really is no plot, and almost any scene could be deleted without affecting the remainder of the film...except for the happy outcome that the thing would be that much shorter. I sat through most of this mess but at a certain point I finally succumbed to my urge to walk out and... walked out. It felt really good to say goodbye to "The King of Marvin Gardens."


8 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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