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O Lucky Man! (1973)

 -  Comedy | Drama | Fantasy  -  20 June 1973 (USA)
7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 5,245 users  
Reviews: 71 user | 28 critic

This sprawling, surrealist musical serves as an allegory for the pitfalls of capitalism, as it follows the adventures of a young coffee salesman in Europe. Many actors play multiple roles, ... See full summary »

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Title: O Lucky Man! (1973)

O Lucky Man! (1973) on IMDb 7.8/10

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Michael Arnold Travis / Plantation thief
...
Sir James Burgess / Monty
...
Gloria Rowe / Madame Paillard / Mrs. Richards
...
Mr. Duff / Charlie Johnson / Dr. Munda
...
Patricia
...
Stewart / Prof. Millar / Meths Drinker
Peter Jeffrey ...
Factory chairman / Prison governor
Dandy Nichols ...
Tea Lady / Neighbour
Mona Washbourne ...
Neighbour / Usher / Sister Hallett
Philip Stone ...
Jenkins / Interrogator / Salvation Army major
Mary MacLeod ...
Mrs. Ball / Salvationist / Vicar'w Wife
Michael Bangerter ...
William / Interrogator / Assistant / Released prisoner
Wallas Eaton ...
John Stone (Coffee Factory) / Col. Steiger / Prison Warder / Meths Drinker / Film Executive
...
Master of Ceremonies (Nightspot) / Warner / Male nurse
Bill Owen ...
Supt. Barlow / Insp. Carding
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Storyline

This sprawling, surrealist musical serves as an allegory for the pitfalls of capitalism, as it follows the adventures of a young coffee salesman in Europe. Many actors play multiple roles, giving the film a stagy tone. Written by Philip Brubaker <coda@nando.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Smile while you're makin' it. Laugh while you're takin' it. Even though you're fakin' it. Nobody's gonna know...

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Fantasy | Music

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

20 June 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A szerencse fia  »

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

Helen Mirren was an 11th hour casting. Fiona Lewis started filming but was fired so Mirren was cast as Patricia instead. See more »

Goofs

A sign says 200 miles to London where Travis is picked up. He has reached there by walking for a while from the military establishment where the explosion took place. The distance even from London to the border of Scotland is 398 Miles. See more »

Quotes

Michael Arnold Travis: [graffiti] Revolution is the opium of the intellectuals.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Midnight Movies: From the Margin to the Mainstream (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Justice
Written by Alan Price
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User Reviews

 
An overlooked, strangely upbeat satirical masterpiece.
4 March 2002 | by (Bronx, New York) – See all my reviews

This remarkable, often overlooked film deserves a higher critical reputation than it has largely received. It represents a blossoming of the themes introduced in "if..." (the previous film in Anderson's trilogy) and a playful, even strangely upbeat reworking of those ideas.

"if..." was an explosion of the subconscious, repression fermenting into fantasized revolution; in "O Lucky Man!" the repression has matured into deep, abiding social, political, and economic corruption-- but the fantasies have matured as well. Mick Travis's journey through early '70s England features calamity after calamity, atrocity piled onto atrocity, but it feels lighter than air. It rises like a joke-filled balloon. That vantage point gives the viewer the two advantages unavailable to Travis: wisdom and perspective, and the film's humor comes from the distance between us and the characters scurrying below. (But the film is not, I think, cynical; the road to enlightenment may be hard one but the film makes it clear that it's not unreachable.)

Surrounding Malcolm McDowell's indefatigable Candide of a hero, the supporting cast flows in and out of their multiple roles like a comic repertory company, in which the same actors show up in scene after scene shuffled into a new assortment of scoundrels, con-artists, victims and sages, climaxing (don't worry, I'm not going to spoil it) in a beautiful, subtle joke which has to be seen to be understood.

From the silent-movie pastiches through Price's terrific songs (the music is used admirably) through wild, spontaneous moments of parody, uninhibited symbolic flourishes, and a few small scenes of genuine poignancy, "O Lucky Man!" deserves to be recognized as one of the great films of the 1970s, and perhaps of all time. It's certainly one of my personal favorites. Movies, I think, though bigger than ever, have become smaller and smaller at heart; more films should have the ambitions this film does and deliver on so many of them.


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