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The Optimists of Nine Elms (1973)

PG | | Drama | 18 October 1973 (USA)
A retired entertainer makes his living as a street musician on the streets of London. Two young children befriend the old musician, brightening his otherwise colorless life.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Sam
Donna Mullane ...
Liz
John Chaffey ...
Mark
...
Bob Ellis
Marjorie Yates ...
Chrissie Ellis
Katyana Kass ...
Baby Ellis
...
Dog's Home Secretary
Don Crown ...
Busker
Bruce Purchase ...
Policeman
Michael Graham Cox ...
Park Keeper
Bernie Searle ...
Dustman
Tommy Wright ...
Dustman
Pat Beckett ...
Laundry Lady
Daphne Lawson ...
Laundry Lady
Candyce Jane Brandl ...
Laundry Lady
Edit

Storyline

A retired entertainer makes his living as a street musician on the streets of London. Two young children befriend the old musician, brightening his otherwise colorless life.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Meet Sam, the wonder man. He's got madness in his closet, everybody in trouble, the police in circles - and the world in his pocket. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

18 October 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Optimists  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Buster Keaton was originally considered for the lead, but the backers of the film refused to support the project with him as the star. John Mills was then cast but suffered a broken leg and the project was postponed until many years later in 1973. See more »

Goofs

Sam visits the inside of Chelsea Football Club, but the outside of Fulham Football Club (note the graffiti and the park, which is next to FFC). See more »

Quotes

Sam: Inside your head you can build...
Mark: A skyscraper
Sam: Aye... a palace. A what?
Mark: An apple.
Sam: An orange.
Mark: A steamboat.
Sam: The lot. If you think with your eyeballs and forget all that rot from teachers and fathers and mothers and cops. That is *private*. It's *yours*.
See more »

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User Reviews

A lovely film
7 May 2014 | by (Victoria, BC) – See all my reviews

"The Optimists" was a box office disaster when it was released to theaters in 1973, and has all but been forgotten since despite the presence of Peter Sellers. It's a real shame, because it is an absolutely charming movie. Sellers gives an excellent lead performance, making you believe this a man who is well travelled and a little tired and frustrated, but still goes on despite the circumstances. But the child performers who play the kids that befriend Sellers' character also deserve kudos - they are absolutely convincing and their performances don't feel the least bit forced. Director Anthony Simmons (who also co-wrote the screenplay based on his book) avoids a polished look and feel, and really captures the poor side of London and its various residents in a way that makes it feel absolutely real. The story is somewhat meandering, but has so much charm that you will follow it all the way to the end. And the Lionel Bart songs, including the wonderful "Sometimes" are the icing on the cake. If I have a complaint, it's that the British accents are sometimes very hard to make out, though fortunately that's only an occasional problem.


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