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Freebie and the Bean
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Reviews & Ratings for
Freebie and the Bean More at IMDbPro »

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14 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

The most dysfunctional buddy cop movie I've ever saw!

Author: Brian T. Whitlock (GOWBTW) from WILMINGTON, NC
28 April 2006

Before Riggs and Murtaugh, or even Starsky & Hutch, there's Freebie and The Bean, most in-your face buddy team of the police force. Maybe they are the laughing stock of the police force. These team make Dirty Harry want to change his ways of handling crime. These guys put the P.B. in Police Brutality! But in a funny way! Other than attacking the perpetrators they attack each other. Freebie(James Caan) is a hot-head and practical joker, while Bean(Alan Arkin) is calm in some ways just as the same as Freebie. Ford really put themselves in high gear with their vehicles, and the famous white LTD, took a lot of punishment through the movie. My favorite scenes is where the car leaped off the bridge, and made a window in someone's apartment. Calling a tow truck? HA! You better call a crane instead. While most cops work out their differences, Freebie and the Bean handle their way, they go at each others throats! This movie is funny, scary, and adventurous all together, with the choice of stars, everything was pulled off great. And how. What a comedy! While you have a chance. 4 out of 5 stars.

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16 out of 19 people found the following review useful:

Classic 70's actioner!

Author: thecat72 ( from NYC
21 November 2000

A mainstay on cable in the 70's, Freebie and the Bean is by no means "great" but it certainly is thoroughly entertaining to anyone who doesn't let political correctness stand in their way.

This is no doubt a film that can offend; the two cops (especially Caan) use muscle whenever they can; a crossdresser is treated horribly and insulted; there's some racial humor. But hey, this was made in 1974 when people simply weren't as uptight as they are now.

It's a goofy movie, it has goofy music, goofy comedy and a goofy script. The goofiness, violence and non-political correctness of this flick make for an odd mix, but it's an entertaining mix. Cann and Arkin are great in their roles, and show geniune affection and friendship for each other as they try to keep a criminal alive to break a case.

Car chase fans especially like this movie, and there are some classic chases here! The highlight chase shows the duo chasing after a blue car with some truly amazing stuntwork.

All in all if you aren't the easily offended type, and like some goofy comedy mixed with action, it's worth a spin, if only to see how movies were made when not under a watchdog's microscope.

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12 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

This movie is both odd and quite funny.

Author: yossarian100 from usa
18 December 2002

This movie is both odd and quite funny. I saw Freebie And The Bean at the theater and laughed so hard I was actually asked to leave.

It's always a pleasure to watch Alan Arkin work, and he works so well playing off James Caan, who's fantastic in this film, too. Be forewarned, though, if you're bothered by things politically incorrect, you may be offended by Freebie And The Bean.

The story is unimportant because it's the comic skits that make this movie work. Freebie (James Caan) is part of a detective team who thinks the major part of his benefit package is whatever he can walk away with, while Bean (Alan Arkin) plods along worrying that his wife is having an affair with the landscaper. Freebie and the Bean crashing their car off an overpass and into the upper floor of an apartment building, Freebie giving Bean a fashion lesson about why buttons don't fall off of expensive shirts, or Bean grilling his wife, played by Valerie Harper, attempting to catch her in a lie about the suspected affair....these are worth watching the film for and are some of the funniest scenes I've ever seen. Keep in mind, though, this movie is quite violent and there's this fantastic trans-gendered character who seems to offend alot of folks as well.

I'll own this movie as soon as it comes out on DVD and I totally recommend it.

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10 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

A very clever buddy-buddy cop movie that focuses on the interaction between two individuals more than it does the actual story line.

Author: Dr. Richard Welch from United Kingdom
1 June 2005

A fairly atypical off the wall love-hate relationship between two cops as they try to bring down a tongue-in-cheek bad guy. The story centres around the wacky verbal and non-verbal relationship between Alan Arkin and James Caan more than it does the fairly week plot. This is the whole point of the movie - the story line is in fact incidental! The scene where Freebie steals Bean's gun is a classic example of this, as is the button ripping scene earlier in the film. To add to the drama Bean thinks his wife is having an affair and Freebie offers advice...terrific stuff. Perhaps those of you who gave it a poor review should find the time to watch it again - a little more closely - and savour the unique banter between these two excellent actors.

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13 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

A Lost 1970's classic. What a belter.

Author: El-Scotcho from Planet Earth
6 August 2005

The Daddy of 'em all. The original & still the best. Arkin & Caan are on top form as (you saw it here first) mis-matched, loose-cannon cops, who leave a trail of destruction (oh, beautiful destruction!) in their wake. With it being the 70's, the language is somewhat 'colourful', which just adds to Caan's character. Foul-mouthed 70's cops, don't you just love 'em? The stunts are top-notch and spectacular, not to mention highly original and almost comic book (The car pile-up scene & 'that' scene where they crash the car)

Rush's direction is excellent as well. He only made this because he couldn't get 'The Stunt Man' off the ground! (which is another corker) Altogether an very, VERY enjoyable romp (COP-romp, that is) The film was virtually remade as Lethal weapon 4 (not to mention 1, 2 & 3!)

My favourite scene is the ludicrous fight in the restaurant kitchen, where Rush must've just said 'try to destroy everything you can in this scene, boys'. Which they did. Brilliant.

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18 out of 28 people found the following review useful:

Look out San Francisco

Author: judge9090 from Daytona Beach, Florida
26 October 2002

Long before the PC crowd raised their ugly heads, there was Freebie and the Bean(1974), a very watchable and funny comedy about two San Francisco cops who nearly destroy the city in their pursuit of a gangster. Alan Arkin and James Caan are in top form as the constantly bickering partners who will say or do anything to get their man. Entertaining from start to finish.

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14 out of 21 people found the following review useful:

Don't take it so seriously!

Author: Andrew Walton from London, England
29 October 2004

OMG. I can't believe all the chuckleheads banging on about un-pc this and too much violence that. It's a stupid 70's comedy and one of the five best from the 70's - Slapshot, Uptown Saturday Night and Animal House being three others.

You get one choice of your own to add!

I just watched it again today and still enjoyed it as much as when I first saw it in the 70's. Basically it takes the formula for chase gags straight the era of Buster Keaton as such and updates them to the 70's.

I'm still trying to figure out how some people claim that Arkin is a stiff and has no chemistry with Cann. The only better pairing from that period for comedy has been Cosby and Poitier.

I'm also running All In The Family (another celebration of un-PCness) and again, it's dated but I see very few people with the guts to put out that kind of comedy today.

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6 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

how many Ford products does it take to screw in a light comedy?

Author: rhinocerosfive-1 from Los Angeles
8 August 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

For what it is - a cop buddy movie - FREEBIE AND THE BEAN is the paragon. Violent action, high comedy, low humor, more car wrecks than a weekend with the Lohans, and something rare in any genre: two hours of genuine sympathy between grown men. Plus Alex Rocco.

Alan Arkin and James Caan play cops in love, an un-ironic friendship displayed with banter and charisma. Mutual appreciation and respect is palpable in every scene. (This is even more impressive in light of Alan Arkin's public denigration of working with Richard Rush and this particular film-making experience generally.) They are aided by a Laurel & Hardy-meet-Lenny Bruce sensibility in the script and direction, which demands the extent of their abilities at the height of their powers. Gifted comedians both, Arkin and Caan invest the technical stuff - timing, delivery, physicality - with real emotion. It doesn't hurt that Robert Kaufman and Floyd Mutrux have given them wonderful things to say, and wonderful situations in which to say them.

Richard Rush uses a lot of carnival music, and this is not his only evidence of carny taste. He likes to titillate, shock and amaze. That's all fine, as far as entertainment goes, but Rush has aspirations. Throughout his career he's made gestures to the absurd and surreal, with mixed results. His movies often seem giddy, his hand showing on purpose, pawing in self-reflexive gesture. This kind of trapeze act doesn't always work. THE STUNTMAN, for all its many virtues, does not pull off 100% of the tricks up its sleeve. Fellini and Fosse had a surer hand for that sort of detail.

This movie aims lower and succeeds at just about every level, though careening on two wheels. The whole film feels just on the edge of out-of-control: the plot, the story, the action, all strain credibility. The cops kill people, destroy public and private property, bicker, donnybrook; the robbers preen, prance and pratfall. The jokes and the violence push the limits of good taste. And the guy on that trials bike isn't even trying to look like James Caan. But it's all part of the cuckoo world of Me Generation Hollywood, show biz kids drunk with power and roaring for approval. You can almost catch a buzz off all the cocaine blowing around the post-hippie pre-yuppie San Francisco set.

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6 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Make's 'Dirty Harry, Look Clean!

Author: Kieran Green ( from Scotland
26 June 2006

This Is a classic 70's 'Buddy Buddy comedy/Actioneer, that certainly paved the way for '48hr's 'Leathal Weapon' and many more cop flick's 'Freebie And The Bean' star's James Caan, as the macho tough guy 'freebie' Alan Arkin, is the short fused and neurotic 'Bean'

Freebie And The Bean have one goal together and that's to bring down the Obnoxious 'Red Myer's who is the local mafia kingpin, but whilst waiting for the Warrant to Arrest their man,They have to wait until Monday for the Important Warrant to arrive,The pair have to fight off various hit men,

It's down to Freebie And The Bean, to catch the assassins's And try and get their man with hilarious and riotous result's which have some of the finest car stunt's committed to celluloid!,

Freebie And The Bean Also star's Lorreta Swit, Alex(Godfather Rocco) And Valerie Harper AsArkin's wife,There is a mildly amusing subplot which has Arkin Convinced his Ethnic wife is cheating on him with equally hilarious result's!

The film also excel's in the verbal Chit Chat between Arkin And Caan, The film has numerous funny moment's including the scene where Arkin/Caan, whilst in pursuit of the Assasain's Accidentally Skid off the highway and crash in to two old people's apartment wall! That scene has got to be seen to be believed!

The stunt men and women must have got paid a lot for this film, and it show's incidentally the director Richard Rush, later Directed another cult favorite 'The Stunt Man,

Hopefully warner brother's will finally release this although the film like a lot of 70's classic's is overtly not PC(politically Correct) It'll be great to view it in It's 2:35 -1 Aspect Ratio, a commentary track by Arkin And Caan, would make a load of fan's happy,

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Probably Not a Good Recruitment Tool

Author: inspectors71 from The Man-Cave
7 May 2007

It's the antidote for The Laughing Policeman, that grim "police procedural" from 1973; it's Freebie and the Bean, a crude, politically incorrect, and very funny buddy movie for the sophomore in all of us.

Alan Arkin and James Caan play a couple of San Francisco PD Inspectors on the hunt for . . . oh, who cares? The procedural part of the movie doesn't matter. The fun is in Arkin's neurotic and fastidious Bean (you have to forgive the racial slur right from the start) and Caan decked out in a leisure suit and looking for the next "five-finger discount" (hence, the name "Freebie").

It's clearly not a movie for your mom--violent and foul-mouthed, with Arkin accusing his wife of infidelity by demanding to see if she's douched recently, and Caan performing noisy cunnilingus on his girlfriend. It all seems so daring for the 17 year old in 1975, but now, I suspect, I would just cringe and blush at the crudity and concentrate on the hostile chemistry between Arkin and Caan.

After so many serious cop-dramas from the early '70s, FATB came across as something of a breath of different air. In the grand scheme of things, it's not a good movie or a nice one, but there is an entertainment value and a vitality that makes it worth watching.

And don't miss the cop car through the side of the apartment building!

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