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Lenny (1974)

7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 9,485 users  
Reviews: 55 user | 45 critic

The story of acerbic 1960s comic Lenny Bruce, whose groundbreaking, no-holds-barred style and social commentary was often deemed by the Establishment as too obscene for the public.

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Title: Lenny (1974)

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Nominated for 6 Oscars. Another 8 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Jan Miner ...
Stanley Beck ...
Frankie Man ...
Rashel Novikoff ...
Gary Morton ...
Guy Rennie ...
Michele Yonge ...
Kathryn Witt ...
Girl (as Kathie Witt)
Monroe Myers ...
John DiSanti ...
Mickey Gatlin ...
Martin Begley ...
Mark Harris ...
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Storyline

Interview-style biography of controversial and pioneering stand-up comedian Lenny Bruce. The film traces Bruce from his beginnings as a Catskills comic to his later underground popularity based on his anti-establishment politics and his scatological humor. Written by Scott Renshaw <as.idc@forsythe.stanford.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Lenny's Time Has Finally Come!


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

10 November 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Lenny Bruce  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Gross:

SEK 1,021,233 (Sweden)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The one-take master shot scene of Lenny doing his act in a raincoat near the end of the film came from an actual tape recorded from a show he did that was sent to Dustin Hoffman by a student who saw the show. Lenny's exact words in the scene on stage are verbatim from the tape of his show. See more »

Goofs

During the movie's opening monologue, Lenny says that it's 1964 and then references the MDA Telethon, which debuted in 1966. See more »

Quotes

Lenny Bruce: Did you know that Eleanor Roosevelt gave Lou Gehrig the clap?
See more »

Connections

References Citizen Kane (1941) See more »

Soundtracks

Tempus Fugit
by Miles Davis
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Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Freedom Does Not Always Work.
10 March 2003 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The life of late stand-up comedian Lenny Bruce (played by Oscar-nominee Dustin Hoffman) is the focus of "Lenny", a dark and disturbing staircase of horrors from director Bob Fosse (Oscar-nominated). In the late-1950s and early-1960s the titled character defied convention by getting in front of nightclub crowds and saying anything and everything that was on his mind. He cursed profusely, talked about the U.S. government, made fun of taboo subjects (homosexuality, drug use, etc.) and basically upset every group and racial minority you can think of. Through the film Hoffman has strange views on every topic that dominated the time period and marries a club stripper (Valerie Perrine in her Oscar-nominated role) that has an intense drug abuse problem herself. The film is told in stunning flashbacks that are displayed in a documentary style by those who knew the comedian best (Lenny Bruce apparently overdosed on drugs intentionally to kill himself). Filmed entirely in black-and-white, "Lenny" is a terrifying story about how freedom is not always an option in certain circles. The film is full of intense sexual situations, drug abuse and constant adult language. Younger audiences have no business viewing this production, but all those of a mature age should give "Lenny" a try. The film stands very strong with the other big films of 1974 ("The Godfather, Part II" and "Chinatown" most notably). 5 stars out of 5.


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