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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: The problem is we always expect women to be a combination sunday school teacher, and $500-a-night hooker!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Precious Images (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

It Never Entered My Mind
by Miles Davis
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Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A great performance unknown to many today
8 March 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I saw this film during it's initial release in the theaters but have only seen it twice since then. It didn't get much of a TV life. Dustin Hoffman is stellar as social commentary/satirist/observationalist/blue language comic Lenny Bruce. He was nominated for Best Actor for the 1974 Academy Award for his role but lost out to Art Carney for Harry and Tonto. Veteran actor Albert Finney was also nominated that year but Carney won on sentiment and Hoffman lost out when he and fellow nominees Jack Nicholson for Chinatown and Al Pacino for Godfather II split the vote which led to Carney's win. Valerie Perrine in her only Oscar nomination of her career was up for Best Actress. Lenny was up for most of the major awards including Best Picture, Best Director for Bob Fosse. It was also nominated for Best Screenplay and Cinematography but came up empty in all six nominations. Hoffman had just come off playing another biographical figure of Louis Dega in Pappion and would be Carl Bernstein in his his next film All the President's Men. Lenny Bruce had only been dead for eight years when Hoffman portrayed him on the big screen so much of the audience knew Bruce fairly fresh in their memories so to portray a contemporary figure of Bruce's genius and legend was not an easy role for Hoffman to step into but his portrayal of the doomed and controversial comic is compelling. Fosse, known for his choreography which is still being used in films like Chicago years after his death only directed five theatrical films and three of those were musicals in Sweet Charity, Caberet and All That Jazz so Lenny would be the first of only two non-musicals he would direct, both biographies, Lenny and Star 80. I don't think as a film this had enough to be a best picture but Hoffman was deserved of his best actor nomination and arguably should have won the Oscar for it. I would give this an 8.5 out of 10 and recommend it.


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