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Stay Hungry
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Stay Hungry More at IMDbPro »

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28 out of 30 people found the following review useful:

Makes me wanna grow out my hair and buy a plaid blazer

Author: jamesluk from Los Angeles
30 July 2004

As I watched this film last night it occurred to me that it has a certain fun, Altmanesque element of found local color. The shady southern businessmen Jeff Bridges' character is involved with all talk in a hilarious retro jive, "I'm fine as wine!" and sport really sharp looking plaid blazers. Rafelson decides to throw in random things just for sheer fun; a car race, with 70's Monte Carlos shooting through the streets of Birmingham, Alabama and getting air like it's San Francisco, a whole crew of 70's bodybuilders running through the city streets and posing on top of buses. Arnold Schwarzeneggar puts in his only true serious acting turn, although I'm not sure how much it should be considered acting as he's playing his real self; philosophical and shrewd. Sally Field is hot in this movie, there's even a scene where she jumps out of bed in the nude, displaying a great ass. Jeff Bridges puts on his usual display of fine, unselfconscious screen acting. One of the nicest and most refreshing things about this movie is that it unfolds organically; we don't feel an overarching awareness of chugging plot structure like we do at today's movies.

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18 out of 22 people found the following review useful:

Surprisingly good mixture of Comedy and Drama made watchable and entertaining for good hearted performances in this film.

Author: Lucien Lessard from Canada
6 September 2005

A rich young man by the name of Craig Blake (Jeff Bridges), who feels like a guest in his own life and his home after the loss of his parents. He's surrounded by wealthy bores and seductive socialites. Craig decides to do something different in his future, a business deal with some low-life real estate developers. But when he's asked to buy a small Olympic Spa Gym as a part of the deal. Craig finds himself in a world, which he thought it never existed. Craig meets a perky gymnast (Oscar-Winner:Sally Field) and a fiddle-playing, philosophizing Mr. Universe hopeful (Arnold Schwarzenegger). Craig meets these new people that become a part of his life. Craig's new life will be never the way as he expected with his new found friends.

Directed by Bob Rafelson (Black Widow, Blood and Wine, Five Easy Pieces) made an dramatic comedy with happy performances by Bridges, Field and Schwarzenegger make it worthwhile. The film's has good supporting cast like R.G. Armstrong, Robert Englund, Scatman Crothers, Joanna Cassidy and more. This is an extremely underrated comedy. This film has a eccentric mixture of comedy and drama. This film has many fine scenes. This film is based on a novel by Charles Gaines, which he co-wrote the screenplay with the director. If you are a fan of the filmmakers or the stars of this film. You will find this film certainly enjoyable. This is a quirky, funny and a breath of fresh air. Don't miss this 1970's classic. (****/*****).

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15 out of 20 people found the following review useful:

This movie is really a hoot!

Author: rlcsljo from Hollywood, ca
11 February 2002

See Sally Field in her only theatrically released nude scene (and lots of body revealing outfits!). See Ah-nold play the fiddle! See Jeff Bridges clog(country solo dancing). See Joe Spinell play a cracker! See Robert Englund before he became "Freddy" (he is much scarier looking in this film)! Roger Mosley before "Magnum P.I.!". And Fanny Flagg and Helena Kallioniotes from "Five Easy Pieces".

Cast wise it does not get any better than this for a bunch of then relative unknowns!

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11 out of 13 people found the following review useful:

A property buyer's plan to purchase and demolish a gym leads to a life-changing experience.

Author: Steve Pang from London, England
7 August 1998

I stumbled across this movie on the UK's little-watched TV network Channel 5. Initially intrigued by the idea of seeing Arnold Schwarzenegger's screen debut, I was quickly engrossed in this excellent and almost unknown film and the way in which the disparate characters inter-relate over the course of the story. The film manages to appear beguilingly simple and yet it deals with such issues as class, aspiration, loyalty, identity and love.

The way in which all the characters slowly but surely reveal their flaws and weaknesses is quite brilliant. Stand-out scenes include Arnie's bodybuilder character playing the fiddle (yes, the fiddle!) with a bunch of hillbillies out in the woods, Jeff Bridges' drunken jig, and the sight of about a hundred pumped-up bodybuilders running almost naked through rush hour traffic, which for me is one of the classic and most unexpected comic moments in cinema.

I may think more of this film because I 'discovered' it almost by chance, but I will always see it as an underrated classic and I urge everyone to seek it out.

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7 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

I don't want to be comfortable, I want to stay hungry!

Author: sol1218 from brooklyn NY
31 July 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

**SPOILERS*** Strange movie that gives young 28 year old champion body builder Arnold Schwarzegger his first real staring role, if you discount his role as Hercules in the 1970 belly laugher "Hercules in New York", in a major motion picture as what else champion body builder and former Mister Austria Joe Santo.

With both his parents killed in a plane crash Birmingham blue-blood Craig Blake, Jeff Bridges,has reluctantly taken over the family business but is just content to hang out at the Blake Mansion shooting the breeze and partying with the local rich and political connected exclusive country club folks.

The movie revolves around a health & body building spa, The Olympic Spa,in downtown Birmingham owned by the somewhat at first off-the-wall Thor Erickson, R.G Armstrong, who really cracks up at the end of the movie. It turns out that Craig is given the task to buy out the spa for this group of mob-connoted businessmen headed by Jabo, Joe Spineli. Jabo is so determined to get the spa, in order to demolish and build a high-rise office building over it, that he goes so far as hiring a number of local sh*t-kickers, who end up getting the sh*t beaten out of them by the spa workers, to terrorize and have the management give up it's lease on the place to him.

Mary Tate, Sally Field, the receptionist at the spa had been Big Joe Santo's girlfriend for some time but starts to get very friendly with Craig who shows up at the place to buy it out. Craig get's so hung up on the spa and those in it that he decides to become a vital part of it even going so far as paying for the damage inflicted on the spa by Jabo's ineffective and bumbling thugs.

Joe who you would think in having Craig steal his girl Mary Tate, who actually throws herself on him, would drive him to break Craig in two reacts very strangely to having his girlfriend taken away from him. As we soon see Joe is actually forcing a confused Mary Tate on Craig to have sex with him! Craig thinks that Joe is either a pimp or some kind of sex freak who likes to see his girl get it on with other men in order for him to get turned on! It's later that Craig begin to realize that Big Joe's somewhat cuckoo-bird actions has to do with his unorthodox training methods that he invented to get himself into tip top shape. Joe trains himself in refraining from all earthly pleasures like sex and, as he puts it, stays hungry for the upcoming Mr. Universe, or is it World, competition.

The movie starts to get really nuts when Thor is taken into the confidence of Jabo in order to get him to sell his place. The Jabo mobsters give Thor an unlimited amount of drugs, that he snorts, and two hookers for non-stop action in order to soften him up. As Thor is under the influence of drugs and hookers the big Mr. Universe, or is it World, competition takes place. It's there that Thor's "Main Man" Big Joe Santo easily blows away the competition with his muscle man act on the stage to the music of the movie "Exodus". Mary Tate, who just broke up with Craig, unexpectedly shows up at the spa and is attacked by the now wild crazy and totally drugged out Thor who's then confronted by Craig! This leads to one of the most exciting and incredible free for all slug-fasts ever put on film!

With all this insanity going on at the Olympic Spa it's rumored among the muscle man from one of them being on the scene of the Thor/Craig free for all that Thor had taken off with the cash! It's then that all the body builders take off together with the winner of the contest Joe Santo to stop Thor from taking off with the prize money and thus leaving them high and dry. The outraged, in feeling that they were stiffed by Thor, muscle men run with nothing but their skimpy and macroscopic body trunks on in the streets of Birmingham, stopping traffic, headed for the Olympic Spa in order to keep Thor from checking out of town. It's the local police who get to the spa first and take a whacked out on drugs and bloodied, from his dumbbell throwing fight with Craig, Thor into custody and the local hospital for emergency treatment.

The ending has Craig take control of the Olympic Spa and thus keep it out of the hands of the Jabo Mob who were going to put it out of business. Mary Tate Joe Santo and everyone else involved with muscle man building in the movie now know that they have a friend in the city of Birmingham, Craig Blake, who'll see to it that they have a place to work out and build up their muscles.

Worth watching for the oddity of seeing the future Terminator Arnold Schwarzenegger acting, but not at all looking, as meek as a kitten where he doesn't as much as raise his voice, much less his fists, in all the violence that swirls around him! Schwarzenegger actually comes across acting like a peace-loving and non-violent Buddhist Monk in his trying to stop the violence.

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8 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

Weird but kind of fun...

Author: Colin Timberlake from Hollyrock, USA
31 October 2010

This movie doesn't really make a lot of sense...

But Jeff Bridges and Sally Field still give it their all and act pretty well with a silly story.

It's also fun to see a bunch of people (Robert Englund, Arnold, Ed Begley etc) who went on to decent and/or great things.

Plus Sally Field looks pretty hot in the film...

All in all, it is weird but it manages to stay together until the end.

Most of its value is as a super-early Schwarzenegger film and a bit of a glimpse into 70s bodybuilding culture.

And yeah, Sally Field doesn't wear much...

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8 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Attempts to be too many things

Author: caspian1978 from Boston, MA
14 January 2005

For starters, this is not Schwarzenegger's first movie. It is one of his firsts but not the first time he appeared in a movie. Remembered for many things, Staying Hungry is an interesting movie that attempts to be too many things besides a quick comedy. The movie jumps into a drama too often to confuse its audience whether this is just a comedy or a dramatic movie. Although this movie stars Jeff Bridges, he is not the highlight of the movie. The supporting cast, which includes Sally Field, Arnold Schwarzenegger, R.G. Armstrong, Robert Englund, Helena Kallianiota, Ed Begley Jr. and Joe Spinelli not only add to the quality of the movie, but are in fact, the main draw to the story. While Bridges does a good job as the star of the film, he doesn't hold the movie together, the rest of the cast does. By the third act, the movie turns into something completely different than the comedy it opened up to be. A very different, yet interesting movie.

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5 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

A true underrated gem WARNING!!!!!!!!!!!! SPOILERS!!!!!!!!

Author: callanvass
2 November 2004

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

A true underrated gem of a movie that's beautifully made with wonderful performances from all. The story is engrossing from start to finish and i was very surprised by how much i got into it. The only reason i rented it because it had Arnie and a good cast and thought it might be worthwhile and boy was it ever the characters were all likable and they were all developed well. There is no gore what so ever except when Craig gets a big gash in the back of his head other then that not a thing. This is a Drama i have not seen many Drama movies but this was a good one. there a re a few scenes actually that will make you giggle and plus Jeff Bridges and Sally Field have great chemistry together and it was really cool to see Arnie in a early role. The Acting AWESOME!!!!! Jeff Bridges is AMAZING here and gives a terrific performance i LOVED him!. Sally Field is was VERY cute and is a VERY good actress and it shows here good show!. Arnold Schwarzenegger cracked me up he did a heck of a job here in my opinion in his first major role other then Hercules in New York. Robert Englund does not have much to do here but it was also cool to see him in a early role also R.G. Armstrong does well here as the psycho (he is in my opinion). Scatman Crothers does what he has to do very well here. Overall a must see if you can't find it at your local video store (luckily i did) then by all means track it down it's worth it!. ***1/2 out of 5

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7 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Sally Field awfully cute

Author: smatysia ( from Houston
7 December 2004

A somewhat slow-moving film. But that's okay. Jeff bridges played a lot of these quirky characters in the Seventies, and this is a good example. His character (Craig Blake) has little family, but comes into a sort of surrogate one. Arnold Schwarzenegger begins his acting career in this one, and does OK. There is little indication that he would become a huge action star. (or governor) He plays a body-builder (surprise!). This was kind of below the radar screen in those days, so it was an odd subject. Sally Field was so young and cute here, especially since she showed off that nice round bottom. Yes, we really liked you, Sally! Overall, this one is worth a rental, or catching on cable. Grade: C

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

A engaging trip for neo-classic movie fans

Author: StacyOnEarth from United States
13 May 2010

Short and simple, "Stay Hungry" kept my attention - that is, until the hokey, silly and very disappointing ending.

But up to that point, I was a pure movie fan: watching a young, hot- looking Jeff Bridges as country-club son, looking for his way after losing his parents, I was fascinated as I compared him to the 2010 Oscar Winner for "Crazy Heart." Catching Sally Field in one of her earliest film roles as an emotionally labile gym employee, I was impressed and even blushed a little during a brief nude scene, as I thought of the matriarch currently staring in ABC's "Brothers and Sisters." Roger E. Mosley (T.C. from "Magnum, P.I.") was funny in a supporting role; A young Robert Englund reminded me that he was an actor before he was Freddy Kruger; and a host of other actors that I only know from old TV shows (Fannie Flagg, Ed Begley, Jr. and Joanna Cassidy) put me in trivia heaven.

But it was Ah-nold...Arnold Schwarzenegger who truly surprised me, playing an attractive, low-key, approachable role as an aspiring body builder. There was nothing over-the-top or kitchy about his performance, and I enjoyed every scene he was in. If you can forgive the hokey ending (which made me think of a cheesy Gay Pride parade, although I'm sure that was unintentional), then you can really enjoy this movie.

If you don't enjoy catching actors from the 80's in their early years, might I suggest you be very bored, busy with other household activities and catching it on cable first - or else you'll just hate yourself afterward and wish for that time back.

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