7.6/10
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The Absent-Minded Waiter (1977)

Bernie Cates requests the services of the most absent-minded waiter he's ever seen, who pours water before setting the glasses, endlessly repeats questions, brings wrong orders, and ruins everything- but the bill.

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Steven
...
...
Susan Cates
Ivor Barry ...
Carl
...
Naomi
Peter Elbling ...
Cook #1
Kurt Taylor ...
Cook
Beans Morocco ...
Cook (as Dan Barrows)
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Storyline

Bernie Cates requests the services of the most absent-minded waiter he's ever seen, who pours water before setting the glasses, endlessly repeats questions, brings wrong orders, and ruins everything- but the bill.

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Genres:

Comedy | Short

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Release Date:

20 June 1980 (West Germany)  »

Also Known As:

Den fjollede tjener  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Steve Martin reprises the waiter role in The Muppet Movie. See more »

Quotes

Steven, The Waiter: All right, here's your drink order. One-two-three-four-five-six martinis, and your lard omelet.
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Connections

Edited into Homage to Steve (1986) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Predictable situations and Underutilized situations make the Absent Minded Waiter an Average Comedy
3 November 2012 | by (India) – See all my reviews

This 7 minute short reminded me of Pixar's Oscar winning Ratatouille, which too had a clumsy waiter named Linguini who turned out to be the only heir of the restaurant's dead owner. Well, Steve Martin is no one's heir in this skit and therefore I really wondered how a restaurant managed to retain his services in spite of his maladroitness. Would it not have been much funnier had his character been the restaurant owner's son or relative? I think I would have.

The Absent Minded Waiter is not hard to follow: it is a pretty simply sketch displaying an absent minded waiter's complete idiosyncrasy in dealing with the restaurant patrons. If Steven (played by Martin) were your waiter, you would be really unlucky till he gets your bill. The catch is that if you are able to endure him till he gets your bill, you may get really lucky.

There are some funny moments here, such as Steven missing to light Susan Cates' cigar each time he passes her. But it would have been funnier to add some more situations: such as Steven being the boss' relative or Steven realizing his own mistakes yet repeating them or having the other waiters keep an eye on Steven. The sketch could have had some shining double entendre gags between Steven and bombshell Susan's character. Sadly, there are no such situations and we only get a few chuckles throughout.

The Absent Minded Waiter is a bit of a miss; replace Steve Martin with Rowan Atkinson of Mr. Bean fame and this would have been a gem of a comedy.

Verdict: Predictable situations and Underutilized situations Make The Absent Minded Waiter An Average Comedy


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