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Bye Bye Monkey (1978)
"Ciao maschio" (original title)

6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 726 users  
Reviews: 6 user | 15 critic

A man walking on the beach near New York City finds the corpse of King Kong. He also finds Kong's orphaned son, and takes it to a friend who lives in the city, and they decide to raise it.

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Title: Bye Bye Monkey (1978)

Bye Bye Monkey (1978) on IMDb 6.5/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Gerard Lafayette
...
Luigi Nocello
...
Andreas Flaxman
...
Mrs. Toland
Abigail Clayton ...
Angelica (as Gail Lawrence)
Stefania Casini ...
Feminist Actress
Francesca De Sapio
...
Feminist Actress
Avon Long ...
Miko
Nathalie Bernart
Sandra Monteleoni
Enrico Blasi
Anselma Dell'Ollo
Luciano Pallocchia
Achille Antonaglia
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Storyline

Immigrants Luigi and Lafayette work for Andreas Flaxman at his wax museum in Lower Manhattan. Luigi, an asthmatic middle-aged romantic, works as an artist/sculptor while the Lafayette functions as a jack-of-all trades for Flaxman, who is obsessed with Ancient Rome, a preoccupation that most of his exhibits reflect. Lafayette lives in a rat-infested basement some blocks away and carries a whistle with to scare the rodents, which seem to be endemic to the area. He also works as a stagehand for a feminist theater group in their Off-off Broadway theater where he suffers their sexist abuses including being forced to wear a leotard. Angelica, one of the beautiful actresses in the troupe is attracted to him, and they begin a relationship. At the same time Luigi comes across the 50 foot model of King Kong in a Hudson River landfill, apparently discarded after the 1976 movie version of "King Kong." There he finds an orphaned baby chimpanzee which he takes to be the giant simian's son. Allergic... Written by duke1029@aol.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


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Details

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Release Date:

24 February 1978 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Bye Bye Monkey  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.75 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Marco Ferreri's first English language film. See more »

Goofs

The baby chimp is assumed to be the son of King Kong. Disregarding the size difference, it would be impossible for a gorilla to father a chimpanzee. See more »

Quotes

Gerard Lafayette: You put Nixon's head upon Nero's body. I saw up there.
Andreas Flaxman: There is history and there is compromise. Sometimes the two flow together, and we have what is called historical compromise.
See more »

Connections

References Cleopatra (1963) See more »

Soundtracks

Rockabye Baby
(uncredited)
Traditional English nursery rhyme (first recorded in 1765)
Sung by Geraldine Fitzgerald to the monkey
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User Reviews

Gerard Depardieu And A Monkey
29 April 2006 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

Marco Ferreri directed some of the most unusual films of the 1970s - from the castration love story "La Derniere Femme", to the gluttony fuelled orgy of "La Grande Bouffe". Bye Bye Monkey might not match those films for quality or shock value, but it most definitely surpasses them in the weirdness stakes.

Bye Bye Monkey is a rare exercise in cinematic existentialism that does not drown in its own pretence. In fact, the film's greatest achievement is that it somehow manages to be entertaining despite having a plot which basically involves Gerard Depardieu walking around with a monkey. There are, of course, detours from this central premise and they are just as perplexing. Ferreri offers a Roman wax museum subplot, feminist dancers interested in experiencing rape, a massive gorilla corpse/sculpture and a love scene between a young Depardieu and a then 65 year old Geraldine Fitzgerald. Did I mention that Gerard Depardieu incessantly blows a whistle throughout the film?

I'm really not sure what the film's deeper meaning is intended to be, assuming that it has one at all. Bye Bye Monkey contains so many ideas and passes comment on so many issues that I gave up trying to interpret them all. However, Ferreri's favourite theme of emasculation is unmissable in everything from the dancer rapists, to Luigi's sexual frustration and the birth registrar's comments on dressing Cornelius in girl's clothing. The film is never weighed down by its philosophy and there is just as much enjoyment to be had from the surreal imagery as from the film's ambiguous subtext.

Gerard Depardieu was doing his best work in the 1970s and he turns in another muscular performance as Lafayette. I can not imagine another major actor who would accept this role in the first place, let alone approach it with the conviction that Gerard does. Marcello Mastroianni is also great as Luigi, as is Geraldine Fitzgerald in her most controversial role. However, it is James Coco who almost manages to steal the show with his outrageously over the top performance as Mr Flaxman. As good as the actors are, this remains Ferreri's show and his direction is as stylish as ever.

Bye Bye Monkey is a real oddity of the 1970s. Ferreri was a truly unique director and this may be his most individual, if not most convincing, work.


20 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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