6.7/10
5,731
99 user 23 critic

Looking for Mr. Goodbar (1977)

A dedicated schoolteacher spends her nights cruising bars, looking for abusive men with whom she can engage in progressively violent sexual encounters.

Director:

Writers:

(based on the novel by), (written for the screen by)
Reviews
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Mrs. Dunn
Laurie Prange ...
Brigid
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Barney
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Black Cat
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George
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Cap Jackson
Marilyn Coleman ...
Mrs. Jackson
Carole Mallory ...
Marvella
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Storyline

Theresa is a successful teacher of deaf children during the day but after a short unhappy affair starts to spend her nights cruising bars. Her craving first for sex but later also for drugs leads into increasingly demeaning and dangerous situations at odds with her daytime commitment to her children. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

teacher | bar | scoliosis | deaf | drugs | See All (98) »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

13 March 1978 (Sweden)  »

Also Known As:

Buscando a Mr. Goodbar  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,837,976, 23 October 1977, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$16,900,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(still photograph montages)| (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of two feature films that actress Diane Keaton starred in in 1977. The other film was Annie Hall (1977) for which Keaton won the Best Actress Academy Award. Keaton was not Oscar nominated for her performance in Looking for Mr. Goodbar (1977). The movie did receive two Oscar noms though, for Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Tuesday Weld) and Best Cinematography (William A. Fraker) but failed to win either. See more »

Goofs

Despite ostensibly being set in New York City, in the shot right before Theresa fantasizes about running into the street so Martin will hit her with his car, palm trees can clearly be seen reflected in the plate glass store window behind her. See more »

Quotes

Man in bar: Me, queer! Jesus, I'm a married man, I've got 2 kids and a very expensive mistress. I'm an animal.
Theresa: That's why you go to gay bars ?
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Connections

Referenced in Frankie and Johnny (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

Back Stabbers
(1972)
Written by Leon Huff (uncredited), Gene McFadden (uncredited), John Whitehead (uncredited)
Performed by The O'Jays
Courtesy of CBS Records
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User Reviews

Relentlessly depressing.
1 October 2008 | by See all my reviews

Probably the biggest problem with this movie – other than its insistence that all men are either worthless sexual predators or pathetic, near-impotent panderers – is the fact that it has aged so badly. In an age when a small army of women under 30 seem hell-bent on doing all they can to turn their livers and septums to mush in as short a time as possible, Diane Keaton's Theresa Dunn no longer comes across as somebody out of the ordinary.

Diane Keaton gives a performance that is by turns both sensitive and irritating as her character revolves around her schizophrenic lifestyle. As a child, Dunn was encased in plaster, a result of scoliosis, and it seems that this is what compels her to take so many risks in her effort to find the kind of freedom she was denied as a kid – both by her spell in traction and by a harsh, overbearing Catholic upbringing. She is full of love, as indicated by her relationship with the deaf children she teaches, but gives it in all the wrong ways, leading to encounters with equally warped characters. One of these is Richard Gere in the role that first brought him to Hollywood's attention and which serves as a kind of template for the role of Jesse in Jim McBride's ill-fated remake of Breathless. The other is Tom Berenger, a borderline psychopath tortured by his own homosexuality. Both are characters no right-thinking adult would want to get involved with, but Keaton's self-destructive personality draws her to them, and while you want her to break free from her sleazy night-life a part of you can't help thinking she's going to get what she deserves.

The problem with Dunn is that she engages the viewers' sympathy in her straight persona then keeps pushing them away with her self-indulgent excesses and sometimes callous treatment of those who love her most. Combined with the relentlessly depressing atmosphere of impending tragedy that hangs over the entire film, this makes Looking for Mr. Goodbar a difficult film to enjoy (or even watch) and one to which many people wouldn't wish to return.


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