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The World's Greatest Lover (1977)

5.8
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Ratings: 5.8/10 from 1,355 users  
Reviews: 24 user | 9 critic

A neurotic baker travels to Hollywood to attend a talent search for an actor to rival the great Valentino. Although not an actor, through blind luck he succeeds - to a certain degree!

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Rudy Hickman
...
Annie Hickman
...
Adolph Zitz
Fritz Feld ...
Tomaso Abalone
Mark Silberman ...
Cousin Buddy
Robert Ball ...
Bald Man (as Robert E. Ball)
Randolph Dobbs ...
Yes Man #1
Sandy Rovetta ...
Woman Dancer
Hannah Dean ...
Maid
Rita Conde ...
Whore #1
...
Whore #2
Teda Bracci ...
Whore #3
Elaine Everett ...
Whore #4
Gustaf Unger ...
Producer
Harry Gold ...
Freddie the Runner
Edit

Storyline

In the early 1920s Hollywood, Adolph Zitz, who surrounds himself with yes men, wants his movie studio, Rainbow, to be the greatest in town by making a movie called the "World's Greatest Lover" and finding that next star to outshine Rudolph Valentino as the renowned screen lover of his time. Mild mannered and somewhat hapless Rudy Hickman dreams of being such a movie star, he daydreaming about it so much that he is unable to hold onto his bakery jobs. With his supportive but highly hysterical wife Annie Hickman by his side, Rudy, using the stage name Rudy Valentine, pulls up stakes from Milwaukee and heads to Hollywood to try out for that part. He ends up getting a screen test like the thousands of other hopefuls flooding Hollywood for the chance. Annie, who loves the movies herself but who is naive from not having had much exposure to the world, has ulterior motives for going to Hollywood. Both Annie's Hollywood mission and Valentino himself will affect what happens to Rudy in ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Go ahead - laugh!

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

13 February 1978 (Denmark)  »

Also Known As:

O Maior Amante do Mundo  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The name of the new film at Rainbow Studios was "The World's Greatest Lover". As such, the film within a film has the same title as the film itself. See more »

Goofs

The "audition" record that Rudy listens to is obviously an LP running at 33 1/3 rpm. LPs would not be invented until the late 1940s. See more »

Quotes

Annie Hickman: Rudy, what are we gonna do? They think you're a famous movie star. We can't pay for this. Oh, my god! Rudy, Rudy, did you see the bathroom? Rudy, there's seven towels in the bathroom. Rudy, Rudy, we can't afford this.
Rudy Valentine: Don't talk about money.
Annie Hickman: But, Rudy, we only have...
Rudy Valentine: My soul is on fire! Don't talk to me about money!
See more »

Crazy Credits

There is a credit to Frederico Fellini, who was not on the picture, 'for encouragement at the right time'. See more »

Connections

Featured in TMZ on TV: Episode dated 4 October 2014 (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Fascination
(uncredited)
Written by F.D. Marchetti
Instrumental version played on the violin in Valentino's tent and at the end
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Gene Wilder's tragi-slapstick masterpiece
28 May 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This movie studies a handful of themes, among them: romantic problems, issues of the individual versus conformity, and beauty versus mediocrity. It is set during the Hollywood silent movie days, when Rudolph Valentino was the rage. Wilder plays the lead role, the husband of a Valentino fan, who has to muster up the sexy man in himself in order to save the day. The sets are lush, Carol Kane is gorgeous, Wilder gives one of his most heartbreaking performances, and Harry Nilsson devotes his song "Ain't it kind of wonderful" to the soundtrack. Very ambitious, especially considering that Wilder wrote, directed and produced it.

Yes, it's true some of the gags are dated or overdone, but there are other things to enjoy. It's in the same league as Woody Allen's early slapstick comedies, like "Sleeper" and "Play it again, Sam", as well as the Mel Brooks' oeuvre.


3 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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