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Bud and Lou (1978)

TV Movie  -   -  Biography | Drama  -  15 November 1978 (USA)
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The professional and personal lives of Bud Abbott and Lou Costello are examined.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Anne Costello
Eddie Sherman
Alan Randall
William Tregoe ...
Ted Collins
Danny Dayton ...
Gene Duffy
Art Ergner
Tracy Morgan
Judy Hanson
Edmund Penney
Betty Harford
Glee Smidt
Ronn Wright


The professional and personal lives of Bud Abbott and Lou Costello are examined.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Biography | Drama





Release Date:

15 November 1978 (USA)  »

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Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

A Totally Unworthy Biopic of a Legendary Comedy Team
29 September 2011 | by (California) – See all my reviews

"Bud and Lou" was made at a time when Hollywood was turning out quite a few biopics of Golden Age personalities, both for theatrical release and television, but this one has to rank as one of the worst. It offers a not-terribly accurate overview of the lives of the comics and their partnership, but renders the characters in blacks and whites. In short, Bud Abbott (played with no distinction by Harvey Korman) is depicted as a meek, go-along guy, and Lou Costello (very poorly played by Buddy Hackett) comes off as a mentally-impaired bully. Meanwhile their business manager, Eddie Sherman (played fairly well by Arte Johnson)is depicted as the sympathetic anchor in their lives. While this is a revisionist take on things, it is not unexpected, since Sherman was a major source for the book upon which the movie is based, Bob Thomas's eponymous "Bud and Lou" (and neither the book nor the movie explains why, if Sherman was looking out for their affairs so well, they both got into such trouble with the IRS). The film covers a good twenty years, yet no one ages or changes in any way; whereas the real Bud Abbott aged and changed greatly from their first film to their last, here he looks exactly the same in every scene. What really sinks it, though, even more so than the character and event inaccuracies, are the painfully unfunny recreations of A&C routines by K&H. Whereas the real guys could do bits like "Who's on First" in their sleep, with unerring timing and delivery, Korman and Hackett sound like they're cold reading the bits for the first time, with no sense of timing, meaning, energy, or performing chemistry. In particular, Hackett's vacant, gaping stare and unbelieving line delivery during these classic routines looks more like Lennie asking George about the rabbits than Costello asking Abbott about the first baseman. Some Hollywood figures were so distinctive that anyone attempting to portray them is automatically at a disadvantage. "Bud and Lou" proves that in spades.

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