Foul Play (1978) Poster


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"The Girl Who Knew Too Much"
moonspinner555 November 2005
Goldie Hawn gives a delicious comic performance as a San Francisco librarian who's been living like a hermit, encouraged by a friend to get out there and shake her pom-poms; instead, she becomes indirectly involved with a pack of nefarious criminals who plan to assassinate the Pope (!) on his visit to the Opera House. The picture has some real ringers (Dudley Moore and his apartment full of sex toys, two little old ladies playing Dirty Scrabble), but Hawn is very appealing, especially while sitting in a movie theater with her black-rimmed glasses watching a film-noir about a detective and a Chinese sailor. Chevy Chase, in his debut as a leading man following his departure from "Saturday Night Live", plays the lovestruck cop on the case and he's very green; some of his lines fall flat (especially a tasteless bit about a government official wearing make-up), however his love scenes with Goldie are low-keyed and sweet. The bungled car-chase finale is a complete waste, yet the movie is buoyed by a terrific supporting cast, including funny Billy Barty, handsome Brian Dennehy (who gets lost in the action), scene-stealing Burgess Meredith and kinky, salacious Rachel Roberts (as "Delia Darrow"). A fitfully fun time. *** from ****
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A comedy thriller that comes out a winner
Bjorn (ODDBear)19 October 2004
Cute looking Hawn gets mixed up in a big conspiracy and detective Chase is assigned to the case.

This Hitchcockian comedy thriller is a truly wonderful little film. It's cleverly written, expertly acted by the entire ensemble, suspenseful and outrageously funny when it wants to be. This happens to be one of the few movies that can successfully balance comedy and suspense and come out a winner.

The plot isn't easily spotted and old Hitchcock's influence are apparent, but the film feels completely original. Hawn is just wonderful here, Chase in his best ever role but Dudley Moore steals the show as a...well, likable pervert. The Bee Gees song Stayin' Alive will probably best be remembered here, rather than in Saturday Night Fever. You'll know when you see it.

Highly recommended.
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Chevy-Hawn magic
bodhisattva1322 December 2002
I saw this film when I was nine years old. And I loved it. From the opening shot of Goldie Hawn's VW bug driving along to Barry Manilow's "Ready to Take a Chance Again" to the Pope tapping his foot to "Three Little Maids From School Are We," this movie is pure entertainment. What makes it so funny is it seems an exercise in lateral thinking. A snake that eats cigarettes? An albino hit man? Billy Barty? I love the music in this film and watching Dudley Moore sing "I feel the earth move under my feet" ... while he tries to seduce Hawn, who was the very model of wholesome cuteness in the '70s and '80s. Her pairing with Chase gave us some of the funniest shows of the era. (I also enjoy "Seems Like Old Times.") The only downside to this film - if you see it when you're an impressionable child, you'll always be wondering if someone will stab you through the theater seat. Argh!
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Foul Play is good clean fun
stubotnyc5 December 2004
The movies served as my babysitter in the late seventies, and watching the new DVD release of Foul Play bought back memories of good times, and the very well done DVD transfer was a joy to watch and listen to.

I can't think of a better movie that puts the late seventies in to perspective; the comedy is simple, the relationships between the characters is lighthearted; heck, even funnier to me is Chevy's offering of a 'joint' to goldie, then saying, "you know they say the cops have the best dope", an ironic pre "war on drugs" line when people had perspective on such things.

The acting is really quite good, Chevy looks great as a young man, and Goldie is absolutely stunning. The cinematography is well done, crisp and clear lighting with that seventies film stock quality that seems better in many ways than the heavily digitally processed look of today. It's refreshing to see, AND to hear- the 5.1 surround was surprisingly good, very clear, and well thought out.

If you are like me, and remember seeing this movie in the late seventies, and would like a treat, rent or buy Foul Play on DVD, a true pleasure indeed.
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*****I simply adore this movie, and never tire of revisiting it!*****
Gwendylan29 July 2006
I've lost track of how many times I've seen this gem.. but at least 2 or 3.. er, well, okay, 4 or 5 times every year!

Now, my 10 Stars aside, if you're looking for an intellectually stimulating, sprawling epic, enriching to mind, body and soul, forget it!

...Ahh, but if you're looking for an endlessly entertaining, fun movie with a terrific cast throughout, and phenomenally choreographed hijinks, scene after scene.. a movie that's a kaleidescope of cinematic deliciousness from one end of the comedic spectrum to the other!--Everything from slapstick spoofs on classic gangster films, with a bit of suspense; some high-karate; an unbeatable car-chase scene, to a little old-fashioned romance; some actually factual tidbits thrown in! And my-oh-my, would you believe, even some classic opera to boot!--THEN HEY! THIS MOVIE is for YOU!!

It's a screeeam!! Not to mention some of the best work Chevy Chase and Goldie Hawn have ever done, together OR separately! In addition, if you're a Bee Gee's and/or Barry Manilow fan, well, hurry up and RENT it! BUY it!! SEE IT!!!

It has two of the sweetest, most perfectly done kissing scenes of any movie, romantic or otherwise, I've ever seen before or since. NO slimy "suck-face" grossness HERE! So tasteful, so romantic, so rare~ The chemistry between these two is so magical~ Right up there with Bogie and Bacall! you could just reach out and TOUCH it.. Sheer MAGIC!

There are countless class-acts here. I love Marilyn Sokol in ANYthing she does.. Dudley Moore.. such comic genius, Billy Barty, Burgess Meredith! The two little ol' ladies, {not sure of their names}, playing Scra.. well, you'll see! Hilarious!! Everybody is just SUPER! The whole thing is just so well orchestrated!

I've loved nearly everything Chevy and Goldie, {who needs their last names?}, have done, {with the exception of "..Vegas Vacation", and the updated "The Out-of-Towners"..eeeshh!} ..But this, this priceless jewel of wonderful silliness takes the cake!

Years from now, when all are watching the 'classic' "Titanic" of the '90's, I'll be in my easy chair crankin' up the old video machine, watching MY classic "Foul Play", relishing every millionth-time-watched moment!:)
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Fear, then laughter, then fear again, only to laugh so hard it hurts.
cynthia-flynn7 May 2010
From the beginning when Chevy Chase flirts with Goldie Hawn you get the idea it is going to be offbeat but nothing prepares you for the gems in this movie. The friends, the good guys, the bad guys, even a snake are not always who they seem to be. The target even more of a surprise in a movie that includes Japanese tourists, an albino, a dwarf, a bible salesman, an orchestra conductor, the pope, and the most straight laced librarian in San Francisco. Chevy Chase is the copy you expect from a movie set in San Francisco but nothing else is.

Never have I seen anything like the scene between Ms. Roberts and Mr. Meredith. But there is still a car chase and an opera with a final scene more dramatic than you realize until the sound of one man clapping makes you laugh again and realize how well this whole thing was put together. Take a second curtain call at the end. You all deserve it.
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One of the best comedies of the seventies!
bobwht22 December 2006
Goldie Hawn is gorgeous as always. Dudley Moore is unforgettable as the sex mad Englishman and a very young Chevy Chase is terrific as the handsome cop. A very funny comedy with well chosen music from Gilbert and Sullivan and Barry Manilow. Look out for the two old ladies playing Scrabble......hilarious. The plot revolves around Goldie and a gang of assassins who get her and the cops very confused and results in a great many hilarious moments and a great deal of action. The film is, in some places, reminiscent of the slapstick comedies of the 30's and 40's and the car chase is similar to the many car chases that have been filmed on the streets of San Francisco e.g. Bullitt and What's Up Doc? Highly recommended.
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Gloria Mundy, I love you!
Garry Abbott (Gazman01)21 September 2002
Right, just for a change, I have decided to review a film that I didn't originally see on my Mum and Dad's old Phillips V2000 Video player. Instead, I saw this one on the first weekend (a Saturday to be precise), when it went on general release throughout the U.k's Cinema's, and, once again, it left it's mark.

You see, being around eleven years old, at that time, with certain manly feelings (no doubt, you get my drift) beginning to arise (no pun intended), I found myself falling bang, head over heals in love/lust with Goldie Hawn (after seeing her for the first time in this film).

She was then, still is, and, no doubt, always will be, a BABE! Added to which, she's not a bad Actress, either!

For me, 1978 was an awesome year, especially where Films are concerned. I mean, so far I have taken the time to review just three films for the IMDB (The Silent Partner, The Fury, and this one), and all three were released during this year.

Strange how puberty can have such an effect on a young man's out-look on life, isn't it?

Anyway, this aside, what do I actually think of the Film itself?


It's funny, intense, exciting... In short, I find it a pure joy to watch, and some! In fact, it's pure class (of a 1970's style).

Most notable, aside from Chase and Hawn that is, are Dudley Moore's excellent portrayal of an English Swinger in 1970's San Francisco (Stanley Tibbets); Billy Barty's unfortunate J.J.MacKuan (the scene where he gets seven shades beaten out of him by Hawn's Gloria, after she mistakes him for someone else, is, without a doubt, one of the funniest ever put to film); the old Japanese couple in the back seat of the Limo, as Chase and Hawn race to get to the Opera house; and not forgetting the two old ladies, playing a very dodgy game of Scrabble in their Apartment.

I could go on for hours about this film, but I wont. Instead, I'll just say do what ever you need to, to see it. Beg, borrow, steal (Uh... perhaps you shouldn't go that far) a copy if you have to! But see it, you must!

Trust me, you wont regret doing so, and remember...

Beware the Dwarf!!!
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"The bad guys are after your ass. It's my job to get there first."
dennisayers20 January 2001
Perky librarian Gloria Mundy (Hawn) has stumbled on to a plot to assassinate the pope. Now she has an albino, a dwarf and a scarfaced killer "after her ass." She turns to Det. Tony Carlson (Chase) and together they crack the case. The plot, including the obligatory car chase through the streets of San Francisco, is totally by the numbers, but this movie has a lot of minor delights. Witty dialog and a brilliant supporting cast help a lot. As for the leads, Hawn was in her prime. Even in the bad seventies makeup, hairdos and clothes she is adorable. Chevy Chase doesn't have a lot to do, as the script gives most of the heroic moments to Hawn. Even so, he turns out to be quite a charmer. I'd forgotten that, back when he was young and handsome, his bumbling schtick actually worked. The best part of seeing Foul Play now is spotting the multitude of 70's anachronisms. Just a few that stand out: Gloria thinks nothing of picking up a hitchhiker. She's a non-smoker but lets someone light up in her car. Chevy Chase's character, a police detective, smokes a joint now and then. Ah, those were the days. If this movie appeals to you, I would strongly suggest "Silver Streak" (1976), another comedy/romance/thriller also written by Colin Higgins. These two films share a similar sensibility, and I'd love to see them at a revival house as a double feature.
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chessiemann21 July 2004
My favorite movie of all time. I just love it. Why isn't it on DVD as I've worn out a few VHS Tapes. I first ran this movie while managing a theater in Charleston West Virginia when it was first released and have never tired of it. The acting is very competent and the actors and actresses themselves are used to their fullest. Especially Dudley Moore who plays a great part as only he could. Actually 'Whitey Jackson' is also very competent although I can't recall anything else he acted in. The direction and music is top notch as are the costumes. I just loved the part with the two Japanese tourists. The only criticism that I would have is that the scene in the Italian Restaurant is not well done, but the rest of the movie shines. I also thought the scene in the movie theater with Chuck McCann was inspired and was the scene with the two older ladies playing Scrabble. Truly inspired. But I just wish it would come out on DVD.
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