Compelling character study, revolving around Jack Flowers (Ben Gazzara), an American hustler trying to make his fortune in 1970s Singapore in small time pimping. He dreams of building a ... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 win. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
James Villiers ...
Frogget
...
Yardley
...
Smale
Mark Kingston ...
Yates
...
Mrs. Yates
Monika Subramaniam ...
Monika
Judy Lim ...
Judy
...
Senator
...
Eddie Schuman
Joseph Noël ...
Gopi
Kian Bee Ong ...
Hing
Yan Meng Tan ...
Little Hing
Andrew Chua ...
Andrew
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Storyline

Compelling character study, revolving around Jack Flowers (Ben Gazzara), an American hustler trying to make his fortune in 1970s Singapore in small time pimping. He dreams of building a fortune by running a brothel himself and returning to the States to lead a life of luxury. Savvy but not unsavory he strikes up a friendship with William Leigh (Denholm Elliot), a genial and decent auditor who travels to Singapore every year. Ultimately, the background of the Vietnam War comes into the picture as Jack is offered the opportunity by the CIA to run a brothel for the R&R activities of U.S. soldiers on leave in Singapore. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"People make love for so many crazy reasons-- why shouldn't money be one of them?" - The Gospel According To Saint Jack

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

5 December 1979 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Jack el magnífico  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to Peter Bogdanovich in his collaborative book "This is Orson Welles", Bogdanovich wanted Welles to direct this film as a comeback for his mentor, and Welles was set to do so, but then, with some pressure from the studio, and his steady girlfriend Cybill Shepard, Bogdanovich ended up directing it himself. This led to a falling-out between the two friends, Bogdanovich and Welles, that wasn't completely resolved for nearly a decade, shortly before Welles's death. See more »

Quotes

Jack Flowers: Now, the Chinese, they go for Australian girls, y'know, big-boned. The Germans usually go for Tamils. The British don't give a damn as long as they're young and boyish, isn't that right, Colonel?
Col. Gunstone: Indubitably.
Jack Flowers: Well the Americans, they do a lot of hugging-up in taxis, y'know. When they go home they write letters. Girls are always after me to help them answer 'em.
See more »

Crazy Credits

We thank the people of the Republic of Singapore, on whose island this picture was filmed. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Corman's World: Exploits of a Hollywood Rebel (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

I Ain't Gonna Give Nobody None of My Jelly Roll
Written by Clarence Williams and Spencer Williams
Sung by Louis Armstrong
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User Reviews

 
People make love for all sorts of crazy reasons ....
8 August 2006 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Singapore 1973 – Jack Flowers (Gazzara) a worldworn drifter, has finally found his niche. He is a small-time pimp, eking out a living arranging liaisons for jaded ex-pats and burned-out GIs. Everybody knows Jack and everyone likes him – a situation that changes rapidly when he decides to open his own house of ill repute.

Saint Jack is Peter Bogdanovich's most accomplished film. Made long after his Hollywood star had waned it is a low-key, character driven piece full of memorable scenes and performances. The Singapore it depicts is long gone, buried under acres of concrete and glass. The world Jack Flowers' inhabits is old school orient - sampans, alleyways, bustling markets and street hustlers. Denholm Elliot excels as the bemused, vaguely melancholy accountant Jack takes under his wing. Rodney Bewes and Joss Ackland do memorable turns as aimlessly Englishmen abroad. Former James Bond George Lazenby puts in an appearance as a slimy US senator and director Bogdanovich plays a CIA operative.

For a movie produced by Roger Corman and Hugh Hefner it's far from the exploitation fare its subject matter might suggest. Photographed by the great Robby Muller and based on a novel by Paul Theroux it's well worth a look. 8/10

**Also recommended for fans of this movie is "Kinda Hot: The Making of Saint Jack in Singapore" by Ben Slater (ISBN: 9812610693) - a fascinating behind-the-scenes look at the making of the film.


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