6.1/10
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Private Benjamin (1980)

R | | Comedy, War | 10 October 1980 (USA)
A sheltered young high society woman joins the United States Army on a whim and finds herself in a more difficult situation than she ever expected.

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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
Teddy Benjamin
...
Harriet Benjamin
...
Pvt. Mary Lou Glass
...
1st Sgt. Jim Ballard
...
Yale Goodman
...
Rabbi
Estelle Marlov ...
Vocalist at Wedding
Everett Covin ...
Bandleader
...
Arnie
Lee Wallace ...
Mr. Waxman
...
Photographer
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Storyline

When her husband dies on their wedding night, Judy decides to join the United States Army. She realizes that she has never been independent in her entire life. What looks like a bad decision at first, turns out not so bad at all. That is, until her superior officer makes sexual advances on her. She has been transferred to NATO headquarters in Europe and (re)meets the Frenchman Henri Tremont. Judy and Henri decide to marry, but will they? Written by Berend Meijer <bmeijer@euronet.nl>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Army was no laughing matter until Judy Benjamin joined it.

Genres:

Comedy | War

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

10 October 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La pícara recluta  »

Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$69,800,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Almost one hundred sets at the Burbank Studio were built for this picture's production. See more »

Goofs

When Benjamin jumps out of the airplane, the static line to deploy her parachute is not hooked up. See more »

Quotes

Aunt Kissy: I hope my coat's gonna be good enough. I had no idea it was gonna be so chilly.
Harriet Benjamin: It's November here, Kissy.
Teddy Benjamin: It's November everywhere, genius.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue:

When Judy Benjamin was eight years old, she confessed her life's desire to her best friend.

"All I want," Judy whispered, "is a big house... nice clothes, two closets, a live-in maid, and a professional man for a husband."

Today, all of Judy's dreams come true. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Rock Soup (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

Down by the Riverside
(uncredited)
traditional spiritual
played by jazz band in lounge
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Fun first half
9 January 2015 | by See all my reviews

Judy Benjamin (Goldie Hawn) is a picky superficial newlywed who loses her husband (Albert Brooks) during wedding night sex on the bathroom floor. She's 28, married twice, and trained for nothing. Lying recruiter Jim Ballard (Harry Dean Stanton) tricks her to join the army. She's in for a rude awakening and wants to go home. Captain Lewis (Eileen Brennan) is her tough trainer. After being belittled by her father, she decides to stay rather than go home getting taken care of. She becomes a great private and rout the opposition in a war game. While on leave in New Orleans, she meets french doctor Henri Tremont (Armand Assante). Later, he would propose but he isn't prince charming.

Goldie Hawn is fun and Eileen Brennan is terrific. They are both great and the movie is actually uplifting. The movie should probably stay with basic training. The second half isn't quite as compelling and the comedy dries up. The movie is better off expanding on the first half and cut out the second half.


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