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Pennies from Heaven (1981)

6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 3,748 users  
Reviews: 53 user | 25 critic

During the Great Depression, a sheet music salesman seeks to escape his dreary life through popular music and a love affair with an innocent school teacher.

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(written for the screen: based on original material by)
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Title: Pennies from Heaven (1981)

Pennies from Heaven (1981) on IMDb 6.5/10

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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 6 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Vernel Bagneris ...
...
Mr. Warner
...
The Detective
Jay Garner ...
The Banker
Robert Fitch ...
Al
...
Ed
Eliska Krupka ...
The Blind Girl
...
Tom
...
The Bartender (as Frank McCarthy)
Raleigh Bond ...
Mr. Barrett
Gloria LeRoy ...
A Prostitute (as Gloria Leroy)
Nancy Parsons ...
The Old Whore
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Storyline

In Chicago during the 1930s depression, sheet music salesman Arthur Parker is trying to sell his products, but it's not easy to convince unwilling music store owners to buy them. Although he's already married to the somewhat drab Joan, when he meets school teacher Eileen in a music store, he falls in love with her. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

There's a world on both sides of the rainbow where songs come true and every time it rains, it rains...

Genres:

Drama | Musical | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 January 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dinheiro do Céu  »

Box Office

Budget:

$22,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$3,600,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

("Follow the Fleet" dream sequence)| (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The MGM studio prohibited the broadcast of the BBC's original production Pennies from Heaven (1978) for a period of ten years from when this movie was premiered. In February 1990, the BBC aired the original for the first time since 1978. This only happened because around 1989, at the direction of Alan Yentob of BBC2, producer Kenith Trodd bought back from GM the rights to for "a very inconsiderable sum". See more »

Goofs

While the film is set in 1934, the characters watch Follow the Fleet in a movie theater - that film was released in 1936. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Arthur Parker: Joan... Joanie? Sugar? C'mon, Joan... sugar... wake up, baby.
Joan Parker: No, Arthur, don't.
Arthur Parker: Oh, baby... come on, sugar.
Joan Parker: No, it's too early, Arthur.
Arthur Parker: Oh, Joan.
Joan Parker: Arthur, there isn't time.
Arthur Parker: Oh, there's always time for this. Joan, come on.
Joan Parker: Stop it, Arthur! No, don't!
Joan Parker: [getting out of bed] No... I said no!
[...]
See more »

Connections

References Love Before Breakfast (1936) See more »

Soundtracks

Let's Put Out the Lights and Go to Sleep
(1932)
Written by Herman Hupfeld (uncredited)
Performed by Rudy Vallee and His Connecticut Yankees
Courtesy of Columbia Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Bravo!
4 May 2001 | by (Kansas City, MO.) – See all my reviews

Unusual story combining drama, musical numbers and fine performances by all concerned. This had to have been one of the first times that Steve Martin was allowed to show that he is so much more than just some guy with an arrow through his head, a fact that has been demonstrated time and time again over the past 20 years.

This film physically depicts the depression era in beautifully muted tones and powerfully evokes the desperate feelings of people trying to make ends meet during hard times. Martin gives a dead on performance of a man with nothing left in his moral bank account. Arthur does and says whatever it takes to gain the instant gratification he constantly seeks.

As for the ensemble musical numbers, let me just say that even Busby Berkeley might have been envious. Martin and Peter's turn at Fred and Ginger was well beyond adequate and Walken's tap dance number is worth the price of admission.

I watched this movie the other evening after not having seen it for several years. I was amazed at how much it had improved with age. This movie could almost certainly never be made today and, in fact, I find it hard to believe it was ever made. Hollywood rarely takes chances of any kind and this movie had to have been a huge gamble, even in 1981.


7 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Christopher Walken dance sequence sueziq
Truly disappointing... royalgravy
Has anyone seen the original? shere73
CD music romanceh
I missed part of the movie spare-flair
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