MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 592 this week

To Be or Not to Be (1983)

 -  Drama | War | Comedy  -  1 February 1984 (France)
6.7
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.7/10 from 6,544 users  
Reviews: 28 user | 22 critic

A bad Polish actor is just trying to make a living when what should intrude but World War II in the form of an invasion. His wife has the habit of entertaining young Polish officers while ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay), 3 more credits »
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 22 titles
created 02 Mar 2011
 
a list of 27 titles
created 12 Oct 2011
 
a list of 21 titles
created 16 Feb 2012
 
a list of 25 titles
created 06 Nov 2012
 
a list of 35 titles
created 3 months ago
 

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: To Be or Not to Be (1983)

To Be or Not to Be (1983) on IMDb 6.7/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of To Be or Not to Be.

User Polls

Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Certificate: Passed Comedy | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

During the Nazi occupation of Poland, an acting troupe becomes embroiled in a Polish soldier's efforts to track down a German spy.

Director: Ernst Lubitsch
Stars: Carole Lombard, Jack Benny, Robert Stack
Comedy | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An unorthodox and irreverent DJ begins to shake up things when he is assigned to the US Armed Services Radio station in Vietnam.

Director: Barry Levinson
Stars: Robin Williams, Forest Whitaker, Tung Thanh Tran
MASH (1970)
Comedy | War | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The staff of a Korean War field hospital use humor and hijinks to keep their sanity in the face of the horror of war.

Director: Robert Altman
Stars: Donald Sutherland, Elliott Gould, Tom Skerritt
Comedy | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Comedy-drama about life on a not particularly important ship of the US Navy during WW2.

Directors: John Ford, Mervyn LeRoy, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Henry Fonda, James Cagney, William Powell
Drama | Comedy | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

1935. A group of elderly British women, who the Italians have named the Scorpioni, have chosen Italy, specifically Florence, as a place to live to blend their proper British sensibilities ... See full summary »

Director: Franco Zeffirelli
Stars: Maggie Smith, Judi Dench, Joan Plowright
Underground (1995)
Comedy | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

The story follows an underground weapons manufacturer in Belgrade during WWII and evolves into fairly surreal situations. A black marketeer who smuggles the weapons to partisans doesn't ... See full summary »

Director: Emir Kusturica
Stars: Predrag Manojlovic, Lazar Ristovski, Mirjana Jokovic
Mediterraneo (1991)
Comedy | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Greek Sea, World War II. An Italian ship leaves a handful of soldiers in a little island; their mission is to spot enemy ships and to hold the island in case of attack. The village of the ... See full summary »

Director: Gabriele Salvatores
Stars: Diego Abatantuono, Claudio Bigagli, Giuseppe Cederna
No Man's Land I (2001)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Bosnia and Herzegovina during 1993 at the time of the heaviest fighting between the two warring sides. Two soldiers from opposing sides in the conflict, Nino and Ciki, become trapped in no man's land, whilst a third soldier becomes a living booby trap.

Director: Danis Tanovic
Stars: Branko Djuric, Rene Bitorajac, Filip Sovagovic
Comedy | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Dictator Adenoid Hynkel tries to expand his empire while a poor Jewish barber tries to avoid persecution from Hynkel's regime.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Paulette Goddard, Jack Oakie
Comedy | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

An apprentice train dispatcher at a village station seeks his first sexual encounter and becomes despondent when he is unable to perform.

Director: Jirí Menzel
Stars: Václav Neckár, Josef Somr, Vlastimil Brodský
Comedy | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

In 1944 Poland, a Jewish shop keeper named Jakob is summoned to ghetto headquarters after being caught out near curfew. While waiting for the German Kommondant, Jakob overhears a German ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Kassovitz
Stars: Robin Williams, Hannah Taylor Gordon, Éva Igó
Comedy | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

An American naval officer's talent for living the good life in wartime is challenged when he falls in love and is sent on a dangerous mission.

Director: Arthur Hiller
Stars: James Garner, Julie Andrews, Melvyn Douglas
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ronny Graham ...
Sondheim
...
Gruba
Zale Kessler ...
Bieler
...
Lewis J. Stadlen ...
Lupinsky
...
...
Ratkowski
James 'Gypsy' Haake ...
Sasha (as James Haake)
Scamp ...
Mutki
...
...
Prof. Siletski (as Jose Ferrer)
...
...
...
...
Edit

Storyline

A bad Polish actor is just trying to make a living when what should intrude but World War II in the form of an invasion. His wife has the habit of entertaining young Polish officers while he's on stage which is also a source of depression to him. When one of her officers comes back on a Secret Mission, the actor takes charge and comes up with a plan for them to escape. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

That is the movie!

Genres:

Drama | War | Comedy

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

1 February 1984 (France)  »

Also Known As:

To Be or Not to Be  »

Box Office

Gross:

$13,000,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The opening song-and-dance number "Sweet Georgia Brown" featuring Mel Brooks and Anne Bancroft was a comic rehash in Polish of the old "Ginger and Fred" Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers song-and-dance number. The routine maintains the tradition of his movies featuring a wacky song-and-dance number even though he is neither writer nor director of this film, but producer. See more »

Goofs

Anne Bancroft's character's name is Anna Bronski. However, it should be Anna Bronska because it is an adjectival surname and all adjectives in Polish have masculine and feminine forms. The endings -i and -y are masculine, the feminine equivalents of adjectival surnames end in -a. See more »

Quotes

Frederick Bronski: When this is allover, I'm gonna get you everything you need. You need a coat... you need a dress... you need shoes.
[Rubbing Andre's face, thinking he's Anna]
Frederick Bronski: and you need a shave...
[he thinks]
Frederick Bronski: ... a shave?
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the end of the movie, each cast member comes and takes a bow, as they would for a stage play, while their names are on the screen. See more »

Connections

References The 39 Steps (1935) See more »

Soundtracks

Ladies
Music & Lyrics by Mel Brooks and Ronny Graham
Performed by Mel Brooks (uncredited)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Light comedy also respectful of history
20 January 2005 | by See all my reviews

TO BE OR NOT TO BE

Aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Sound format: Dolby Stereo

1939: As the Nazi's invade their homeland, a humble Warsaw theatre troupe stages a daring escape after stumbling on a Gestapo plot to kill members of the Polish resistance.

Whilst the fondly-remembered Ernst Lubitsch original was actually filmed during wartime (1942), at a point when the outcome of the conflict was still uncertain, this updated vehicle for Mel Brooks has no such edge, but Alan Johnson's fast-paced remake at least preserves the elements of comedy and drama which made the earlier film so potent. There aren't many belly laughs to be had from the low-key screenplay (co-written by Thomas Meehan and Ronnie Graham), and the Nazi caricatures are fun without being especially funny (Charles Durning was Oscar-nominated for his role as bumbling Gestapo officer 'Concentration Camp' Erhardt), but the film offers an upbeat mixture of thrills and frivolity, and a superb cast of experienced players take turns stealing the limelight from leading player Brooks (Anne Bancroft has a ball as Brooks' duplicitous wife, easing her marriage blues by encouraging a half-innocent liaison with handsome airman Tim Matheson, who's been assigned by British Intelligence to foil a dastardly plot initiated by double agent Jose Ferrer). As in the original, the movie portrays the Nazi threat in a comic manner whilst constantly reminding viewers of the deadly reality which underpins the narrative, and while the scenario is fast-paced, funny and exciting in equal measure, it's also surprisingly respectful of history. Johnson's unfussy direction keeps things moving along nicely, and production values are efficient throughout.


14 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Best scene of the film and unique to a Mel Brooks picture bigdbc
best brooks khmmo
Mel & Anne AgnesGooch
The Real Director marshallfoltz
The Polish song livieresm
Where Is The DVD? jsimpso1
Discuss To Be or Not to Be (1983) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?