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Trading Places (1983)

 -  Comedy  -  8 June 1983 (USA)
7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 79,881 users   Metascore: 66/100
Reviews: 141 user | 64 critic | 9 from Metacritic.com

A snobbish investor and a wily street con artist find their positions reversed as part of a bet by two callous millionaires.

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Title: Trading Places (1983)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Maurice Woods ...
Duke & Duke Employee
Richard D. Fisher Jr. ...
Duke & Duke Employee
Jim Gallagher ...
Duke & Duke Employee
Anthony DiSabatino ...
Duke & Duke Employee
Bonnie Behrend ...
Duke & Duke Employee
Sunnie Merrill ...
Duke & Duke Employee
James Newell ...
Duke & Duke Employee (as Jim Newell)
Mary St. John ...
Duke & Duke Employee
Bonnie Tremena ...
Duke & Duke Employee
David Schwartz ...
Duke & Duke Employee
...
...
Tom Degidon ...
Duke Domestic
Edit

Storyline

Louis Winthorpe is a businessman who works for commodities brokerage firm of Duke and Duke owned by the brothers Mortimer and Randolph Duke. Now they bicker over the most trivial of matters and what they are bickering about is whether it's a person's environment or heredity that determines how well they will do in life. When Winthorpe bumps into Billy Ray Valentine, a street hustler and assumes he is trying to rob him, he has him arrested. Upon seeing how different the two men are, the brothers decide to make a wager as to what would happen if Winthorpe loses his job, his home and is shunned by everyone he knows and if Valentine was given Winthorpe's job. So they proceed to have Winthorpe arrested and to be placed in a compromising position in front of his girlfriend. So all he has to rely on is the hooker who was hired to ruin him. Written by rcs0411@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Take two complete strangers, make one of them rich the other poor... just watch the fun while they're... TRADING PLACES See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 June 1983 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Black or White  »

Box Office

Gross:

$90,400,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John Landis:  [look to camera]  When the Duke brothers talk down to Billy Ray Valentine about commodities, he looks directly into the camera as if saying, "These guys must think I'm a complete idiot." See more »

Goofs

When the members of the club are asked to dig inside the pocket of the man to their right and to put the content in front of them, the row of members in the back of the room do not have any table or any support on where to put said content, as they are only sitting on chairs. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Coleman: [holding a breakfast tray while Louis is still asleep] Your breakfast, sir.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The names of the major actors/actresses are shown superimposed on short clips from the film. The clips showing Dan Aykroyd, Eddie Murphy and Jamie-Lee Curtis respectively are obvious outtakes as they all crack up and burst into smiles and/or laughter. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Party Down: Precious Lights Pre-School Auction (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

ANDANTE CANTABILE
From K-465 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performed by Murray Adler, Harris Goldman, David Schwartz, Armand Kaproff
See more »

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User Reviews

A very entertaining, thoroughly enjoyable and highly recommended movie…
22 May 2004 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

`Trading Places' is one of the best movies and one of the best comedies that I have had the privilege of viewing and almost every aspect of this movie is done to the highest excellence and the highest quality. I have always considered that some of the most entertaining and enjoyable movies came out during the 1980s and `Trading Places' definitely falls within this category.

Everything is a success with this movie –the high quality of acting from both the main actors and the supporting cast, the wonderful humour and engaging dialogue contained within the script, the development of the plot, the music selection provided for the various scenes and even the atmosphere and scenery contained in the movie. Eddie Murphy and Dan Ackroyd are particularly outstanding in their various roles –and keep the excellent performances up in their reversal of roles. Ralph Bellamy, Don Ameche and Denham Elliot also provide their characters with a great amount of depth and dimension and make what would have already been a wonderful comedy success even more entertaining. The only very minor criticism is that Jamie Lee Curtis is meant to portray a prostitute in this movie. Jamie Lee Curtis is much too high quality of an actress for the role of a prostitute and I think if the emphasis had been on her character's profession it would have weakened her contribution to the movie. But thankfully the writers and producers recognized that she shouldn't be portrayed in a one-dimensional role and her truly wonderful and highly excellent acting abilities shone through during the whole movie.

The script flowed naturally and had an edge to it that made it both entertaining and intriguing. Even though the storyline and outcome was slightly predictable, the scriptwriters succeeded in keeping you interested and keeping you entertained as the sequence of events unfolded. The humour contained in the movie is genuinely entertaining and doesn't sound forced or strained in the same way that it does in some other movies. Dan Ackroyd and Eddie Murphy make a thoroughly wonderful team and I hope they someday consider doing another movie together. I think the 1980s marked the high point of Eddie Murphy's career and this was one of the movies that cemented his reputation as a great comedian.

I couldn't recommend this movie highly enough. A truly great comedy masterpiece and classic.


29 of 33 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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