7.8/10
34,935
111 user 62 critic

Zelig (1983)

"Documentary" about a man who can look and act like whoever he's around, and meets various famous people.

Director:

Writer:

Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 6 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

In his attempts to reconcile a lounge singer with his mistress, a hapless talent agent is mistaken as her lover by a jealous gangster.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Mia Farrow, Nick Apollo Forte
Comedy | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

In New Jersey in 1935, a movie character walks off the screen and into the real world.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Mia Farrow, Jeff Daniels, Danny Aiello
Radio Days (1987)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A nostalgic look at radio's golden age focusing on one ordinary family and the various performers in the medium.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Mia Farrow, Dianne Wiest, Mike Starr
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A wacky inventor and his wife invite two other couples for a weekend party at a romantic summer house in the 1900s countryside.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Mia Farrow, José Ferrer
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

While attending a retrospective of his work, a filmmaker recalls his life and his loves: the inspirations for his films.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Charlotte Rampling, Jessica Harper
Comedy | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

In czarist Russia, a neurotic soldier and his distant cousin formulate a plot to assassinate Napoleon.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Diane Keaton, Georges Adet
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

An ophthalmologist's mistress threatens to reveal their affair to his wife while a married documentary filmmaker is infatuated with another woman.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Martin Landau, Woody Allen, Bill Bernstein
Bananas (1971)
Certificate: GP Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

When a bumbling New Yorker is dumped by his activist girlfriend, he travels to a tiny Latin American nation and becomes involved in its latest rebellion.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Louise Lasser, Carlos Montalbán
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Between two Thanksgivings two years apart, Hannah's husband falls in love with her sister Lee, while her hypochondriac ex-husband rekindles his relationship with her sister Holly.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Mia Farrow, Dianne Wiest, Michael Caine
Sleeper (1973)
Comedy | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A nerdish store owner is revived out of cryostasis into a future world to fight an oppressive government.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Diane Keaton, John Beck
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

When their best friends announce that they're separating, a professor and his wife discover the faults in their own marriage.

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Mia Farrow, Sydney Pollack
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Seven segments related to one another only in that they all purport to be based on sections of the book by David Reuben. The segments range from "Do Aphrodisiacs Work?" in which a court ... See full summary »

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Gene Wilder, Louise Lasser
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Patrick Horgan ...
The Narrator (voice)
John Buckwalter ...
Dr. Sindell
Marvin Chatinover ...
Glandular Diagnosis Doctor
Stanley Swerdlow ...
Mexican Food Doctor
Paul Nevens ...
Dr. Birsky
Howard Erskine ...
Hypodermic Doctor
George Hamlin ...
Experimental Drugs Doctor
Ralph Bell ...
Other Doctor
Richard Whiting ...
Other Doctor
Will Hussung ...
Other Doctor (as Will Hussong)
Robert Iglesia ...
Man in Barber Chair
Eli Resnick ...
Man in Park
Edward McPhillips ...
Scotsman
Edit

Storyline

Fictional documentary about the life of human chameleon Leonard Zelig, a man who becomes a celebrity in the 1920s due to his ability to look and act like whoever is around him. Clever editing places Zelig in real newsreel footage of Woodrow Wilson, Babe Ruth, and others. Written by Scott Renshaw <as.idc@forsythe.stanford.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

25 August 1983 (Argentina)  »

Also Known As:

Identity Crisis and Its Relationship to Personality Disorder  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Edit

Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$60,119, 17 July 1983, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$11,798,616
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Cinematographer Gordon Willis has said of this film: ""There was a point when I thought we were never going to finish, a point when I thought I was going to go nuts. I have never worked so hard at making something difficult look so simple". See more »

Goofs

At one point, the narrator mentions that there is a photo of Leonard Zelig as Pagliacci. "Pagliacci" is the Italian plural for "clowns". The correct way to say it would be " a photo of Leonard Zelig as Pagliaccio", or "a photo of Leonard Zelig as Canio (the leading male character, who plays Pagliaccio in a play-within-the-play in the opera "Pagliacci".). See more »

Quotes

Leonard Zelig: But I've never flown before in my life, and it shows exactly what you can do, if you're a total psychotic!
See more »


Soundtracks

Charleston
(1923)
Music by James P. Johnson
Lyrics by Cecil Mack
Performed by Dick Hyman
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

My brief review of the film
26 July 2005 | by See all my reviews

A fascinating pseudo-documentary with an intriguing premise, the footage shown looks very authentic, edited well together, with apt sets and costumes. A number of original songs written especially for the film are included, and they sound exactly like the type of tunes expected in a 1930s musical. The non-original music choices also suit the project. Woody Allen superbly acts out the interesting character that he has written for himself: a very different type of insecure, neurotic person to what he usually plays. Even at less than eighty minutes, the material nevertheless wears thin by the end, but some great ideas are developed along the way. It also feels a bit odd to watch, as the film is not really a comedy, nor a drama - not fitting into any genre - then again, in general real life are not meant to be straight comedies or dramas, are they? With the limitations of the style that Allen has chosen for the film taken into account, he does a pretty good job.


19 of 26 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 111 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page