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Reviews & Ratings for
"Moonlighting" Moonlighting (Pilot) (1985)

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8 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

The best television show of all time, seminal Bruce Willis

Author: mdeasy ( from Tulsa, Oklahoma
27 February 2000

During the course of the series Moonlighting, Bruce Willis came of age as an actor. Since the series has been replayed on Bravo, I have re-watched and recorded 30 or so episodes. This series had some really good acting, but some of the best writing that has ever been done on network television. The show won Emmy awards several times over.

The funniest episode was Atomic Shakespeare. This was a parody of The Taming of The Shrew, with Dave and Mattie as Kate and Petruchio. This episode has a cooking musical number with Dave singing Good Love at their wedding. They put ninjas in for a fight scene and sunglasses on the horses to make them look cool. It had it all.

Maybe one of the great moments in TV was the episode Big Man on Mulberry Street. David flies home to NY when it comes out that he was married at one time. This is shocking news to Mattie, who did not know or suspect. The highlight is a musical number to Billy Joel's Big Man on Mulberry Street, with Dave and Mattie both dancing and an amazing dance from a Broadway dancer. There is a lot of compassion here as we see way into Dave's soul, and Mattie for flying out to NY to chase and watch over Dave. In the final scene she lays her head on his shoulder, and he invites her to leave it there for the next 20 or 30 years. It is touching and reveals the romantic intentions of the shows future.

The show took a strange turn when Cybil Sheppard got pregnant during the fourth season. She was out of the show for almost ten episodes. Bruce Willis carried it off wonderfully, with the continuation of good mysteries, occasional musical numbers, and even some wild Claymation dream scenes. But the fire between them was unattainable as there was too much physical separation between them. This also coincided with their characters sleeping together. Some thought that was the end of the good writing. Actually by the end of the fourth season and the fifth season, they had survived a writer's strike, and many slow production dates, because of the quality of the writing and film of the shows. Many of the writers were in high demand by then, with their Emmy awards and some of them began to jump ship. The show never recovered.

There has never been this kind of original quality since. This was Television at its very finest moments. There will never be another like it.

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6 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

A witty, wacky, action-filled introduction to TV's hot couple of the 1980's

Author: Critic2017B from Tallahassee, FL
8 January 2002

When I first watched this pilot episode back in 1985, I tuned in to see Cybill Shephard, and she was wonderful. But what I saw from then unknown Bruce Willis totally blew me away. He was original. There was no one like him on tv at that time. The chemistry between the two was more than apparent from their first scenes together, and it kept me and millions of others coming back week after week to watch.

Wacky, witty and action-filled, this pilot gave a nice introduction to the characters and style of the show. Although several of the series episodes of Moonlighting were much better than this first movie, here we get a taste of the fast paced dialog and exciting banter between the two leads that was a hallmark of this great show.

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4 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

great pilot for a great series

Author: movieman_kev from United States
27 September 2005

Ex-model Maddie Hayes, now penniless thanks to an shifty accountant, decides to liquidate the businesses that she still owns. But David Addison wants desperately to keep his job as a private eye at a detective agency that Maddie owns. After a dying man forces Maddi to take a watch, they find themselves chased by bad people. As well as the start of a TV love/hate relationship for the ages. The chemistry between Bruce Willis and Cybil Sheppard is amazing, the dialog is great and this is one of the better TV movie pilots that I've seen. The pilot can be seen on the Complete First & Second seasons DVD Set (and I can't recommend that you buy it highly enough)

My Grade: A

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4 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Waycool Willis & Silkily Sexy Shepherd = Chemistry, pure chemistry, baby!

Author: ( from fairview, nj
11 April 2003

MOONLIGHTING (MADE FOR TV - 1985) *** Cybill Shepherd, Bruce Willis, Allyce Beasley. 2hr pilot film that launched the screwball romantic comic/popular tv series that re-ignited Shepherd's career and made Willis into a household name prior to his movie megastardom. Shepherd as former fashion model Maddie Hayes faces bankruptcy and decides to save her failing detective agency investment, "The Blue Moon Detective Agency" and meets her destined-to-be love, smart alek charmer David Addison with some great moments of dialogue that became a trademark to the series' success. Chemistry, baby, chemistry!

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

One of the best shows of the '80s

Author: tonyarea18
12 December 2000

Moonlighting was a wonderful show, it has all the style, magic, romance, comedy and greatness of the '80s, and when you watch it, you feel nostalgic for all the good all times. Bruce Willis and Cybill Shepherd were wonderful on the show and had the most amazing chemistry of any couple on television. The writing on the show was wonderful, the smart, quirky and snappy dialogues, the wonderful use of jokes and ironies and the good but not overuse of pop culture references. Bruce Willis shows some of his best acting of his career on Moonlighting, he is David Addison, a private detective who is easy going and enjoys life and is a wise-ass, and Maddie Hayes is an ex-model that decides to run the Blue Moon agency after her ex-husband leaves her with nothing, that's how Moonlighting started. What made this show so great was the chemistry and the love/hate relationship between David and Maddie, which was a joy to watch. Truly one of the best and most enjoyable romance comedies of all time.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

A Truly unique and beautiful show the likes of which may never be seen again.

Author: Fletch-8 from Pittsburgh, PA
22 January 2000

When you look at all of the c**p on television now and see the fright people cook up on news shows about terrorists and other unimaginable atrocities, one thing comes to my mind -- where have Dave and Maddie gone? I was in grade school when the show premiered and the morning after a new episode appeared (bless them for taking the extra time to film the shows and making them right!) we would all say "hey! Did you catch Moonlighting last night!?!?!?" A show that wasn't afraid to admit that it was just that -- a show. Isn't it nice to watch a truly serious villain attempt to do some major harm only to have ol' Dave Addison laugh and make wisecracks in his face. Come back, Dave and Maddie -- we miss you -- at least I sure do!

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:


Author: kystilla from Tallinn, Estonia
10 January 2004

A TV channel in my home country (Estonia) started to show this. First I didn't watch it, thought it was just a boring serial. But once I saw it by an accident and boy, was I amazed. It is truly a great movie. It has everything - style, class, humor, elegance, magic. Style indeed, though 80's was a terrible period of time but still, that show has maintained style and class.

Who makes a serial worth watching? The cast, of course. And Bruce Willis along with Cybill Shepherd are just amazing. They're young and know that they have the whole show on them. And they carry it with strength and power.

I have never seen anything like it before and I doubt that there will be anything like it. So people, if you want to see a truly classical serial, watch the Moonlighting :)

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:


Author: ( from ATHENS, GREECE
27 June 2003

18 years later and Moonlighting is still a modern comment on human relations,love feelings of a man and a woman who have a great personality and work together...And all that with style and romance,character and sense of humor!

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Where Does The Time Go

Author: DKosty123 from United States
1 November 2008

It doesn't seem like it has been More than 20 years since this pilot hit the air. When you look at it now and see dial pay phones and no cell phones, you realize it has been.

The main plots in the pilot involves model Maddie Hayes being taken for all her money by bogus financial advisor's & $4 million dollars in smuggled diamonds that Maddie & David Addison accidentally stumble onto. This pilot relies upon two things which made the entire series a major success. The chemistry between Bruce Willis & Cybill Shepherd is the main thing. A clever script is the other.

While the script is a fresh approach, some of the sequences go back to classic material. The main finale sequence featuring some stunts, a tall building with a clock, and some breath taking moments draws upon the silent classic SAFETY LAST from Harold Lloyd for its inspiration.

All in all, this pilot is extremely effective introducing everyone and providing some top notch 1980's era music in its sound track. It is a key building block from which the rest of the series takes off on.

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Seen when I was 13

Author: Cristi_Ciopron from CGSM, Soseaua Nationala 49
24 May 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

What are the things that give us a real, authentic, clean,, original, fresh, savory pleasure and joy? They aren't many; and not too few, either. Like an actor's role, like his play in a certain film. This warms, I believe, in a subtle way, the mind. You say:--how fine, how deliciously nuanced and reasoned and thoroughly felt and sensibly approached is this jewel role!

Willis' performance in this TV series is one such longly wished thing. Enjoy!All of it!As a career chance,"David" was indeed the jackpot.It eclipses everything else Willis ever did.The fragrance and savor are unique.

So, what the famed pilot has to offer is mainly Maddie Hayes at her very hottest, with her nice tits seeing through. TV fun has never been so good. Willis makes that great famous entrance (--namely, playing the ball on his desk--) that should pave his way towards being USA' best comedy actor ever. Otherwise, the crime plot is rather trite '80s suspense, not the very smartest things this show had to offer; one thing has, anyway, to be granted—the climactic action stuff was great, big—time stunts and all.

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