Burglar (1987)

R  |   |  Comedy, Crime  |  20 March 1987 (USA)
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Ratings: 4.9/10 from 3,114 users  
Reviews: 27 user | 10 critic

Bernice "Bernie" Rhodenbarr is a burglar by trade, and she runs a bookstore as well. Her friend Carl Hefler is a dog groomer. After a successful burglary, it's discovered that a dead body ... See full summary »



(novels), (screenplay) (as Joseph Loeb III) , 2 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Ray Kirschman
Dr. Cynthia Sheldrake
Carson Verrill
Detective Todras (as Anne DeSalvo)
Detective Nyswander
Elizabeth Ruscio ...
K.E. Graybow
Larry Mintz ...
Vincent 'Knobby' DiCarno
Raye Birk ...
The Jogger
Eric Poppick ...
Man in Cadillac
Thom Bray ...
Shoplifter in Bookstore
Nathan Davis ...
Mr. Paggif


Bernice "Bernie" Rhodenbarr is a burglar by trade, and she runs a bookstore as well. Her friend Carl Hefler is a dog groomer. After a successful burglary, it's discovered that a dead body was in the house she burgled. As she's the only one who can be placed at the scene of the crime, she has to use her criminal skills to clear her name of the murder AND avoid getting charged with the burglary. Written by Afterburner <aburner@erols.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A first rate comedy about a second story woman.


Comedy | Crime


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

20 March 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Burglar - Die diebische Elster  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$16,337,355 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


While loosely based on the Burglar novels by Lawrence Block, two of the principal characters underwent major changes: Bernard "Bernie" Rhodenbarr, a white male bookstore owner/burglar, became Bernice "Bernie" Rhodenbarr as played by Whoopi Goldberg; lesbian dog groomer Carolyn Kaiser, Bernie's best friend, became straight dog groomer Carl Heller and was portrayed by Bobcat Goldthwait. See more »


At the scene at the used book store when Bernice is on the phone trying to reach Abe Froman, the shoplifter approaches the counter to pay for the books. Bernice then locks the door and flips the closed sign leaving the two of them locked in the store. The shoplifter is caught and gets angry, and after Bernice pulls her gun on him and tells him to never steal from her again, he flies out of a now unlocked front door. See more »


Vincent 'Knobby' DiCarno: What'll it be?
Carl Hefler: [walking up to the bar] Package delivery.
Vincent 'Knobby' DiCarno: For who?
Carl Hefler: It just says "Mayday".
Vincent 'Knobby' DiCarno: Here I'll take it.
Carl Hefler: Ya gotta sign for it.
[passing a clipboard]
Vincent 'Knobby' DiCarno: [signs and returns clipboard]
Carl Hefler: [reading signature] Kay-no-bee... K-noby! Is that like in Star Wars?
Vincent 'Knobby' DiCarno: No idiot, it's "Knobby".
See more »


Features WKRP in Cincinnati (1978) See more »


Bernie's Groove
Written and Performed by The Distance
Produced by Bernard Edwards
See more »

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User Reviews

Good Movie, perfect WG vehicle.
24 December 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I really enjoyed this movie, actually I've enjoyed it a number of viewings. I purchased the DVD. Why did Whoopie stop making movies that were so much fun. I enjoyed the books for which the movie is based, and prefer a woman to a man as a cat burglar. The cast is wonderful, especially Leslie Ann Warren, she is a total hoot. I won't spoil the ending but it was really cool. The atmosphere while they are bar-hopping is so realistic, having been a bar-hopper in my youth in San Francisco. Why isn't Hollywood making these little sleeper hits anymore. Now its all big budget busts, or small artsy fartsy movies. How about a well played mystery without the "Big" named pretty boys and girls as stars. More movies like this and perhaps the box office slump will not stop slumping...

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

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