5.6/10
6,056
37 user 28 critic

Bright Lights, Big City (1988)

R | | Drama | 1 April 1988 (USA)
A disillusioned young writer living in New York City turns to drugs and drinking to block out the memories of his dead mother and estranged wife.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
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2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Tad
...
Amanda
...
Megan
...
Clara
...
...
Mr. Vogel
...
Michael
David Warrilow ...
Rittenhouse
...
Mother
...
Yasu Wade
...
Ferret Man
Gina Belafonte ...
Kathy
...
Rich Vanier
Bernard Zette ...
Stevie (as Zette)
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Storyline

Jamie Conway (Michael J. Fox) is an aspiring writer and yuppie living in New York City who seeks oblivion in cocaine and the glittery nightclub scene as his life falls apart (his wife leaves him, his mother dies, etc.). With his hard-partying friend Tad Allagash (Kiefer Sutherland) tagging along with him during their nights out, Jamie finds it increasingly difficult to show up every day at his unfulfilling job as a fast checker for a literary Manhattan magazine. Written by Larry B.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

All that glitters is not gold. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

1 April 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die grellen Lichter der Großstadt  »

Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$16,118,077 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(DuArt)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The book "Bright Lights, Big City" is one of the few well-known novels in the English language written in second person ("you") form, and the film's narration is a result of this adaptation. Much of the narration is lifted directly or adapted from the novel; for example, the movie's first line, "You are not the kind of guy who would be at a place like this at this time of the morning..." is also the first line of the book. See more »

Goofs

When Jamie (Michael J. Fox) runs from his brother who's been waiting for him on Jamie's stoop, he enters the Christopher Street station of NYC's 1 train. But when the camera shows him on the subway platform he's actually at the 42nd Street/Times Square station. See more »

Quotes

Jamie Conway: There's a certain shabby nobility in failing all by myself.
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Soundtracks

Obsessed
Performed by The Noise Club
Produced by Oliver Leiber
Words & Music by Oliver Leiber
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User Reviews

 
Glitzy nights of excitement and sex, big apple style, hide a not so bright world of drug abuse
27 November 2013 | by (adelaide, australia) – See all my reviews

This is one of my favourite Michael J Fox movies. We really get to see him in a dramatic role, though I hadn't bothered with that turkey, Light Of Day. This refreshingly original film was something totally different totally for me, a hard hitting drama that plays well on screen, though it might of not had the impact, the novel intended. An R rating slapped on, as a few were back in the day, supposedly for drug use, like Fox's bleeding nostril when he does too much coke, didn't make much sense. We see two hot women kissing in a cubicle, when Jamie (Fox) walks in then quickly retreats, spouting a funny response of dialogue, in that great comic timing of his. Could this be another reason. Whatever it is, nothing should of stopped people under 18 from seeing this. Jamie Conway's life is a mess, which he refuses to acknowledge. The first anniversary of his mother's passing is coming up. His beautiful model girlfriend (Cates-really) a heartless b..ch has reappeared in his life, choosing a career over a sunken Jamie. His prim and demanding boss, an editor of a magazine, an old hag, is pushing him to finish an article, where he'd rather be doing drugs, or trying to write that aspiring never to published novel. Also little brother has just popped into town. As an anti drug movie, this one works well. In the face of mishap, loss, whatever, drugs are not the solution, and it doesn't help when you're swayed by slime bag friends. Fox does well, though he's not great. Though really, he's never been as good an actor as people have been led to believe. Shining performances comes from Cates and Sutherland. Robards was fun to watch too, and Wiest was great as always, as Fox's mother, seen in flashbacks, that we're a bit heavily laid on. BLBC is an engrossing, if intriguing drama about young 80's New Yorkers, and the drug and disco scene, and we can't forget the coma baby. The scene with Fox again confronting Cates who says to him in casual tone, "How are ya?" where Fox is just thunderstruck, and crashes back against a transvestite, is probably one of three memorable moments. But Fox fan should like it. Well made drama, that should be viewed time and time again, even for under 18's.


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