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Bright Lights, Big City (1988)

 -  Drama  -  1 April 1988 (USA)
5.6
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Ratings: 5.6/10 from 5,137 users  
Reviews: 35 user | 24 critic

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.

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(novel), (screenplay)
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Title: Bright Lights, Big City (1988)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Amanda
...
Megan
...
Clara
...
Vicky
...
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

Kansas kid Jamie Conway got employed in Gotham Magazine by claiming himself "fluent in French" but actually he was a French amateur himself. Jamie was a drug addict himself due to his wife leaving him and go Paris for her fashion show but she did not find him when she came back to New York. Finally Jamie lost his job due to a French message 4 mistakes. Megan was worried about Jamie and comforted Jamie about Amanda's leaving. Conversely, Jamie's friend introduced Vicky to Jamie and finally Vicky replaced Amanda and become Jamie's best female friend. Jamie finally realized that life can be very optimistic, just depends on how you think about your life, and how you wish to decorate your life. Written by Kazuha

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It's 6.00am. Do you know where you are? See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

1 April 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

As Mil Luzes de Nova Iorque  »

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
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

James Bridges replaced Joyce Chopra as director. 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

Bartender at Fashion Show: Sorry, the bar is closed.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Cinema Snob: Wired (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

BNT Blues
Performed by Bobby Forester
Produced by Donald Fagen
Music by Bobby Forester & Clarence "Tootsie" Bean
Released on the 1993 album "Five by Five"
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Dim lights, fuzzy details.
19 January 2009 | by (las vegas, nv) – See all my reviews

It must have struck cinematographer Gordon Willis as highly ironic that he would shoot a film with the title "Bright Lights, Big City". Willis, known for his fabulous work with dark, muted colors and characters in shadows or silhouettes, seems absolutely lost within this night-life milieu, which isn't bright and hardly seems big. Jay McInerney adapted his own 1984 novel about a would-be writer in New York City whose job in the research department of a prominent magazine (Gotham!) is constantly threatened by his drug use, which may stem from a broken marriage and memories of his deceased mother. It's not difficult to pinpoint what went wrong here: although Michael J. Fox may seem well-cast from the outset, it clearly becomes apparent he's in over his head. Fox (whose plastic voice-over narration was probably supposed to sound hard-boiled) is too well-scrubbed and corn-fed to be convincing as a party maniac; acting disoriented by blinking his eyes heavily and tightening his thin mouth, Fox is strictly a morose good-time guy, mourning the separation from fashion model spouse Phoebe Cates. But there's nothing at stake for this kid when he stays up all night (except for his job at the magazine, which hardly matters to us since the sequences set there are wholly unconvincing). Director James Bridges takes an episodic approach to the narrative, but his continuity (or perhaps the editing) is sloppy and gummy, and the people in Fox's small circle aren't terribly interesting. And did the movie go through a budgetary crisis? The weak nightclubbing scenes look barren and cheap (aside from some city vistas and subway rides, the picture could easily take place in Passaic, New Jersey for all we know). When Fox goes out on a blind date with Tracy Pollan, we know instantly these two clean-cut kids will click on their appearance alone: they look like an upscale young couple coming home from a Republican fundraiser. There's nothing dangerous about Michael J. Fox or his approach to this part. He drinks, he snorts, he swears, but he doesn't live the highs and lows of an addict on the edge. Or, is this guy an addict? There's no visual punch in Bridges' staging to suggest he's anything more than a spoiled kid looking for a girl to adore him. *1/2 from ****


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Great Acting and Movie, But Needed One Edit denise1234
Couldn't finish it. matthewcs25
What's up with the low rating?? barrs6
heart breaking ton_tongue_toffee
book, anyone? readbaby2000
The ending stanlee666
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