Charles Sanford "Charlie" Babbit is a self-centered Los Angeles-based automobile dealer/hustler/bookie who is at war with his own life. Charlie, as a young teenager, used his father's 1948 Buick convertible without permission and as a result, he went to jail for two days on account that his father reported it stolen. It is then that Charlie learns that his estranged father died and left him from his last will and testament a huge bed of roses and the car while the remainder will of $3 Million goes into a trust fund to be distributed to someone. Charlie seemed pretty angry by this and decides to look into this matter. It seems as if that "someone" is Raymond, Charlie's unknown brother, an autistic savant who lives in a world of his own, resides at the Walbrook Institute. Charlie then kidnaps Raymond and decides to take him on a lust for life trip to the west coast as a threat to get the $3 Million inheritance. Raymond's acts and nagging, including repeated talks of "Abbott & Costello",... Written by
Christopher Howell (Ckhowell75360@aol.com)
The elderly man in the waiting room who talks on and on about the Pony Express is Byron P. Cavnar, an 89-year-old local who was in the waiting room when the crew arrived to film there. He got to talking on his favorite subject, the Pony Express, and director Barry Levinson got such a kick out of it that he let Caunar keep on talking as the cameras rolled; all his dialog was spontaneous and not scripted. See more »
The card scheme with all the Queens is repeated several times during the course of Charlie's play. See more »
Now it's five and a half weeks and I'm still sitting on four Lamborghinis that can't meet spot emissions standards. Now, how many times you wash out with EPA?
[on a separate line]
Uh, yes sir, they're finally, uh, clearing EPA; uh, just one or two more days.
Three times? You're really on a roll here, my friend; four cars, three times each - that's zip for twelve. What are you, a... mechanic, or a NASA engineer? Now listen, now, I told you I've never dealt with these ...
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Throughout the movie, Raymond is taking pictures. The pictures that he takes are shown as the background for the credits. See more »
Tom Cruise stars as a used car salesman, who is angry when his father's inheritance is left to his older autistic brother (Dustin Hoffman), whose existence had not been revealed to him.
The film is built around its two assured central performances. Hoffman gives an excellent portrayal of a man with autism, totally unable to comprehend the real world around him. Cruise is no less impressive. While he is essentially playing to type, his character's attitude changes so gradually throughout the film that you barely notice, and without Cruise's subtle performance this transformation would be much less credible.
This is a highly commendable film, which, despite tackling a tricky subject, refuses to succumb to sentimentality. In giving autism such publicity, the film has hopefully helped to lessen the stigma brought on by ignorance of this condition.
Rain Man's great success is that it shows the way forward for issue driven movies in Hollywood. Its success at the box office demonstrates that taking a risk can pay off in spades, provided that the film is good enough.
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