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The Fabulous Baker Boys (1989)

The lives of two struggling musicians, who happen to be brothers, inevitably change when they team up with a beautiful, up-and-coming singer.




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Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 14 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Ellie Raab ...
Girl in Bed
Vince Nancy
Bradford English ...
Kid at Vet
Gregory James ...
Hotel Masseuse (as Jeffrey J. Nowinski)
Laughing Bar Patron


Frank and Jack Baker are professional musicians who play in small clubs. They perform cover tunes of music standards and have never needed a day job. Times are changing and dates are becoming more difficult to get so they interview female singers. They finally decide on Susie Diamond, a former 'escort' who needs some refinement, but the act begins to take off again. While the act is now successful, both Frank and Jack have problems with their life on the road. Susie becomes the agent that makes them re-evaluate where they are going, and how honest they have been with each other. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


For 31 years it's been just the Fabulous Baker Boys... but times change.


Drama | Music | Romance


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

13 October 1989 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die fabelhaften Baker Boys  »

Box Office


$13,000,000 (estimated)


$16,823,529 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Although Dave Grusin recorded the songs for the movie soundtrack, Beau Bridges and Jeff Bridges both learned to play all the songs in the film. To make their playing appear realistic, the actors watched videotapes of Grusin's hands playing the music. See more »


In the discussion in the car immediately after the Polynesian restaurant gig, Jack is wearing his tuxedo. They were wearing Hawaiian shirts on the gig however. See more »


Susie Diamond: [singing] It's really killing that he's so willing to make whoopee.
See more »


Jingle Bells
Performed by Ellie Raab
Written by James Pierpont (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

Strips away the masks and goes straight for the soul.....
7 January 2005 | by (Conn) – See all my reviews

There is no way I could possibly give Baker Boys anything less then a 10, even though as far as personal enjoyment goes, I had some problems with it. Yet, without a doubt the fact remains that this movie, on many levels is extraordinary.(not OK or good-extraordinary.) I Personally am very surprised there aren't a lot more comments on here about Baker Boys.

Obviously, Michelle as well as the Bridges brothers were fantastic. But most have said that so I won't get into that to much. I was very impressed(and a bit awed) by this screenplay and how incredible, not just the dialogue was, but the mannerisms, the little "back and Fourths" and quirks of each person-the writing was way above merely being good. Beyond admiration, however, I was touched by the writer's ability to capture the world of entertainment and music so perfectly. This is a movie where, (after Suzy, frank and Jack), the music and world these people live in, becomes the fourth main character of the movie. And anyone who has lived in a similar reality at anytime in their life, will feel like their seeing old friends....

My viewing experience was not perhaps the most fun I've ever had, for two simple reasons. One, because I, like many others, will concede this movie moves extremely slowly and unfortunately slow movingness in a movie is one thing that's always been a problem for me. Second, this movie is draped in nostalgia and made me feel more sad then anything else when it was over. The gloom I felt however, was also coupled with knowing I just watched a really well done movie-so it was gloom mixed with admiration, sort of like listening to Pink Floyd.

It takes time to get into Baker Boys, it's a slow burn not an immediate rush. It is one of the most nostalgic pictures I've ever Seen. People have mentioned 70's, 80's I'd say those periods and even earlier. There's an old style glamor coupled with a bittersweet sleepy nostalgia-and anyone who has experienced the stuff of nighttime, and neon lights, will be back in that place again whether they want to be there or not. That's entertainment.

23 of 26 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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