48 user 13 critic

The Tall Guy (1989)

Dexter King plays straight man to unpleasant comedian Ron Anderson. He falls in love with Kate, a pretty nurse he meets when he is receiving injections for hay fever. When Anderson fires ... See full summary »




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Cast overview, first billed only:
Emil Wolk ...
Joanna Kanska ...
Peter Kelly ...
Tim Barlow ...
Mr. Morrow (as Timothy Barlow)
Hugh Thomas ...
Dr. Karabekian
Charles Augins ...
Peter Brewis ...
Joolia Cappleman ...
Costume Designer


Dexter King plays straight man to unpleasant comedian Ron Anderson. He falls in love with Kate, a pretty nurse he meets when he is receiving injections for hay fever. When Anderson fires him, he acquires the title role in a musical stage version of "The Elephant Man". Kate dumps him when she suspects he is having an affair with a fellow cast member, and he must win her back. Written by Alexander Lum <aj_lum@postoffice.utas.edu.au>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Romance


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

21 September 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

2 metri di allergia  »

Box Office


$510,712 (USA)

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Directorial debut for performer Mel Smith. See more »


Kate and Dexter would not have been able to place ladders against the poster of Ron Anderson; the next scene shows an awning that would have been in the way. See more »


Ron Anderson: Face it, King, you're worthless and weak and the chances of you getting a girlfriend without the aid of a virus which wiped out the entire male population of the planet are frankly pretty remote.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Michael Fitzgerald's full credit in the movie is "Man with vacuum cleaner tube up his bottom." See more »


Featured in The Story of Bean (1997) See more »


La Gazza Ladra (The Thieving Magpie)
Music by Gioachino Rossini
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User Reviews

A Curiosity of a movie in which Richard Curtis and Mel Smith are visibly learning their trade.
31 December 2013 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

Released in 1989 this is a "work in progress" movie for both writer Richard Curtis and Director Mel Smith. Both were to move on to much better things! That said there are weak signals of Curtis's talent later to be fully realised in "Four a Weddings and a Funeral", "Notting Hill" and "Love Actually". But a few good lines does not a coherent movie make and the plot is shallow and the characterisation sketchy at best. Jeff Goldblum's Dexter seems bewildered by everything - not least his subservient position to comic superstar Ron Anderson played with believable malevolence by Rowan Atkinson. Emma Thompson, then just 30, looks lovely and shows her developing talent as a comic actress. The best thing in the film by some way.

Mel Smith's direction drags a bit and it is only in the very funny mock musical "Elephant" - based improbably on the "Elephant Man" - that the film comes to life. The musical is a chance for Smith to satirise the musical genre of the time with references to Les Miserables and especially to the Lloyd-Webber songbook. A Sarah Brightman lookalike does a number straight out of "Phantom" and it's very funny.

The film is quite daring with an explicit sex scene between Thompson and Goldblum that is so energetic that they destroy the former's bedroom, The relationship between the two is a forerunner of Curtis's boy/girl romances in later movies. Always a slip or three between cup and lip!

This is not a great film nor even a very good one. It is worth study as an exercise in how Richard Curtis's talent was first applied in a movie rather than television for which he was previously known (especially for Blackadder).

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