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The Big Steal (1990)

6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 659 users  
Reviews: 11 user | 1 critic

To impress a girl a shy teenaged boy buys a used Jaguar.

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Title: The Big Steal (1990)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Danny Clark
...
Joanna Johnson
...
Desmond Clark
...
Mark Jorgensen
Angelo D'Angelo ...
Vangeli Petrakis
Tim Robertson ...
Desmond Johnson
Maggie King ...
Edith Clark
...
Gordon Farkas
Sheryl Munks ...
Pam Schaeffer
Lise Rodgers ...
Mrs. Johnson
Frankie J. Holden ...
Frank
Mark Hennessy ...
Jimmy
Roy Edmunds ...
George
Mike Nikol ...
Dougy
Andrew Spence ...
Car pound policeman
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Storyline

Danny wants two things in life more than anything else, one is a Jaguar and the other is Joanna Johnson. After Danny's parents give him their beloved Nissan Cedric, Danny works up the courage to ask Joanna out on a date.... One problem! He tells her that he owns a Jaguar, and to prove otherwise, he trades in the Cedric for an early model Jag. At the car yard he is conned into believing he is getting the deal of the century by the salesman, Gordon "Farkas". Written by Glenn Stewart <glenn_stewart@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

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Details

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Release Date:

20 September 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Grande Trapaça  »

Filming Locations:


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Did You Know?

Trivia

This picture was one of fifty Australian films selected for preservation as part of the National Film and Sound Archive of Australia's Kodak / Atlab Cinema Collection Restoration Project. See more »

Goofs

After Gordon collects his camera from his car, the gang are removing the engine from Gordon's Jag despite the fact we see the engine has already been removed, prior to Gordon collecting his camera. See more »

Quotes

Desmond Johnson: [to Danny] And don't you try touching her breasts.
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Soundtracks

I'll Never Have Anything More
Written by Don McGlashan and Harry Sinclair
Performed by The Front Lawn
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User Reviews

 
The Best Australian Film Ever
16 July 2007 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

I first this movie as an early teen and immediately identified with Danny Clark. I have watched this movie numerous times since and still feel this eclipses the Castle, the Odd Angry Shot and Malcolm as the greatest Aussie film ever.

Essentially, Danny Clark (Ben Mendehlson) wants a car and a girl ... and both seem very unlikely.

This movie follows the nervous and unsure Danny in his attempts to attain both the girl and the car at the same time but what follows is a complete comedy of errors and schemes.

Ably assisted by his two best mates, Van (Remember those days when Greeks drove Monaro's?) and Mark, Danny conceives a plan to get even with the rogue car dealer that has "ruined his life". The deception of the car dealer, Gordon Farkas, is probably no surprise to any of us who have trawled Parramatta Road in Sydney and the like in trying to find that perfect set of wheels! Danny must also find recompense and we follow his valiant attempts to win over the gorgeous Joanna Johnson. Claudia Karvan is one of the most gorgeous and attractive Australian actresses and watching this as a young teen had me instantly falling in love with her too! The characters are identifiable to all of us that watch this movie and we immediately identify with the underdog from that first scene. His off-beat parents add that real quirky Aussie humour we all know and love and along with the over protective future father-in-law, Danny is sure to have a hard time attaining his girl.

For me, however, it was the performance of Steve Bisley which made this movie. As exaggerated as his performance may seem it is not unlike any of the dodgy car dealers you see operate their 'craft' on places like Parramatta Road. Indeed, Steve Bisley notes in commentary that he spent weekends at these yards to research the role and almost got sucked into buying a car himself! This is without doubt one of those born roles not unlike Burt Reynolds in Boogie Nights and it would seem Bisley is doing the car industry a disservice by staying an actor!

The soundtrack is perfect and songs like 'Dancing in the Storm' by Boom Crash Opera are memorable in being music of the time and place of this movie. I still get goosebumps watching the scene when this song comes on and sadly, have even tried to recreate this by playing the same song in similar situations!

My sad personal life aside, this movie has affected me and many Aussie guys and without a doubt, perfectly describes the adventures of our teens. The saddest thing of all is, you never learn and still get sucked in every time you buy a car or get a girl!


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