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Johnny Stecchino (1991)

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1:47 | Trailer
A kindhearted but bumbling idiot who likes to steal bananas, is passed off for a snitch hiding from the mob.

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3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Franco Volpi ...
Ivano Marescotti ...
Turi Scalia ...
Loredana Romito ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Salvatore Borghese ...
Ignazio (as Sal Borgese)
Gaetano Campisi ...
Alessandro De Santis ...
Giulio Donnini ...
Domenico Minutoli ...
Georgia O'Brien ...
Moglie del ministro (as Giorgia O'Brien)
Ignazio Pappalardo ...
Gigliola Reina
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Storyline

Good hearted but not very wordly-wise, Dante is happy driving the school bus for a group of mentally handicapped children, while feeling he is somehow missing out on life and love. So he is very excited when after nearly being knocked down by her car he meets Maria, who seems immediately enamoured of him. He is soon invited to her sumptuous Palermo villa, little suspecting that this is part of a plot. He bears an amazing likeness to Maria's stool-pigeon gangster husband and it would be convenient for them if the mobster, in the shape of Dante, was seen to be dead and buried. Written by Jeremy Perkins <jwp@aber.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Sometimes a banana is just a banana !

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and drug related humor | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

24 October 1991 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Johnny Toothpick  »

Box Office

Gross:

$574,392 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Johnny Stecchino and wife Maria who are played by Roberto Benigni and Nicholetta Braschi who are married in real life. See more »

Goofs

In a scene in the basement, where the real Johnny is talking with his lawyer, he doesn't have the mole on his right side. That mole is significant, because it's the only thing that's different between him and Dante. See more »

Quotes

Maria: Santa Cleopatra.
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Connections

Referenced in Dead Man's Dream (2002) See more »

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User Reviews

Funny film showing off Roberto Benigni's comic genius with elements of Marx Brothers and Mr. Bean
22 May 2004 | by (Durham, NC (USA)) – See all my reviews

I just watched the 1991 Italian movie "Johnny Stecchino" (or "Johnny Toothpick") on video. One of my all-time favorite films is "La Vita è bella" ("Life is Beautiful", 1997), another film that Roberto Benigni also directed, co-wrote, and played the lead role in. When I saw a preview of Benigni's comedy "Johnny Stecchino", I had to see the movie.

Benigni is truly a gifted man with comic elements that remind me in this film of the Marx Brothers in physicality and Mr. Bean in amazing simple ignorance. He plays a dual role. As Dante, a bus driver for a group of retarded young adults, he is hopelessly clueless and the highlight of his daily routine seems to be playing a silly trick (every day?! won't the fruit sellers catch on?!) resulting in his stealing a banana for his breakfast. He also plays a mafioso type, Johnny Stecchino, who has snitched on his fellow criminals and is now hiding for fear of his life.

Dante runs into lovely Maria (Nicoletta Braschi) who is really Johnny's wife, but she feigns an inexplicable attraction for Dante. She invites Dante to her grand villa in Palermo (Sicily), where we understand her true plot to have the lookalike simpleton killed so she can live happily with her Johnny.

The film is a comedy of misunderstandings with scenes of stolen bananas, introducing a shocked Roman Catholic Cardinal to cocaine (mistakenly as a diabetic medicine), the two look-alikes running into each other and the criminal pretending to be a mirror to keep himself hidden, a group of seeming mafiosi being led by Dante in singing a children's song enunciating the sounds that various animals make (is this an inside Italian joke, as this reminds me of the 1991 Italian film "Caro Diario" - see <http://us.imdb.com/title/tt0109382/usercomments-12> ?!), and more. Though I wish that Johnny didn't use offensive language, it was otherwise a zany and funny film showing off Benigni's comic genius. Santa Cleopatra!

--Dilip Barman, May 21, 2004


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