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Bullets Over Broadway (1994)

R  |   |  Comedy, Crime  |  18 January 1995 (USA)
7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 26,967 users  
Reviews: 80 user | 63 critic

In 1920s New York, a struggling playwright is forced to cast a mobster's talentless girlfriend in his latest drama in order to get it produced.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Malgorzata Zajaczkowska ...
Lili (as Margaret Sophie Stein)
Charles Cragin ...
Rifkin
Nina von Arx ...
Josette (as Nina Sonya Peterson)
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Storyline

Set in 1920's New York City, this movie tells the story of idealistic young playwright David Shayne. Producer Julian Marx finally finds funding for the project from gangster Nick Valenti. The catch is that Nick's girl friend Olive Neal gets the part of a psychiatrist, and Olive is a bimbo who could never pass for a psychiatrist as well as being a dreadful actress. Agreeing to this first compromise is the first step to Broadway's complete seduction of David, who neglects longtime girl friend Ellen. Meanwhile David puts up with Warner Purcell, the leading man who is a compulsive eater, Helen Sinclair, the grand dame who wants her part jazzed up, and Cheech, Olive's interfering hitman / bodyguard. Eventually, the playwright must decide whether art or life is more important. Written by Reid Gagle

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The New Comedy From Woody Allen! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

18 January 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Disparos sobre Broadway  »

Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$13,383,737 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Rob Reiner portrays "Sheldon", a name featured in Reiner's When Harry Met Sally... (1989). See more »

Goofs

When Cheech and David walk through a neighborhood, the corner has an obvious, modern handicap curb-cut. See more »

Quotes

[Helen complains about her role]
Helen Sinclair: She's dowdy. Sid, the ingenue has all the hot lines. Even the female psychiatrist is a better role.
Sid Loomis: But the role of Sylvia Poston is the lead.
Helen Sinclair: "Sylvia Poston." Even the *name* reeks of Orbach's. I do Electra. I do Lady Macbeth. I do plays by Noel and Phil Barry, or at least Max Anderson.
See more »


Soundtracks

Singin' The Blues Till My Daddy Comes Home
Music by Con Conrad and J. Russel Robinson
Lyrics by Sam Lewis & Joe Young
Performed by Bix Beiderbecke
Courtesy of Columbia Records
By Arrangement with Sony Music Licensing
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Mobsters and thespians
25 April 2005 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

Woody Allen had the inspired idea to let another actor played what would have been a tailor-made he wrote for himself. As a director, Mr. Allen has always done well. Of course, there are exceptions, but in "Bullets over Broadway" show an inspired Mr. Allen doing what he does best. This comedy, written in collaboration with Douglas McGrath, is a happy take on a situation that only this director would have been able to create.

We are shown two different worlds. In one, the roaring twenties gangsters have the control of all illegal activities in Manhattan. On the other, we meet an idealistic writer, David Shayne, who wants to have his play produced. Enter the capo Nick Valenti. This man has enough money to buy his current paramour, the dizzy Olive Neal, whatever her little heart desires. Thus, the vehicle chosen is the drama David has written.

Thus begins a frantic comedy of errors where the theater and the mob intermingle with funny results. We watch as the play gets produced on Broadway how the different factions come together, each one with a different idea as to what to do with the play.

The cast is first rate. John Cusack, as the ambitious playwright, does some of his best work in showing what this man is going through. Dianne Wiest, one of the most accomplished actresses around, makes a splash with her take on Helen Sinclair, the first lady of the American theatah! Jennifer Tully is excellent as Olive Neal, the girl from the provinces with high aspirations, but no talent.

Chaz Palmintieri, as Cheech, the mobster that understands what's wrong with the play is hilarious. The late Joe Venturelli was born to play his mobster Nick Valente. Jack Warden is perfect as the producer. Tracey Ullman and Jim Broadbent are simply marvelous as the cast members of the play in production. Mary Louise Parker and Harvey Fierstein, Rob Reiner are also seen in smaller roles.

"Bullets over Broadway", as most of Mr. Allen's films has a great musical score of the jazz songs of the era. Mr. Allen, in taking a seat behind the camera, delivers one of his best and funniest films to date.


17 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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