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Blue in the Face (1995)

 -  Comedy  -  13 October 1995 (USA)
6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 6,821 users   Metascore: 54/100
Reviews: 43 user | 33 critic | 16 from Metacritic.com

Wayne Wang's follow-up movie to Smoke presents a series of improvisational situations strung together to form a pastiche of Brooklyn's diverse ethnicity, offbeat humor, and essential ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Dot (as Roseanne)
Mel Gorham ...
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Bob
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Jerry (as Jose Zuniga)
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The John Lurie National Orchestra ...
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Sharif Rashed ...
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Storyline

Wayne Wang's follow-up movie to Smoke presents a series of improvisational situations strung together to form a pastiche of Brooklyn's diverse ethnicity, offbeat humor, and essential humanity. Many of the same characters inhabiting Auggie Wren's Brooklyn Cigar Store in Smoke return here to expound on their philosophy of smoking, relationships, baseball, New York, and Belgian Waffles. Most of all, this is a movie about living life, off-the-cuff. Written by Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Welcome to the planet Brooklyn. See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and a scene of nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Release Date:

13 October 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Brooklyn Boogie  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$1,275,999 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After initial filming wrapped, Auster and Wang realized that the improvisational concept was not working. The directors requested three more days of additional filming in which all of the scenes were scripted. The scenes with Keith David and Madonna were scripted. See more »

Goofs

Dot bolts the store door to talk with Auggie, then leaves without unlocking it. See more »

Quotes

Man with Strange Glasses: Yes, I am smoking cigarettes and some of my friends have died of them, but I am not downing a quart of Scotch in fifteen minutes. Looked at that way, cigarettes are actually a health tool!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Situations Created in collaboration with THE ACTORS See more »

Connections

Featured in De wereld draait door: Episode #8.48 (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Yemaya
Performed by Celia Cruz
Written by Lino Frias
Published by Hall of Fame Music Co. (BMI)
Celia Cruz appears courtesy of Seeco Records
by arrangement with Timeless Entertainment Corp.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An understated, but brilliant film
14 September 2001 | by (England) – See all my reviews

Blue in the face is a follow up to 'Smoke' a film which I saw recently and very much enjoyed. I thought I'd give this one a try as well.

Like the first film (even more so) this is a collection of beautifully acted, largely improvised vignettes, involving the customers and general passers-by of the Brooklyn based cigar shop run by Auggie (Harvey Keitel). There is a lose storyline involving the relationship between Auggie and his girlfriend Violetta (brilliantly played by Mel Gorham) and the troubled marriage of Vinnie the storeowner and his wife. The store has been a part of the local community for years and when Vinnie gets a very good offer to sell up, it's bound to badly affect a lot of people.

The best moments of the film lie in the documentary style rambling of Brooklyn residents (including Lou Reed) as they describe what it means to them being part of the city, and also the brilliant monologues that some of the characters perform. There are moments of genius in this film. It is very funny in a very understated way, the assembled characters are all eccentric in their own way but totally believable. The dialogue is natural and you get to know and feel for the characters very quickly in to the movie.

I loved this film; I thought it was better than 'Smoke' a film I also liked. 'Blue in the Face' might be harder to get in to for some people, it's improvisational style and lack of structured story might put people off or make them think it's hard to follow, but it isn't. Don't try to make too much sense of what's going on you don't need to. Treat it as a series of snapshots in to the lives of a collection of colourful New Yorkers. Just sit back and watch the characters play out their lives, you'll very soon be engrossed by it.

It was an absolute delight to watch. Not for everyone maybe but definitely for me!


11 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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