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Big Night (1996)

 -  Drama  -  20 September 1996 (USA)
7.4
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 10,891 users   Metascore: 80/100
Reviews: 78 user | 46 critic | 23 from Metacritic.com

A failing Italian restaurant run by two brothers gambles on one special night to try to save the business.

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Title: Big Night (1996)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Larry Block ...
Man in Restaurant
...
Woman in Restaurant
Andre Belgrader ...
...
...
Loan Officer
...
...
Leo
Pasquale Cajano ...
Alberto N. Pisani
...
Woman Singer
...
Charlie
...
...
Ann
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Storyline

Primo and Secondo are two brothers who have emigrated from Italy to open an Italian restaurant in America. Primo is the irascible and gifted chef, brilliant in his culinary genius, but determined not to squander his talent on making the routine dishes that customers expect. Secondo is the smooth front-man, trying to keep the restaurant financially afloat, despite few patrons other than a poor artist who pays with his paintings. The owner of the nearby Pascal's restaurant, enormously successful (despite its mediocre fare), offers a solution - he will call his friend, a big-time jazz musician, to play a special benefit at their restaurant. Primo begins to prepare his masterpiece, a feast of a lifetime, for the brothers' big night... Written by Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

In love and life, one big night can change everything.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

20 September 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Grande Inauguração  »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,100,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

ITL 143,875,000 (Italy) (7 March 1997)

Gross:

ITL 763,505,000 (Italy) (11 April 1997)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Stanley Tucci, who co-directed Big Night, and Tony Shalhoub have worked together several times including Tucci's followup film The Impostors (1998) and on Shalhoub's Monk TV series. See more »

Goofs

When Bob is talking to Segundo in the Cadillac, his lollipop is alternately in/out of his mouth between shots. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Primo: [offers a taste asking opinion in Italian]
Secondo: What?
Primo: More Salt?
Secondo: No.
[continues chopping]
Primo: Not too fine, eh? Sometimes you cut it too fine, then all you taste is the garlic!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jeopardy!: Episode #28.176 (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Oh Marie
Written by Eduardo Di Capua
Performed by Louis Prima
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User Reviews

 
Cinematic poetry
30 September 2009 | by (Los Angeles, Calif.) – See all my reviews

This movie is like a good poem: it doesn't all make sense, but you love experiencing it, and after you're done you keep thinking about it for days and days.

"Big Night" tells of two Italian brothers trying to succeed as restaurateurs in the 1960s. The bulk of the movie revolves a single "big night" in which they unleash their finest dishes in a culinary extravaganza.

The leads, Shalhoub and Tucci, are joined by Ian Holm (depicting a rival restaurateur) in a really memorable set of performances. All the minor supporting characters are equally endearing and real-to-life. There is a lot of attention given to the food and to its preparation, and the cinematography used to actually depict the meal (and the music superimposed onto it) is fantastically enjoyable. It's like the dishes are actors or characters in the play! The movie's final scene is perhaps deserving of the all-time hall of fame. It plays out over several minutes of complete wordless silence, yet it makes such a lasting impression. Ultimately the scene shows that the movie is not about the food or the striving for success, but about the relationship between these brothers, and that the relationship will outlast any of the trials they are undergoing, no matter how severe.

If you insist on a tidy ending that resolves all the issues, don't look here because the ending is completely hanging. Yet somehow I found it satisfying nevertheless. You'll find yourself recalling scenes and lines from the film for weeks to come.


3 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Big Night ending... happy or sad? number6village
Absolutely Cr*p kalidor-2
Post if you love good food... happiscotsman
Pascal and Gabriella? BrionyTallis
Car salesman... gay? TheLaughingWolf
I can't believe I cooked the whole thing roark-12
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