6.1/10
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349 user 76 critic

The Cable Guy (1996)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama, Thriller | 14 June 1996 (USA)
A lonely and disturbed cable guy raised on television just wants a new friend, but his target, a designer, rejects him, with bad consequences.

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3,697 ( 109)

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3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Medieval Times Host
Harry O'Reilly ...
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Keith Gibbs ...
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Storyline

Steven Kovak has been kicked out of his apartment by his girlfriend. Steven has a new apartment, and decides to slip the cable guy (Chip) $50 for free cable. Steven then fakes an interest in Chip's line of work. However Chip takes this to heart trying to become Steven's best bud. When Steven no longer wants to be Chips friend the man who can do it all goes on an all out assault to ruin Steven's life. In the backdrop is the delicate sub-plot of the trial of a former kid star for murdering his brother. Written by Wayne Jamieson <jamtin@OntheNet.com.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

There's No Such Thing as Free Cable See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for dark thematic elements and crude humor | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

14 June 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cable Guy  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$47,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$19,806,226 (USA) (14 June 1996)

Gross:

$60,154,431 (USA) (30 August 1996)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(8 channels)|

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Jim Carrey was negotiating his $20 million salary for the film, he insisted that his attorney and two managers all wear Ace Ventura dressing gowns so as not to lose their sense of perspective. See more »

Goofs

"The odds that Steven would have been in jail (the prison scene) for "receiving stolen property" are slim to none, and after an interview Steven would have likely been cited at the police station and given a court date. Some states have a separate but similar charge called "possessing stolen property" or "possession of stolen property." The distinguishing factor here is when the accused learned the goods were stolen. If he knew at the time he acquired the property, then it is receipt of stolen property. It is possession of stolen property if he only learned the property was stolen after he obtained it. All Steven had to do was tell the police who Chip Douglas really was, and Steven would have been sent home and it would have been The Cable Guy who would have been arrested." ... but the Police Officers and Guards seen in these scenes are all "Preferred Customers" and they clearly went outside the law to lock up Steven at the request of Chip. Since this is still a comedy film, the suspension of disbelief is held when it is acknowledged at least twice in these scenes that Chip is manipulating the authorities with his connections via long-time cable hook-ups; and we'd seen the arresting cop at the karaoke party earlier in the film, too. See more »

Quotes

Chip Douglas: Free cable is the ultimate aphrodisiac.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Columbia logo at the beginning of the movie segues into static from Steven's cable TV. See more »

Connections

Spoofs Psycho (1960) See more »

Soundtracks

My Three Sons Theme
Written by Frank De Vol
Courtesy of Dot Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Sorely underrated, and a personal favourite.
6 July 2003 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

This review is not coming from someone whose top ten films consist primarily of Farrelly Bros. films, nor do I have a particular liking for anyone involved in the film.

First of all, hats off to Jim Carrey. I read under the trivia section that his role wasn't originally intended for him, but be honest; can you see anyone else playing the cable guy? He was brilliant. He takes the film from what would have been a run-of-the-mill comedy, to levels of greatness, and anyone that thinks I'm being too kind either doesn't like Carrey (it was the film that made me do a complete turn around), or needs to see the film again.

The overall tone of the film is a bit of a mix, it gets darker as the story goes along, but the jokes never mollify. I mean, it's a stalker story with clever film and television references... It's really hard to pin down the identity of this film.

This ranks as Stiller's best directorial performance to date. Reality Bites and Zoolander are good, but not great. This film expresses a lot more of his prowess. I see him as a very capable film maker, he is just yet to make his mark with something more widely appreciated.

The Cable Guy is by no means a classic film, and admittedly, you wont see it on any AFI lists anytime soon, but there is no denying the quality effort that was put into this film by all of it's contributors. And there are many of them -- check out all of those cameos! Chip Douglas' (Carrey) contrived relationship with his customer Steven (Broderick) ranks as one of the most memorable in recent history. It has set a precedent in black comedies that has scarcely been touched since.

I would have seen this film at least 30 times by now and it still seems fresh, and this has lead me to believe that the film probably needs to be viewed more than once for it to completely appreciated. I only wish that there were more people out there that 'get' this gem.

This concludes our broadcast day. Click.


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