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The Big Lebowski (1998)

R  |   |  Comedy, Crime  |  6 March 1998 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.2/10 from 485,532 users   Metascore: 69/100
Reviews: 1,013 user | 245 critic | 22 from

"The Dude" Lebowski, mistaken for a millionaire Lebowski, seeks restitution for his ruined rug and enlists his bowling buddies to help get it.


, (uncredited)


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Woo, Treehorn Thug
Nihilist #1, Uli Kunkel / 'Karl Hungus'
Nihilist #2, Kieffer
Nihilist #3, Franz
Jimmie Dale Gilmore ...


When "The Dude" Lebowski is mistaken for a millionaire Lebowski, two thugs urinate on his rug to coerce him into paying a debt he knows nothing about. While attempting to gain recompense for the ruined rug from his wealthy counterpart, he accepts a one-time job with high pay-off. He enlists the help of his bowling buddy, Walter, a gun-toting Jewish-convert with anger issues. Deception leads to more trouble, and it soon seems that everyone from porn empire tycoons to nihilists want something from The Dude. Written by J. Lake

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


They figured he was a lazy time wasting slacker. They were right. See more »


Comedy | Crime

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive strong language, drug content, sexuality and brief violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






| | |

Release Date:

6 March 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Big Lebowski  »

Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$5,533,844 (USA) (6 March 1998)


£1,462,880 (UK) (19 June 1998)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The Dude has a habit of repeating phrases he hears from other characters. The George Bush speech "This aggression will not stand" is repeated by the Dude to the Big Lebowski. Brandt tells the Dude that "her life is in your hands", which Dude repeats during the ransom delivery. Walter tells the Dude that "nothing is f###ed"; the Dude repeats it in the limo. Maude Lebowski uses the phrase "Parlance of our times"; Dude repeats this one in the limo as well. The Big Lebowski says he "will not abide another toe!"; at the end of the movie "The Dude abides". He threatens Larry with genital mutilation, like the nihilists did in his bathroom. In fact, many of the main characters do the same thing, except not always with phrases they've heard. For example, the Treehorn thugs say "Do you see what happens, Lebowski?" when Woo is peeing on the rug, and Walter says "Do you see what happens, Larry?" when he is smashing the Corvette. Walter says "The Chinaman is not the issue here!" in the bowling alley, and then, in the next scene, the Big Lebowski says "My wife is not the issue here!". Jesus Quintana uses the phrase "I f### you in the a##", and this is later repeatedly shouted by one of the nihilists, and re-phrased by Walter as "This is what happens when you f### a stranger in the a##!" Perhaps the most repeated phrase, "what the f### are you talking about?" is first used by the Dude in the first bowling scene, and then repeated and paraphrased throughout the movie by the Dude, Walter, Donny and Da Fino (Jon Polito). See more »


While driving down the road, The Dude notices that he is being followed by the blue Volkswagen. The camera shot of the Dude shows a thick layer of dirt on the rear windshield of his car. When the camera cuts to shots of the rear-view mirror to see the Volkswagen, there is no dirt at all on the rear windshield. See more »


[first lines]
The Stranger: [voiceover] Way out west there was this fella... fella I wanna tell ya about. Fella by the name of Jeff Lebowski. At least that was the handle his loving parents gave him, but he never had much use for it himself. Mr. Lebowski, he called himself "The Dude". Now, "Dude" - that's a name no one would self-apply where I come from. But then there was a lot about the Dude that didn't make a whole lot of sense. And a lot about where he lived, likewise. But then again, maybe that's why I ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Baby Wranglers: Howls/Giggles/Marmots See more »


Referenced in Pirated Copy (2004) See more »


Viva Las Vegas
Also Performed by Richard Johnson
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

You can watch it a million times, and yet, it will never get old
28 March 2004 | by (Vail, CO) – See all my reviews

The Big Lebowski is the type of movie that is so funny, and so clever, you want nothing more but to meet the Coen brothers, congratulate them personally for their unique talent, and get inside their heads and find out what makes these two geniuses "tick". The main characters are Jeff Bridges (who plays such broad roles like The Muse, The Contender, and Sea Biscuit), John Goodman (who should have won an oscar for best supporting actor for his character, Walter Sobchak)Juliane Moore (Maude Lebowski)and Steve Buscemi (who is unique in every Coen Brother movie).

The first time I saw this movie, I will admit that I enjoyed it, but did not fully appreciate its level of humor and raw talent. I thought the middle section was a bit too depressing and long. But trust me, this is a movie that gets more funny every time you see it, even if it's your thousandth time seeing it. Its level of comedy, action, brutality, and vulgarity become that much more evident and important.

The characters are brilliantly written by the coen brothers, and, likewise, are brilliantly portrayed by the actors. The Big Lebowski is like no other film. It will make you laugh and it will make you cry. There is no other film such as TBL that is sharp and witty all the way through. One of the Joel and Ethan Coen's best, and one of the movie industry's best comedic film of all time. You want to go see this flick.

565 of 724 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
What was the point..... clarastoria
How the heck did they round up a cast like that mykemu
Not a Pomeranian... lydiaann27
Why does this get labelled as a 'stoner film'? onourway55-236-843584
Dude is nihilist also? CursedChico
The dismembered toe belonged to the Nihilist's girlfriend, right? eyeforbeauty
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