The Man Who Knew Too Little (1997)

PG  |   |  Action, Comedy, Crime  |  14 November 1997 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 22,861 users  
Reviews: 99 user | 34 critic

Wallace Ritchie is mistaken for a spy and must stop a plot to assassinate international leaders at a banquet.



(novel), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Boris 'The Butcher' Blavasky
Gilbert Embleton
Dr. Ludmilla Kropotkin
Barbara Ritchie
Cliff Parisi ...
Janet Henfrey ...
Ms. Goldstein
Terry O'Neill ...
Isabel Hernández ...
Consuela (as Isabel Hernandez)


An American gets a ticket for an audience participation game in London, then gets involved in a case of mistaken identity. As an international plot unravels around him, he thinks it's all part of the act. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A comedy of ridiculous proportions See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for language, innuendo, comic violence and sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

14 November 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Watch That Man  »

Box Office


$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$4,604,819 (USA) (14 November 1997)


DEM 573,393 (Germany) (5 June 1998)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In the hotel after the interrogation, Boris walks out of the room to call Dr. Kropotkin and says: "Uri, get the rubber sheets... and watch that man," (pointing to Bill Murray's character). "Watch That Man" is the title of the novel on which the movie is based. See more »


When Lori checks her gun, it can clearly be seen that the cartridges visible have been fired. See more »


Hawkins: Spencer, did you flush?
Wallace: I think she's gonna do that, don't you, pal? I'll ask her. Lori!
Hawkins: [Quietly to Daggenhurst] He's talking to her!
Sir Roger Daggenhurst: She's still in the bowl?
Hawkins: Maybe he tried to flush her, but she floated back up!
Sir Roger Daggenhurst: Tell him to flush her! Spencer knows how to deal with floaters.
See more »


References Battle of Britain (1969) See more »


Hully Gully
Written by Fred Smith and Clifford Goldsmith (as Cliff Goldsmith)
Performed by Tommy Kinsman
Courtesy of Mercury Records Ltd.
By Arrangement with Polygram Film & TV Licensing
See more »

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User Reviews

One of the Greatest Comedy Tour De Forces in Film History!
27 December 2004 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

How could so many people miss this amazing performance? Bill Murray pulls off something that hadn't been done since the days of Harold Lloyd: a character who always succeeds despite the fact that he thinks that everything is a game. Like Lloyd's blindfolded wanderings on suspended buildings many stories in the air where he never falls down or gets hurt, Murray triumphs as a super-secret-agent when he thinks the entire thing is a parlor game, a bit of 'real life theatre'. The twists and turns of the plot, the misunderstandings and misinterpretations by everyone around him just add to the giddiness of the whole film. I have rarely been so disappointed when I had to finally concede that it was the end of the story. Give this a second look if you dismissed it as just a silly movie. It's a classic, and one of my 10 best movies of all time.

78 of 90 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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