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Bartleby (2001)

 -  Comedy | Drama | Mystery  -  10 March 2001 (USA)
6.4
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 1,451 users   Metascore: 48/100
Reviews: 34 user | 31 critic | 19 from Metacritic.com

A clueless boss has no idea what to do with his mundane office worker whose refusal of duties only gets worse each passing minute.

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(story), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: Bartleby (2001)

Bartleby (2001) on IMDb 6.4/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
Rocky
...
Frank Waxman
...
Book Publisher
...
The Mayor
Greta Danielle Newgren ...
Boss's Date
...
Landlord
Josh Kornbluth ...
Nick Scoggin ...
Street Philosopher
Stoney Burke ...
Soup Kitchen Server
Terry Allen Jones ...
New Tenant
Stu Klitsner ...
Professor Bum (as Stuart Klitsner)
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Storyline

At a public records office, a seemingly normal boss has hired a new employee named Bartleby. Bartleby however, is eccentric and with each passing day, he begins to refuse his boss' orders which only gets worse. Eventually, the boss finds himself clueless as to what to do about Bartleby as he discovers even stranger things about him. Written by Mystic80

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

I would prefer not to.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Mystery

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sexual content | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

10 March 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Bartleby at the Office  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$14,599 (USA) (24 May 2002)

Gross:

$141,367 (USA) (23 August 2002)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Dick Martin's final acting performance. See more »

Goofs

When the boss's date is straddling him in his office, sometimes her hair is wrapped in a scarf and sometimes it's not. See more »

Quotes

Bartleby: I would prefer not to.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Before the opening credits begin, viewers are given a portrait and short biography of Herman Melville, upon whose story the film is loosely based. See more »

Connections

Version of Bartleby ou Les hommes au rebut (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

Phantasie #3 In D Minor
Written by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (as Mozart)
Background music on piano by Nancy Spottiswoode
See more »

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User Reviews

I'd prefer to see this film again...
30 November 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I loved this film and I cannot believe how so few critics liked it. What were they thinking? Apparently one critic thought since it was based on a short story that the film should be shorter. Of course, once one critic says its too long, every other critic has to agree. I guess David Mamet is an exception to the rule. Bartleby is not too long. It deserves it's running time so that we can absorb the story more closely. When we hear Bartleby repeat the same words: "I'd prefer not to" we are not given any explanation for the comment but yet it becomes extremely poignant. Eventually everyone in the office begins to use the word "prefer" and we see how Bartleby has affected the workplace like a disease. The film is very bizarre particularly because of the way the boss reacts to Bartleby. Instead of just firing the guy for not doing his job, he tries to reason with him. Eventually Barlteby gets in an even more bizarre predicament that has even more to do with just "prefering not to" work. The boss is obsessed with Bartleby and the film turns very Kafkaesque. We see a capitalist scenario where people topple on another for greed, power and respect. The film is based on the short story "Bartleby the Scrivener" by Herman Melville. It was appropriate to mention the source because the story seems very relevant not only to our modern culture but also to what Melville went after writing Moby Dick. The film also has a wonderful score with a Theramin instrument and a brilliant cinematography.


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