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Bringing Down the House (2003)

PG-13 | | Comedy | 7 March 2003 (USA)
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When a lonely guy meets a woman on the internet who happens to be in prison, she breaks out to be with him, and proceeds to wreak havoc on his middle-class life.

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4,164 ( 2,379)
4 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Widow
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Ed Tobias
Aengus James ...
Mike
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Widow's Bodyguard
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Widow's Bodyguard
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Storyline

Peter Sanderson is a divorced, straight-laced, uptight attorney who still loves his ex-wife and can't figure out what he did wrong to make her leave him. However, Peter's trying to move on, and he's smitten with a brainy, bombshell barrister he's been chatting with online. However, when she comes to his house for their first face-to-face, she isn't refined, isn't Ivy League, and isn't even a lawyer. Instead, it's Charlene, a prison escapee who's proclaiming her innocence and wants Peter to help her clear her name. But Peter wants nothing to do with her, prompting the loud and shocking Charlene to turn Peter's perfectly ordered life upside down, jeopardizing his effort to get back with his wife and won a billion dollar client. Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Bring it. March 7. See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for language, sexual humor and drug material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 March 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

In the Houze  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$33,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$31,101,026 (USA) (7 March 2003)

Gross:

$132,541,238 (USA) (25 July 2003)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Producers wanted the slang that was spoken in the movie to be current and relevant to the time period in which the movie was released. This proved to be difficult as words take on different meaning to become Ebonics almost everyday. (Whatever words they used during filming might not have been in circulation by the time the film was released.) In order to play it safe, some of the Ebonics spoken in the movie was made up by the actors on the spot. See more »

Goofs

When Peter is preparing to meet Charlene for the first time, he opens the glass refrigerator door and the reflections of the cameraman and another man can be seen. See more »

Quotes

Peter Sanderson: You are such an ass...
[drinks water]
Peter Sanderson: ... set to this company.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Thanks to residents of McCadden Place. See more »

Connections

Featured in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #19.64 (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Rock Star
(2002)
Written by Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo
Performed by N.E.R.D.
Courtesy of Virgin Records America, Inc.
Under license from EMI Film & TV Music
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User Reviews

 
You got me straight-trippin' Steve!
13 June 2003 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

The arguments and opinions of many a film fan and film critic persist about Steve Martin's current position in Hollywood. Many of his doubters believe he is past it, his films becoming horribly run of the mill, turgid and, ultimately, unfunny. The opinions are jointly contributing to the downfall of a once treasured idol. But some have stood by him, myself included, through the thick black cloud that have rested over the white-haired maestro during the last few years of his illustrious career. And with his latest return to our screens, he's back to prove once and for all, that the wild and crazy guy is here to stay.

The film sees Martin as lawyer Peter Sanderson, recent divorcee and top-dog at his law firm, who now at the age of god-only-knows, decides to ditch his now "whack" existence, and goes 'net surfing for the perfect woman. He apparently strikes gold with a sex, slim blonde laywer he meets in a chat-room. But he is taken by surprise when his date arrives in the sexy, big-boned, brassy form of escaped convict Charlene (Queen Latifah). Entering his life with a strut that would make Oprah blush, Charlene attempts to convince Peter to re-open her case and help her clear her name. That's not before turning his life upside-down, and posing as his kids' nanny tries to help Peter reclaim that what he so dearly yearns for, his family and wife. How, ahem, sweet. And with all the tomfoolery that ensues comes a girl-on-girl "bitch-slapping" session between Charlene and Peter's sister-in-law, a drunken night of dancing and sexual awakening (believe me boys, you've never seen it this way before), and gangster parties louder than Martin's legendary bonnet.

Standing up to its title, "House" really is a treat. Martin, although not in full-on "wild and crazy guy" mode, is on typically top, crowd-pleasing form. His portrayal as the life-searching, middle-aged, toffee-nosed twit is inspired, managing to mix the side-splittingly funny with the touching and poignant to brilliant effect, recalling such affecting form he showed in "Parenthood" and "Bowfinger". Latifah, meanwhile, shows that she has the potential for greatness. her larger-than-life performance is uproarious, bringing charisma and buoyancy to a largely one-dimensional character. She is also quiet the vixen too. The support from Eugene Levy is also first-class. Playing Peter's best mate, who is "straight trippin'" over Charlene, Levy steals practically every scene he appears in, with his dead-pan humour and flawless timing providing the some of the films most painfully funny scenes.

The overall quality of the film is pretty standard stuff. The plot is nothing we haven't seen a thousand times before. The writer and director, while both efficient, don't really add anything fresh and exciting to the buddy comedy genre here. That said, when the films funny, it's an absolute hoot, with the cast stealing the show with marvellous chemistry, and giving us three of best comedic turns you're likely to see all year. Delightful **** (out of FIVE)


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RACIST butterfinger
my favourite line, how about you? Kindella
He shudda ended up with Charlene because... denx
Racial? Why typecast? laurinK
ATTENTION!!!!!! PEOPLE WHO HAVE SEEN THIS MOVIE!!!! simpsonskid125s
Why did Steve Martin do this film? niquems
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