7.4/10
2,993
70 user 26 critic

A Thousand Clowns (1965)

A middle-aged iconoclast, doggedly avoiding the tedium of employment and conventional life, faces the prospect of losing custody of his young ward.

Director:

Fred Coe

Writers:

Herb Gardner (screenplay), Herb Gardner (based on his original play)
Reviews
Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

In the early twentieth century, an artistically talented young man living in an English coal mining town is inhibited by his domineering and emotionally manipulative mother.

Director: Jack Cardiff
Stars: Trevor Howard, Dean Stockwell, Wendy Hiller
Ship of Fools (1965)
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A varied group of passengers boarding a ship bound for pre-WWII Germany represents a microcosm of early 1930s society.

Director: Stanley Kramer
Stars: Vivien Leigh, Simone Signoret, José Ferrer
The Dresser (1983)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Personal Assistant Norman (Sir Tom Courtenay) of deteriorating veteran actor Sir (Albert Finney) struggles to get him through a difficult performance of King Lear.

Director: Peter Yates
Stars: Albert Finney, Tom Courtenay, Edward Fox
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Rachel is a 35 year old school teacher who has no man in her life and lives with her mother. When a man from the big city returns and asks her out, she begins to have to make decisions about her life and where she wants it to go.

Director: Paul Newman
Stars: Joanne Woodward, James Olson, Kate Harrington
Drama | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

In Australia's Outback during the early twentieth century, the impoverished Carmody family lives a nomadic life out of their wagon, but the mom and son want to settle, while the dad is against it.

Director: Fred Zinnemann
Stars: Deborah Kerr, Robert Mitchum, Peter Ustinov
Comedy | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Without hostile intent, a Soviet submarine runs aground off New England. Men are sent for a boat, but many villagers go into a tizzy, risking bloodshed.

Director: Norman Jewison
Stars: Carl Reiner, Eva Marie Saint, Alan Arkin
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An ambitious young accountant plots to wed a wealthy factory owner's daughter, despite falling in love with a married older woman.

Director: Jack Clayton
Stars: Laurence Harvey, Simone Signoret, Heather Sears
Darling (1965)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Beautiful, but amoral, model Diana Scott (Julie Christie) sleeps her way to the top of the London fashion scene at the height of the Swinging Sixties.

Director: John Schlesinger
Stars: Julie Christie, Dirk Bogarde, Laurence Harvey
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

In 1858 France, Bernadette, an adolescent peasant girl, has a vision of "a beautiful lady" in the city dump. She never claims it to be anything other than this, but the townspeople all ... See full summary »

Director: Henry King
Stars: Jennifer Jones, Charles Bickford, William Eythe
Wilson (1944)
Certificate: Passed Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A chronicle of the political career of US President Woodrow Wilson.

Director: Henry King
Stars: Alexander Knox, Charles Coburn, Geraldine Fitzgerald
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Romantic comedy about a pair of clandestine lovers in a London-Spain tryst.

Director: Melvin Frank
Stars: George Segal, Glenda Jackson, Paul Sorvino
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Elderly Mrs. Ross lives alone in her meager flat, scraping by on government assistance even as she claims to have great wealth. After finding stolen money she is victimized, making it necessary to find her support in her declining years.

Director: Bryan Forbes
Stars: Edith Evans, Nanette Newman, Harry Baird
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Jason Robards ... Murray
Barbara Harris ... Sandra
Martin Balsam ... Arnold
Gene Saks ... Leo
William Daniels ... Albert
Philip Bruns ... The Man in the Restaurant (as Phil Bruns)
John McMartin ... The Man in the Office (as John MacMartin)
Barry Gordon ... Nick Burns / Wilbur Malcome Burns / Theodore Burns / Raphael Sabatini / Dr. Morris Fishbein / Woodrow Burns / Chevrolet Burns / Big Sam Burns / Lefty Burns
Edit

Storyline

12-year-old Nick lives with his Uncle Murray, a Mr. Micawber-like Dickensian character who keeps hoping something won't turn up. What turns up is a social worker who falls in love with Murray and a bit in love with Nick. As the child-welfare people try to force Murray to become a conventional man (the price they demand for allowing him to keep Nick), the nephew, who until now has gloried in his uncle's iconoclastic approach to life, tries to play mediator. But when he succeeds, he is alarmed by the uncle's willingness to cave in to society in order to save the relationship. Written by Warlen Bassham <wcb@zso.dec.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

...IT'S A LIFT FOR THE SPIRITS See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 September 1966 (Finland) See more »

Also Known As:

Mil payasos See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Harrell See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Two of the names Nick adopted temporarily are those of specific real people. Dr. Morris Fishbein was the very controversial editor of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) from 1924 to 1950. In 1947 Time Magazine described him as "the nation's most ubiquitous, the most widely maligned, and perhaps most influential medico." Rafael Sabatini was an author, and a few of his most popular novels were adapted for film. These films include Captain Blood (1935) and Scaramouche (1952). See more »

Goofs

After Leo leaves the apartment, two different cardboard cutouts of him are used, with different facial appearances. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Murray: [shouts at rows of houses] Neighbors, I have an announcement for you. I have never seen such a collection of dirty windows. Now I want to see all of you out there on the fire escape with your Mr. Clean bottles, and let's snap it up!
See more »

Crazy Credits

In opening credits: and introducing Barry Gordon as Nick. In the end credits, Gordon is credited to all the different names his character has tried: Nick Burns, Wilbur Malcome Burns, Theodore Burns, Raphael Sabatini, Dr. Morris Fishbein, Woodrow Burns, Chevrolet Burns, Big Sam Burns and Lefty Burns. In the film, however, he is called Nick, Nicky, and Nicholas. See more »

Connections

References Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm (1938) See more »

Soundtracks

Yes, Sir, That's My Baby
(1925) (uncredited)
Music by Walter Donaldson
Lyrics by Gus Kahn
Sung an played on ukuleles by Jason Robards and Barry Gordon
Also sung and whistled by Jason Robards and Barbara Harris
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A Thousand reasons to love this film!
18 May 1999 | by jayrnjSee all my reviews

Most of us have "favorite" films that we think no one else in the world has seen. You just want to tell everyone to go out and rent it, hoping that they too will say, "Wow, what a movie! I can't believe I've never seen it before!" "A Thousand Clowns" is just such a film. Rarely seen on television, this Oscar nominated (best picture) Oscar winning (best supporting actor/Martin Balsam) film is special in many ways. Superbly cast (child actor Barry Gordon is a must see!) and smartly written. The satire and tragedy blend so well you will be caught laughing and crying at the same time throughout the movie.1000 Thumbs up!


34 of 36 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 70 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed