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The Out of Towners (1970)

G | | Comedy | 28 May 1970 (USA)
An Ohio sales executive accepts a higher position within the company and travels to New York City with his wife for his job interview but things go wrong from the start.

Director:

Arthur Hiller

Writer:

Neil Simon
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Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jack Lemmon ... George Kellerman
Sandy Dennis ... Gwen Kellerman
Sandy Baron ... TV Man
Anne Meara ... Woman in Police Station
Robert Nichols Robert Nichols ... Man in Airplane
Ann Prentiss Ann Prentiss ... Airline Stewardess
Ron Carey ... Cab Driver - Boston
Philip Bruns ... Officer Meyers (as Phil Bruns)
Graham Jarvis ... Murray
Carlos Montalbán Carlos Montalbán ... Cuban Diplomat (as Carlos Montalban)
Robert King Robert King ... Agent in Boston
Johnny Brown ... Waiter - Train
Dolph Sweet ... Police Sergeant
Thalmus Rasulala ... Police Officer (as Jack Crowder)
Jon Korkes ... Looter
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Storyline

George and Gwen Kellerman live in the small, quiet town of Twin Oaks, Ohio with their two young children and pet dog. George has a strong sense of what is right and wrong, especially as it applies to himself and Gwen, but he still looks to her for validation. Working for a plastics company, George believes he is a shoo-in for the company's Vice-President of Sales, New York Division job, a position located in New York City. George is looking forward to their future life in New York City, with all the amenities and benefits living in the big city has to offer. For George's 9 am interview, George and Gwen plan on taking a flight that lands in New York at 8 pm the evening before, which gives them time for dinner at New York's finest restaurant, The Four Seasons, and a comfortable night's stay at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel before the interview. But nothing on this trip goes according to plan. In fact, what can go wrong, does. Because of circumstances, it even looks as if George may miss his... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

When they take you for an out-of-towner, they really take you.

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

28 May 1970 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Out-of-Towners See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Jalem Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jack Lemmon was almost killed in the manhole explosion scene. The blast was much stronger than anticipated, and instead of only lifting the manhole cover a few inches up and away from the hole, it threw it several feet into the air. A few seconds later, it falls hard in the ground, very close to Jack Lemmon's head. The actor was then hit in his left leg when the cover bounced, and although startled and in pain, he stayed in character. That shot was used in the final film. See more »

Goofs

During the opening credits, scenes of NYC are interspersed with scenes that are supposed to be in suburban Ohio. The shots were of easily identified landmarks (clock tower, Gerry duckpond, etc) in Roslyn, NY. See more »

Quotes

Gwen Kellerman: George, what are we doing wrong? We can't ride, we can't walk, we can't eat, we can't pray.
George Kellerman: Well, we can think. As long as we got our brains, we can think.
Gwen Kellerman: Oh, they'll get that too, George. You'll see.
See more »

Alternate Versions

There are two different available versions of this film. One which is shown on television (American Movie Classics), features music in certain spots of the movie, and the title song is the theme used in the night driving scenes in the picture. The other version, on home video, features slighly different songs through the picture and a title song which is used at the end in all versions. See more »

Connections

Remade as The Out-of-Towners (1999) See more »

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User Reviews

 
"I've got all your names and your addresses"
31 May 2008 | by ackstasisSee all my reviews

I sat down at my computer, intent on writing a brief review of 'The Out of Towners (1970).' I figured it would take about thirty minutes to complete the review, and so planned my night accordingly. At first everything went to plan, and I remained on schedule; then – with a dull droning sound, like that of a whimpering animal – my computer suddenly took it upon itself to shut down for no apparent reason. With a light curse, I leaned across and rebooted it, and this time we got as far as the Windows welcome screen. Then the lights flickered brightly, and I was suddenly plunged into darkness; the power was out. Reflecting that perhaps it was only a problem with my own fusebox, I stepped out and circled around to the back of the house, where I fumbled somewhat pathetically with a few of the electrical dials. Just as I was heading inside, the power clicked back on, something in the fusebox sparked, and, before long, my entire home was ablaze… and nary a firetruck in sight.

'The Out of Towners (1970)' might just be the most frustrating film I've ever seen. Whatever can go wrong will go wrong, and at the worst possible time, in the worst possible way. For a cocky businessman (Jack Lemmon) and his neglected wife (Sandy Dennis), a meticulously-planned trip to New York City is first disrupted by a seemingly-minor delay, which gradually blossoms into a fully-fledged urban disaster. With an important business interview scheduled for 9:00AM the following morning, George Kellerman must endure every difficulty known to Mankind, including the input of mousy wife, Gwen, with whom he is forced to form a shaky alliance. Flight delays, lost baggage, monsoon weather, muggings, kidnappings, city-wide transit strikes, vicious dogs, gas explosions – nothing is neglected, and George shouts himself hoarse throughout the proceedings, declaring his intentions to sue everybody whom he perceives as having contributed to his awful string of bad luck. Even God has seemingly neglected the pair, who are unceremoniously dismissed from a church by an unapologetic news camera crew.

Lemmon and Dennis are very entertaining in the main roles, and the various supporting performances complement the story perfectly. It's interesting to note how the husband-and-wife relationship shifts constantly as they are confronted by each new setback: at first, George is rather dismissive of his wife, using her primarily to "verify" facts to be later used in the courtroom. Though she subsequently commits some rather foolish acts, such as handing over George's $200 watch to a strange caped man, the couple do eventually acquire a mutual respect towards each other. Neil Simon's story might also be interpreted as a critique of modern society, in which citizens in the bustling metropolises are unwilling to offer help to those in need of their assistance. Burdened by his own hefty share of difficulties, George is quickly consumed by the selfishness of the city and comes to care only for his own wellbeing. Gwen, however, retains her sense of moral rectitude and pauses to care for a lost boy in Central Park. Remind me never to go to New York.


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