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Bananas (1971) Poster

(1971)

Trivia

Jump to: Cameo (4)  | Spoilers (1)
Sylvester Stallone appears uncredited as a subway thug. This was one of his earliest film roles, not a cameo. According to website Every Woody Allen Movie, "Allen initially sent Stallone back to the casting agency after deciding he wasn't 'tough-looking' enough. Stallone pleaded with him, and eventually convinced him to change his mind".
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According to the Eric Lax biography, the musicians in the dinner scene at General Vargas' house were actually to be playing instruments, but the rented instruments hadn't arrived, and rather than wait, Woody Allen decided the miming would fit with the tone of the film.
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The majority of the scenes in the film were improvised. When Woody Allen felt he had captured the right shot, he would move on to the next one.
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In an interview, Woody Allen was asked why he named the movie "Bananas". His response: "Because there are no bananas in it." A reference to the 1920s novelty song "Yes we have no bananas."
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The third feature film directed by Woody Allen, and the first in which he had nearly full creative control.
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The movie's mock-TV ad for New Testament cigarettes earned the movie a "Condemned" rating by the Catholic Church.
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During the trial J. Edgar Hoover testifies, disguised as a black woman. While it was meant here as a joke, it would be revealed to the world after he died that Hoover liked to wear women's clothes, something that no one at the time of the movie would have ever believed.
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Working title: "El Weirdo".
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Woody Allen said he made a conscious decision not to show any blood to maintain the light, farcical tone of the film.
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During the training montage when Fielding is learning how to throw a hand grenade, the pin in his hand explodes after he throws the grenade. The reaction by Woody Allen is real as he was slightly singed by the incendiary device hidden in his hand, but Woody decided against doing the scene again and left it in the film as is.
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This was the third and final film that Mickey Rose co-wrote with Woody Allen. The first two films were What's Up, Tiger Lily? (1966) and Take the Money and Run (1969).
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Although they play love interests, the film was made after Woody Allen and Louise Lasser's divorce.
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Howard Cosell was allowed to improvise most of his part.
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The picture was originally conceived as a star vehicle for actor Robert Morse.
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The movie is ranked at the No. #69 spot on the American Film Institute's "100 Years...100 Laughs" Top 100 List.
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The film was partially inspired by Miguel de Cervantes y Saavedra's "Don Quixote". The film's original script title was "Don Quixote U.S.A.".
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Although she is billed fourth in the opening credits, Nati Abascal (Yolanda) does not have any dialogue.
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The very short song "Rebels Are We" that Esposito sings to his men is later sung by Diane Keaton when she becomes a rebel in Woody Allen' later film Sleeper (1973).
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In an interview with Robert B. Greenfield of Rolling Stone magazine in 1971, Woody Allen said: "They say it's a political film but I don't really believe much in politics. Groucho Marx has told me that The Marx Brothers' films were never consciously anti-establishment or political. It's always got to be a funny movie first".
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Conrad Bain, Charlotte Rae and Mary Jo Catlett all appear in small roles. All three performers would later appear on the TV sitcom Diff'rent Strokes (1978).
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While the rebels are watching Esposito make his first speech as the new Presidente, Fielding asks, "What's the Spanish word for straitjacket?" The answer is "camisa de fuerza" or literally, "force shirt" or "shirt of force".
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According to the Virgin Film Guide, "subsequent events in Central America have only enhanced the film's appeal".
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The baby carriage bouncing down the steps (about an hour into the film) is a homage to the Odessa Steps sequence in Battleship Potemkin (1925).
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In Denmark and Finland the film was released as 'Me And the Revolution', and Woody Allen would eventually put in a clause preventing foreign markets from renaming his films.
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Scenes cut from the film included government troops, disguised as a rumba band, cha-cha-cha through the jungle to take the rebels by surprise and a bogus Bob Hope acting as decoy so government planes could bomb the rebels.
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This was the first of a three-picture deal Woody Allen had with United Artists. Allen's affiliation with United Artists continued into the late 1980s.
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Included among the American Film Institute's 2000 list of the Top 100 Funniest American Movies.
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The wall calendar in Fielding's kitchen, around 0:13:34, shows "April 1970".
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This was Woody Allen's second and last co-writing collaboration with his old friend Mickey Rose. The two high school friends would go their separate ways professionally, with Rose moving to Los Angeles and writing for various television shows and the occasional film. The two remained friends - Allen was best man at Rose's wedding and the two talked regularly by phone until Rose's death in 2013.
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This was the second and last film that Marvin Hamlisch scored. As a change from Take the Money and Run (1969), Hamlisch had the freedom to compose standalone songs.
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In both the opening and closing credits, all letters are lowercase.
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Carlos Montalbán played another character named Vargas a year earlier in The Out of Towners (1970). The name Vargas was also used by Woody Allen in the short story Viva Vargas.
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Cameo 

Allen Garfield: As a man on a cross.
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Don Dunphy: As himself.
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Howard Cosell: As himself.
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Roger Grimsby: As himself.
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Spoilers 

The trivia item below may give away important plot points.

Woody Allen initially intended to end the movie with him emerging from a riot with his face darkened from soot; the black rioters would then mistakenly claim him as one of their own. As with Take the Money and Run (1969), Allen's editor, Ralph Rosenblum, convinced him to go with an ending more organic to the story that came before it.
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Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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