7.7/10
7,465
80 user 38 critic

O Lucky Man! (1973)

Trailer
3:30 | Trailer
An apprentice coffee salesman has a series of improbable and ironic adventures that seem designed to challenge his naive idealism.

Director:

Lindsay Anderson

Writers:

David Sherwin (screenplay), Malcolm McDowell (based on an original idea by)
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Malcolm McDowell ... Mick Travis / Plantation Thief
Ralph Richardson ... Sir James Burgess / Monty
Rachel Roberts ... Gloria Rowe / Madame Paillard / Mrs. Richards
Arthur Lowe ... Mr. Duff / Charlie Johnson / Dr. Munda
Helen Mirren ... Patricia Burgess / Casting Assistant
Graham Crowden ... Stewart / Prof. Millar / Meths Drinker
Peter Jeffrey ... Factory Chairman / Prison Governor
Dandy Nichols ... Tea Lady / Neighbour
Mona Washbourne ... Neighbour / Usher / Sister Hallett
Philip Stone ... Jenkins / Interrogator / Salvation Army Major
Mary MacLeod ... Mary Ball / Salvationist / Vicar's Wife (as Mary Macleod)
Michael Bangerter Michael Bangerter ... William / Interrogator / Assistant / Released Prisoner
Wallas Eaton Wallas Eaton ... John Stone (Coffee Factory) / Col. Steiger / Prison Warder / Meths Drinker / Film Executive
Warren Clarke ... Master of Ceremonies (Nightspot) / Warner / Male Nurse
Bill Owen ... Supt. Barlow / Insp. Carding
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Storyline

Follows the literal and associated life journey of middle class Brit Mick Travis (Malcolm McDowell), representing the "everyman", as he tries to make his mark in his so far young life. He is able to make great strides in his traditional view of success by being what those in authority want him to be. As such, he achieves in a few weeks what it usually take years for others, namely having his own sales territory, the northeast and ultimately Scotland, for Imperial Coffee. He is also able to garner a plethora of fringe benefits from this job, including women throwing themselves at his feet. But he will ultimately face a struggle in class and authority warfare, which culminates with his encounter with the Burgess family, wealthy industrialist Sir James Burgess (Sir Ralph Richardson) and his daughter Patricia (Dame Helen Mirren), who Mick wants to marry, the former who is contemplating investing in the shady dealings in Zingara. Mick will also find that the class struggle not only applies... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Smile while you're makin' it. Laugh while you're takin' it. Even though you're fakin' it. Nobody's gonna know...

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Fantasy | Music

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Lindsay Anderson found working with Czech Cinematographer Miroslav Ondrícek much less rewarding than he had on If.... (1968). He also doubted his own skills as a director during the movie's making, and felt that the movie had insufficient preparation. See more »

Goofs

A sign says 200 miles to London where Travis is picked up. He has reached there by walking for a while from the military establishment where the explosion took place. The distance even from London to the border of Scotland is 398 Miles. See more »

Quotes

Monty: Try not to die like a dog.
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Alternate Versions

Premiered at the Cannes Film Festival with a running time of 192 mins. First released in the US at 166 minutes. See more »

Connections

Featured in TCM Guest Programmer: Edgar Wright (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Changes
Written by Alan Price
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User Reviews

Some films do not date
24 September 2001 | by max redmondSee all my reviews

I have seen both versions (there was an edited version in the late seventees that did not include the rescue scene) of "O Lucky Man" several times. I first saw it in London in the mid seventees as I was very impressed by Lindsay Andersons earlier "If", not to mention a fine performance by Malcolm McDowell. The surreal quality of of Andersons allegorical perspective of life in England at the time was reflected in one of the films great lines, "Try not to die like a dog?" Having seen the film several times since (and turned some friends onto Lindsey Anderson), I was truly surprised at how this film has, not only, not dated, but actually has more relevance now than it did some 27 years ago. England, was about to undergo radical changes in both government and economy. The naivety of the care free sixties was well behind us. Major strikes were frequent. Punk was about to explode onto an exhausted music scene. And, soon there would be a new regime of economic rationalists running the country. The mood and pace of "O Lucky Man" seemed to reflect a sense of innocence lost. Troubled times ahead. A sense of fear and mistrust of the prosperity that is so often associated with capitalism and free enterprise. There are even blatant stabs at genetic engineering. But most of all the sense that England was no longer in control of it's own destiny. Through out this vision of uncertainty are some of last centuries finest comic performances. Most notably Aurthur Lowes' 'Dr. Munda' was, and still is, brilliant. WARNING!!! Even though this film does not follow the normal codes and conventions of narrative structure, my next comment is about a scene towards the end of the film. So, if you have not seen "O Lucky Man", but would like to, stop reading now. The best line of all that sums up the mood of this film is delivered by Mick Travis during the audition scene. After being slapped in the face by Lindsay Anderson when he was told to 'smile', he looks straight at the camera, sneers, and says, "What's there to smile about?". All these years later, still brilliant.


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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 June 1973 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

O Lucky Man! See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Memorial Enterprises, Sam See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Black and White (opening sequence)| Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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