7.6/10
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66 user 62 critic

Lenny (1974)

The story of acerbic 1960s comic Lenny Bruce, whose groundbreaking, no-holds-barred style and social commentary was often deemed by the Establishment as too obscene for the public.

Director:

Bob Fosse

Writers:

Julian Barry (play), Julian Barry (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
591 ( 245)

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Nominated for 6 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dustin Hoffman ... Lenny Bruce
Valerie Perrine ... Honey Bruce
Jan Miner Jan Miner ... Sally Marr
Stanley Beck Stanley Beck ... Artie Silver
Frankie Man Frankie Man ... Baltimore Comic
Rashel Novikoff Rashel Novikoff ... Aunt Mema
Gary Morton Gary Morton ... Sherman Hart
Guy Rennie Guy Rennie ... Jack Goldstein
Michele Yonge Michele Yonge ... Nurse
Kathryn Witt Kathryn Witt ... Girl (as Kathie Witt)
Monroe Myers Monroe Myers ... Hawaiin Judge
John DiSanti ... John Santi
Mickey Gatlin Mickey Gatlin ... San Francisco Policeman
Martin Begley Martin Begley ... San Francisco Judge
Mark Harris Mark Harris ... Defense Attorney
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Storyline

Interview-style biography of controversial and pioneering stand-up comedian Lenny Bruce. The film traces Bruce from his beginnings as a Catskills comic to his later underground popularity based on his anti-establishment politics and his scatological humor. Written by Scott Renshaw <as.idc@forsythe.stanford.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Lenny Said It. "Hot Honey" Did It. Together They Shocked America. See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

December 1974 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Leni See more »

Filming Locations:

Miami Beach, Florida, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The Broadway production of "Lenny" by Julian Barry opened at the Brooks Atkinson Theater in New York City on May 26, 1971, and ran for four hundred fifty-three performances. See more »

Goofs

During the movie's opening monologue, Lenny says that it's 1964 and then references the MDA Telethon, which debuted in 1966. See more »

Quotes

Lenny Bruce: Deny it. Flat out - deny it! If you really love your wife, deny it. If they got pictures, deny it.
Honey Bruce: lt bugged me at first. You know, it, it hurt.
Lenny Bruce: If they walk in on you, deny it. Just say this strange chick came into the apartment shivering with a sign around her neck that said, ''l have malaria. Lie on top of me and keep me physically active or l'll die.''
Honey Bruce: Later, l found out a lot about why he did things like that.
Lenny Bruce: And chances are, man... they'll believe it. Do you know why?
The Interviewer: To prove himself.
Honey Bruce: ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Cutting Edge: The Magic of Movie Editing (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Tempus Fugit
Music by Bud Powell
Performed by Miles Davis
See more »

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User Reviews

Lenny's a movie star????
13 June 2001 | by hypnopaediaSee all my reviews

When I first put this movie in I thought I knew what to expect. I expected a good movie with a great actor in Dustin Hoffman. Well, as soon as it started and there is Hoffman's first dialogue through the credits, I was blown away. It was as if Lenny was starring in the film. I couldn't believe what I was seeing and hearing. Hoffman and Valerie Perrine gave excellent performances. It is almost inconceivable to imagine the preparation and training that Hoffman must have gone through to get Lenny down. I don't know who beat out Hoffman for the best actor award in 1974, but I can't imagine it being a more convincing performance than this.

And the use of black and white was great. The movie did give Lenny the appreciation that he deserved, mainly by showing his troubled personal life and his troubles with the law. The movie portrayed the trouble and basically harassment that Lenny went through when he voiced his observations of society, which were true, but weren't quite ready to be heard yet. The only fault (if at all) of the film is that it didn't quite show Lenny's genius in what he did. It definitely showed his potential but not quite his brilliance. But this might be because it was a biography of sorts of his life which included his personal and public life. I suppose if the movie just focused on his comedic talents; than his genius would have been obvious, but that wasn't the focus of the film. All in all this is an excellent movie in what it attempted to do. It accomplished what it set out to do and that's what counts.


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