6.6/10
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Tommy (1975)

PG | | Drama, Musical | 26 March 1975 (UK)
A psychosomatically deaf, dumb and blind boy becomes a master pinball player and, subsequently, the object of a religious cult.

Director:

Ken Russell

Writers:

The Who (by) (as 'The Who'), Ken Russell (screenplay) | 3 more credits »

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Oliver Reed ... Frank
Ann-Margret ... Nora
Roger Daltrey ... Tommy
Elton John ... The Pinball Wizard
Eric Clapton ... The Preacher
John Entwistle ... Himself
Keith Moon ... Uncle Ernie
Paul Nicholas ... Cousin Kevin
Jack Nicholson ... The Specialist
Robert Powell ... Captain Walker
Pete Townshend ... Himself
Tina Turner ... The Acid Queen
Arthur Brown Arthur Brown ... The Priest
Victoria Russell Victoria Russell ... Sally Simpson
Ben Aris Ben Aris ... Reverend Simpson
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Storyline

Nora Walker is told that her British fighter pilot husband is missing in action and presumed killed in World War II. On V.E. Day, Nora gives birth to their son, who she names Tommy. While Tommy is an adolescent, Nora marries Frank, a shifty camp counselor. Shortly thereafter, Tommy suffers an emotionally traumatic experience associated with his father and step-father, which, based on things told to him at that time, results in him becoming deaf, dumb and blind, a situation which several people exploit for their own pleasure. As Nora tries several things to bring Tommy out of his psychosomatic disabilities, Tommy, now a young man, happens upon pinball as a stimulus. Playing by intuition, Tommy becomes a pinball master, which in turn makes him, and by association Nora and Frank, rich and famous. Nora literally shatters Tommy to his awakening, which ultimately leads to both the family's rise and downfall as people initially try to emulate Tommy's path then rebel against it. Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Your senses will never be the same

Genres:

Drama | Musical

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 March 1975 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Tommy by 'The Who' See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$5,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$34,251,525
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Quintaphonic (5 channel Stereo) (as Quintophonic Sound®)| Dolby (as Dolby System Noise Reduction - High Fidelity Optical Sound Track)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Ken Russell originally wanted Sir Christopher Lee to play the Doctor. But he was in Bangkok, Thailand, filming The Man with the Golden Gun (1974). Luckily, Jack Nicholson was in London at the time, and he was brought in as a last-minute replacement for Lee. His singing and his film part were filmed and recorded in eighteen hours. See more »

Goofs

The camera and camera operator are reflected in Tommy's pinball cane when Tommy and Nora are driving in the car. See more »

Quotes

Tommy: I'm free - I'm free, And freedom tastes of reality! I'm free - I'm free, And I'm waiting for you to follow me.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Brothers of the Head (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Amazing Journey
(uncredited)
Written by Pete Townshend
Performed by Tony Newman, Nicky Hopkins, Alan Ross, Phil Chen,
Pete Townshend
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Weird World of Ken Russell: Tommy
30 July 2005 | by Joseph P. UlibasSee all my reviews

Tommy (1975) was the film adaptation of the Who's classic concept album Tommy. The film and the album are slightly different (the re-recorded songs pale to the real deal). But it was interesting to see avant-garde film maker Ken Russell re-imagine Tommy for the big screen. The movie has an all-star cast of eccentric and top stars (Oliver Reed, Ann-Margaret, Jack Nicholson) and pop stars (Tina Turner, Roger Daltry, Keith Moon, Eric Clapton, Elton John and The Who themselves, as a group on stage).

The music was changed and performed for the movie. Most of the dialog was sung (by all of the actors) and Ken Russell changed some of the story to fit the movie. If you're a fan of the album you might be disappointed by the movie. But it's worth a watch just to see Oliver Reed, Ann-Margaret (in total HOT mode) and the others as they make cameo appearances and guest spots. I was slight disappointed but I was pleased with the results. I just wished they used the original music whenever they could.

Recommended for Who and Ken Russell fans.


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