With the help of a talking freeway billboard, a wacky weatherman tries to win the heart of an English newspaper reporter, who is struggling to make sense of the strange world of early 1990s Los Angeles.
Richard E. Grant
Navin is an idiot. He grew up in Mississippi as adopted son of a black family but on his 18th birthday he feels he wants to discover the rest of the world and sets out to St. Louis. There everyone exploits his naivety, but then a simple invention brings him a fortune.Written by
Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>
When Navin fills up the tank of the lowrider's car, he leaves the hose in the car and leaves. When he returns, the hose has been replaced back on the gas pump. See more »
Navin R. Johnson:
Huh? I am *not* a bum. I'm a jerk. I once had wealth, power, and the love of a beautiful woman. Now I only have two things: my friends, and... uh... my thermos. Huh? My story? Okay. It was never easy for me. I was born a poor black child. I remember the days, sittin' on the porch with my family, singin' and dancin' down in Mississippi...
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Pig Eye Jackson - Cat Juggler (Steve Martin) See more »
There are some differences in network airings when Navin is narrating the letters he writes back to his family. Original network airings replaced the theatrical line, "Is Grandma still farting?" with "Is Grandma still burping?" The later prints all say, "Is Grandma still farting?"
On edited versions of The Jerk when Grandma Johnson is reading Navin's letter they say that "My friend Patti promised me a job." This is in all network and standard cable prints. The theatrical release, premium cable channels, and DVD versions state the uncut sexual reference in the letter. A few commercial networks just edit out the line containing the sexual reference altogether. See more »
I'm glad that I didn't see this in the theatre, because when I watched it the first time on video, I needed to pause the movie several times just to catch my breath from laughing so hard! Wait a minute...was that the first time, or the tenth time? Playing Navin R. Johnson, the white son of a black family, Steve Martin leaves home to find "his special purpose." By the end of the movie, we all know what that was...to entertain his fans the way he has! As for Navin's special purpose, if you haven't already seen the movie, you aren't going to get any more information than what's here. It takes intelligence to play a complete idiot, and Steve Martin does the job extremely well. Also take note of Martin's costar Bernadette Peters, and the cameo appearances by Jackie Mason and Carl Reiner. Whoever wrote that people who watch "The Jerk" will be quoting its jokes for years after was absolutely right. This was the funniest of Steve Martin's movies!
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