7.2/10
47,046
126 user 59 critic

The Jerk (1979)

An idiotic man struggles to make it through life on his own in St. Louis.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
Reviews
Popularity
3,138 ( 392)

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ON DISC
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Navin / Cat Juggler (as Pig Eye Jackson also)
... Marie
... Patty Bernstein
... Mother
... Father
... Taj
... Stan Fox
... Madman
... Frosty
... Hobart
Helena Carroll ... Hester
... Elvira (as Ren Wood)
... Punk #1
Sonny Terry ... Blues Singer
Brownie McGhee ... Blues Singer (as Brownie McGee)
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Storyline

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>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He was a poor black sharecropper's son who never dreamed he was adopted. See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

14 December 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Easy Money  »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,935,025, 16 December 1979, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$73,691,419
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Super 8-version in 2 parts)

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

"Premiere" magazine readers voted Steve Martin's performance as Navin Johnson #99 for their "The 100 Greatest Performances of All Time" poll. See more »

Goofs

When the madman is shooting at Navin at the service station, when the cans are shot at, the holes are formed from inside the can not from the shots fired at the cans. You can clearly see the aluminum fold outward from the holes in the cans. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
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...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Pig Eye Jackson - Cat Juggler (Steve Martin) See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jeopardy!: Episode #33.10 (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

You Belong To Me
Sung by Bernadette Peters and Steve Martin
Music by Lee David
Lyric by Billy Rose
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Lord loves a workin' man; don't trust whitey; see a doctor and get rid of it.
10 June 2001 | by See all my reviews

Why is the rating for "The Jerk" so low? Every comment said that this movie was hilarious! Hey, anyone out there who gave "The Jerk" a low rating, come write a comment! I don't even know what's not to like about this movie. The script is extremely funny. The naive, ambitious Navin Johnson is the role that Steve Martin was born to play. This is one of the funniest movies ever (any fans of my comments know that I say that often, but I really mean it!).

P.S. If you're a worried parent wondering if this movie is okay for your child to see, let him / her see it. It's actually pretty tame. I couldn't tell what made it an R-rated movie.


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