5.9/10
8,781
50 user 14 critic

The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas (1982)

A town's Sheriff and regular patron of a historical whorehouse fights to keep it running when a television reporter targets it as the Devil's playhouse.

Director:

Colin Higgins

Writers:

Larry L. King (play), Peter Masterson (play) | 3 more credits »

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Stroker Ace (1983)
Action | Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

The title character, a popular NASCAR driver, clashes with the fried-chicken mogul that sponsors his racing team.

Director: Hal Needham
Stars: Burt Reynolds, Ned Beatty, Jim Nabors
Action | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

The Bandit goes on another cross-country run, transporting an elephant from Florida to Texas. And, once again, Sheriff Buford T. Justice is on his tail.

Director: Hal Needham
Stars: Burt Reynolds, Jackie Gleason, Jerry Reed
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Tom Sharky is demoted to vice after a bust goes terribly wrong. He and his team stumble across a mob murder tied to prostitution and government.

Director: Burt Reynolds
Stars: Burt Reynolds, Rachel Ward, Vittorio Gassman
Hooper (1978)
Action | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Hollywood aging stuntman Sonny Hooper wants to prove that he's still got what it takes to be a great professional in this risky and under-recognized line of work.

Director: Hal Needham
Stars: Burt Reynolds, Jan-Michael Vincent, Sally Field
Action | Comedy | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A wide variety of eccentric competitors participate in a wild and illegal cross-country road race. However, the eccentric entrants will do anything to win the road race, including low-down, dirty tricks.

Director: Hal Needham
Stars: Burt Reynolds, Roger Moore, Farrah Fawcett
Action | Drama | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

An ex con teams up with federal agents to help them with breaking up a moonshine ring.

Director: Joseph Sargent
Stars: Burt Reynolds, Jennifer Billingsley, Ned Beatty
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A sadistic warden asks a former pro quarterback, now serving time in his prison, to put together a team of inmates to take on (and get pummeled by) the guards.

Director: Robert Aldrich
Stars: Burt Reynolds, Eddie Albert, Ed Lauter
Gator (1976)
Action | Drama | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Agents force a former con man to help them nab a corrupt politician.

Director: Burt Reynolds
Stars: Burt Reynolds, Jack Weston, Lauren Hutton
The End I (1978)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Slapstick black comedy about a man (Reynolds) who finds that he hasn't much longer to live and has bungled his attempts at suicide.

Director: Burt Reynolds
Stars: Burt Reynolds, Sally Field, Dom DeLuise
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.4/10 X  

Big and Little Enos are opening a sea food restaurant. They bet Sheriff Buford T. Justice that he cannot drive from Miami to the Enos ranch in Texas in a given amount of time. If Buford loses he has to give up his badge.

Director: Dick Lowry
Stars: Jackie Gleason, Jerry Reed, Paul Williams
Six Pack (1982)
Comedy | Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Stopping briefly in a small Texas town, an itinerant race car driver finds that his stock car, on a trailer behind his motor home, has just been quickly and expertly stripped. He chases ... See full summary »

Director: Daniel Petrie
Stars: Kenny Rogers, Diane Lane, Erin Gray
Starting Over (1979)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A divorced man falls in love, but somehow he can't get over his ex-wife. This affects his love life in comic ways. Based on Dan Wakefield's novel.

Director: Alan J. Pakula
Stars: Burt Reynolds, Jill Clayburgh, Candice Bergen
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Burt Reynolds ... Sheriff Ed Earl Dodd
Dolly Parton ... Mona Stangley
Dom DeLuise ... Melvin
Charles Durning ... Governor
Jim Nabors ... Deputy Fred
Robert Mandan ... Senator Wingwood
Lois Nettleton ... Dulcie Mae
Theresa Merritt ... Jewel
Noah Beery Jr. ... Edsel (as Noah Beery)
Raleigh Bond Raleigh Bond ... Mayor
Barry Corbin ... C.J.
Ken Magee Ken Magee ... Mansel
Mary Jo Catlett ... Rita
Mary Louise Wilson ... Modene
Howard K. Smith ... Howard K. Smith
Edit

Storyline

Founded in 1910 just outside of the city limits of Gilbert located in Lanville County, Texas, the Chicken Ranch has for generations been known as the best little whorehouse in Texas for its wholesome fun, strict moral code, and cleanliness, all perpetuated by its original owner, Miss Wulla Jean. Seven years ago, Miss Wulla Jean died, leaving the Chicken Ranch to her favorite working girl, Miss Mona Stangley, who wants to keep the same traditions of Miss Wulla Jean. The Chicken Ranch has always had the unofficial blessing of the local authorities, who see the ranch providing an important community service, one which most in local authority have used at one time or another in their lives. In fact, Miss Mona and Lanville County Sheriff Ed Earl Dodd have been in a relationship for years, Ed Earl, who is Miss Mona's protector, albeit one with a hot temper and good ol' boy attitude that doesn't exactly match the needs of his law upholding position. That blessing may change when television ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

With Burt and Dolly this much fun just couldn't be legal!

Genres:

Comedy | Musical

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

23 July 1982 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La mejor casita de placer See more »

Filming Locations:

Austin, Texas, USA See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$35,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$11,874,268, 25 July 1982, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$69,701,637
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Because of the film's provocative title, the movie was briefly seized by Slough Police in the UK during the 1980s UK video nasty craze, after they believed it to be a sex film. See more »

Goofs

When dancing to "Sneaking around with you" Ed Earl has a blanket wrapped around him. It changes length and the way it's tied several times. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Deputy Fred: It was the nicest little whorehouse you ever saw!
See more »

Alternate Versions

The use of the word "Whorehouse" in the title caused controversy. In Canada, TV ads for the film bleeped the word, and in some locales the name of the film was changed to Best Little Cathouse in Texas. Network and non-cable TV versions use a differently edited opening credits sequence to remove nudity and sex. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982) See more »

Soundtracks

Hard Candy Christmas
Written by Carol Hall
Performed by Dolly Parton
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Hello, Dolly!!!
14 December 2011 | by dimpletSee all my reviews

5.3?

The problem, I suspect, with this movie is that the wrong people are watching it, and the right aren't.

Let's see, who does this movie offend? Christian fundamentalists, politicians and Texans. I don't know how many of the former are watching it and then rating it (perhaps they just rate first, watch later), but it looks like some Texans don't have a sense of humor.

And then there are Burt Reynolds fans who might be shocked to find this is not a typical Burt Reynolds movie, and hate it. But folks who aren't Burt Reynolds fans will probably enjoy it. Reynolds' excellent acting is natural, understated, and properly nuanced to the scenes. I think Reynolds and Parton are very well cast together and have real chemistry.

As to Dolly Parton, who knows? All I know is you don't have to be a Dolly Parton country music fan to love this movie. My estimation of Ms. Parton went up enormously after first seeing this movie. She is one smart lady and a fine actress.

So, to add it up, if you are not from Texas, not a Bible-thumper, not a politician, not a Burt Reynolds fan and not a Dolly Parton fan, you should definitely watch The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas.

Oh, and folks expecting porn are going to be disappointed, though there is the briefest of cameos by none other than Kay Parker, dressed. Don't blink. Too bad she didn't get a speaking part. This lady can actually act! I saw her reciting Shakespeare, for some reason I can't recall, in one of her movies, and she was real good.

Watch this movie because it is laugh out loud funny. You need to watch closely at the details because the scenes are beautifully crafted. Watch the one of Dom DeLuise getting dressed in front of Reynolds before going on air. It is hilarious, especially the sock. But the most memorable scene is of "Governor" Charles Durning doing his "Sidestep" number. It is a masterpiece.

It is easy to forget this is a musical, perhaps because the storyline is so strong it could survive as a movie without music. But a musical it is, in the tradition of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers and Oklahoma! with its masculine cowboy acrobatics dancing, though with an 80s twist, given the locker room dance number.

Thats what makes this movie great: It takes the concept of the musical comedy and brings it out of the Fifties and into the Eighties in a way that is still relevant and pretty outrageous today because of its swipe at hypocrisy. Did I say swipe? Perhaps dagger thrust or kick in the face to hypocrisy would be more accurate. In this regard, The Best Little Whorehouse is hardly subtle.

So perhaps I should add to the list of people who will not like this movie, hypocrites. For them, there is "Hello, Dolly!"


11 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 50 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed