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Night Shift (1982)

R | | Comedy | 30 July 1982 (USA)
A morgue attendant is talked into running a brothel at his workplace after a deceased pimp is sent there. However, the pimp's killers don't look too kindly on this new 'business', nor does the morgue's owner.

Director:

Ron Howard
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Popularity
4,665 ( 68)

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Henry Winkler ... Chuck Lumley
Michael Keaton ... Bill Blazejowski
Shelley Long ... Belinda Keaton
Gina Hecht ... Charlotte Koogle
Pat Corley ... Edward Koogle
Bobby Di Cicco ... Leonard (as Bobby DiCicco)
Nita Talbot ... Vivian
Basil Hoffman ... Drollhauser
Tim Rossovich ... Luke
Clint Howard ... Jefferey
Joe Spinell ... Manetti
Cheryl Carter Cheryl Carter ... Tanya
Becky Gonzalez Becky Gonzalez ... Lupe
Corki Grazer Corki Grazer ... Sylvia (as Corki Corman)
Jaid Barrymore ... Joyce (as Ildiko Jaid)
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Storyline

A nebbish of a morgue attendant gets shunted back to the night shift where he is shackled with an obnoxious neophyte partner who dreams of the "one great idea" for success. His life takes a bizarre turn when a prostitute neighbour complains about the loss of her pimp. His partner, upon hearing the situation, suggests that they fill that opening themselves using the morgue at night as their brothel. Against his better judgement, he gets talked into the idea, only to find that it's more than his boss that has objections to this bit of entrepreneurship. Written by Kenneth Chisholm <kchishol@execulink.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It makes the day seem dead See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 July 1982 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Servicio de noche See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$23,600,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

In a 2019 interview with Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gifford, when queried about who his "most annoying co-star" was, Henry Winkler admitted that it was Shelley Long. See more »

Goofs

The big black dog that "terrorizes" Chuck as he enters his apartment, rounds the corner and slides twice. See more »

Quotes

Bill: You tellin' me to shut up?
Chuck: I'm telling you to shut up! I will tell your recorder so that you don't forget!
[Chuck picks up tape recorder and turns it on]
Chuck: Hello, this is Chuck to remind Bill to SHUT UP!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in ER: Night Shift (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Take It Off
Written by Jerry Riggs (uncredited)
Performed by Riggs
Courtesy of Warner Bros./Full Moon Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Working stiffs! (spoilers)
5 August 2004 | by vertigo_14See all my reviews

If you love Michael Keaton in early 80s comedy, then Night Shift is definitely recommended for you. He and Henry Winkler as a pair of mismatched oddballs make the perfect comic duo in this Ron Howard comedy.

Henry Winkler is the soft spoken, timid Chuck Lumley. He's a moper, and works at the city morgue, which is where he meets the wild Bill Blazejowski (Michael Keaton), an absolute fun-loving weirdo with a headful of crazy get-rich-quick ideas. Bill wants Chuck to be his partner for his next business venture: they're going to run a high class prostitution ring out of the city morgue.

The idea sounds stupid, but it is well-meaning in some regards, since these are career prostitutes who've gotten pushed around for too long. Bill and Chuck are going to be their friendly godpimps, and help them be successful, high class hookers. Their clientelle are kind, jolly fellows, and the pimps (Chuck and Bill) are always good to the girls. And they all make a sh*tload of cash. Unfortunately, in trying to create this romantic comedy aspect (Chuck falls in love with Belinda--Shelly Long--who is one of the hookers), it glamorizes prostitution, which is pretty sad and at the same time, pretty stupid.

Also, while Chuck and Bill are having their fun, a pimp and his goon (Richard Belzer and Badja Djola)want to know where all of their girls have gone and why, if someone else is running the business, they haven't been given a cut of the profits. They're a dangerous pair (although, they turn out to be pretty wimpy in the end).

The movie becomes a combination of the Odd Couple as Bill tries to invovle Chuck in all sorts of his crazy ideas once the prostitution gimmick picks up and becomes quite successful. Chuck, it being part of his nature to always do things safely and not too spontaneously, gradually becomes annoyed with Bill, especially when Bill's ideas start to get him in a whole lot of trouble. Though, in Bill's defense, he does try to help his friend out by trying to get him to stand up for himself and quit being afraid of everything. Henry Winkler and Michael Keaton are terrific here in all of their zany antics.

The other half of the movie is something like Irma La Douce in that Belinda is the lovely prostitute that Chuck has fallen for. And, once he does, he doesn't want her hooking anymore. Shelly Long was also quite good in this movie, and a natural, as always. What an underrated actress.

Night Shift is a pretty good comedy with a great cast that makes a somewhat stupid story work great. The dialogue is just absolutely silly (like when Bill and Chuck are fighting in the office and all Bill can say is as he's crashing through glass and junk is that Bill should be careful because Chuck's wearing white).


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