6.8/10
9,146
36 user 27 critic

To Be or Not to Be (1983)

PG | | Comedy | 16 December 1983 (USA)
At the onset of WW2, a Polish actor's family and the Polish Resistance help the troupe of a theatre escape Poland and the invading Nazis.

Director:

Alan Johnson

Writers:

Thomas Meehan (screenplay), Ronny Graham (screenplay) | 2 more credits »

On Disc

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ronny Graham Ronny Graham ... Sondheim
Estelle Reiner ... Gruba
Zale Kessler Zale Kessler ... Bieler
Jack Riley ... Dobish
Lewis J. Stadlen Lewis J. Stadlen ... Lupinsky
George Gaynes ... Ravitch
George Wyner ... Ratkowski
James 'Gypsy' Haake James 'Gypsy' Haake ... Sasha (as James Haake)
Scamp Scamp ... Mutki
Christopher Lloyd ... Capt. Schultz
José Ferrer ... Prof. Siletski (as Jose Ferrer)
Charles Durning ... Col. Erhardt
Tim Matheson ... Lt. Andre Sobinski
Mel Brooks ... Dr. Frederick Bronski
Anne Bancroft ... Anna Bronski
Edit

Storyline

A bad Polish actor is just trying to make a living when what should intrude but World War II in the form of an invasion. His wife has the habit of entertaining young Polish officers while he's on stage which is also a source of depression to him. When one of her officers comes back on a Secret Mission, the actor takes charge and comes up with a plan for them to escape. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

That is the movie!

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Polish

Release Date:

16 December 1983 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Soy o no soy See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$9,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,020,958, 18 December 1983, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$13,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Mel Brooks has said this is his favorite of his Brooksfilms movies. See more »

Goofs

The Piccadilly Theatre is spelled "Picadilly". See more »

Quotes

Colonel Erhardt: [referring to Capt. Schultz] I've always suspected zumzing wrong vit a man who does not drink or shmoke...
Frederick Bronski: You mean like our FUHRER?
Colonel Erhardt: Yes... NO!
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the end of the movie, each cast member comes and takes a bow, as they would for a stage play, while their names are on the screen. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Producers (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Ladies
Music & Lyrics by Mel Brooks and Ronny Graham
Performed by Mel Brooks (uncredited)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
simply superb
1 September 2005 | by alexduncombeSee all my reviews

having not seen the Ernst Lubistch original, I came into this film with a blank mind not comparing it to its predecessor. This for me, was a huge plus and I walked away knowing that it was one of the finest comedies I have ever seen. It followed the most basic rule of comedy, in that the plot was simple, yet interesting - meaning that you didn't have to spend time going over the plot in your head (something that can kill a comedy), yet you still maintain interest. Mel Brooks is on stunning form, combining personal depth with superb comedy. Anne Bancroft is strong, yet unforced in a role that seemed almost written for her, and the comic strength of the supporting cast helps add to what is a movie that you can just sit back and enjoy.


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