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Desperately Seeking Susan (1985)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama | 12 April 1985 (USA)
Trailer
2:00 | Trailer
A bored New Jersey suburban housewife's fascination with a kooky character she's read about in the personal columns leads to her being mistaken for the woman herself.

Director:

Susan Seidelman

Writer:

Leora Barish
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rosanna Arquette ... Roberta Glass
Madonna ... Susan
Aidan Quinn ... Dez
Mark Blum ... Gary Glass
Robert Joy ... Jim
Laurie Metcalf ... Leslie Glass
Anna Thomson ... Crystal (as Anna Levine)
Will Patton ... Wayne Nolan
Peter Maloney ... Ian
Steven Wright ... Larry Stillman D.D.S
John Turturro ... Ray
Anne Carlisle ... Victoria
José Angel Santana José Angel Santana ... Boutique Owner (as Jose Santana)
Giancarlo Esposito ... Street Vendor
Richard Hell Richard Hell ... Bruce Meeker
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Storyline

Bored Roberta spots a regular personal ad in the paper titled 'Desperately Seeking Susan'. She heads off to New York, following one of the ads, and finds Susan. When Susan sells her jacket, Roberta - trying to emulate her mystery ad writer - buys the jacket and wears it. Little does she know someone is looking for the jacket - and its owner... Written by Colin Tinto <cst@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It's a life so outrageous it takes two women to live it. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The magic-club scenes were filmed at the Audubon Ballroom in Harlem, which is best-known as the location of Malcolm X's 1965 assassination. Giancarlo Esposito, who plays a street vendor in this film, later played one of the assassins in Spike Lee's Malcolm X biopic, filmed at the same location. See more »

Goofs

When Susan sees the two criminals on TV, the blond guy is called Richard Nolan. In the closing credits, the character is named Wayne Nolan. See more »

Quotes

Susan: You know, I could get used to a place like this. Got any pot?
Gary: Pot? Um - Usually I keep some around; but, right now I'm out. You know how it is.
Susan: [pulls a joint out of her boot] How about a match?
See more »

Alternate Versions

The song heard in the beginning of the movie is "The Shoop Shoop song" in the US version whereas it is "One fine day" in the European one, possibly for copyright reasons. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Newhart: Desperately Desiring Susan: Part 2 (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

One Thing Leads to Another
Written by Cy Curnin (uncredited), Rupert Greenall (uncredited), Jamie West-Oram (uncredited),
Alfie Agius (uncredited) and Adam Woods (uncredited)
Performed by The Fixx
Courtesy of MCA Records Inc.
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User Reviews

Appealing and unconventional
11 March 2011 | by rick_7See all my reviews

Desperately Seeking Susan (Susan Seidelman, 1985) is an appealing, unconventional film about a shy, put-upon young married woman (Rosanna Arquette) who swaps places with a free-spirited man-eater (Madonna) after a bump on the head. A dated dramatic device, perhaps, but it's such a sweet, sassy and otherwise well-plotted affair we'll let it slide. The film inhabits a similar universe - and employs the same neon aesthetic - as Scorsese's ever-underrated comedy After Hours, but this is an altogether gentler affair. Sure it plunges its heroine into a seedy world dominated by shady, peroxide hit men and amorous conjurors, but it's in many ways preferable to the yuppie nightmare she's been living with all-time idiot-hole Mark Blum. At least here she's got love on her side, courtesy of kind-hearted Aidan Quinn (the psychotic drug-addled baddie in the Richard Dreyfuss-Emilio Estevez buddy movie Stakeout). Arquette, who played the lead in the classic John Sayles romcom Baby, It's You, is perfect as the doormat desperately seeking excitement, and while Madonna isn't a great actress, she's both hugely charismatic and ideally cast as the manipulative, posing, sex-obsessed Susan. Also look out for John Turturro in an early role as a nightclub compere. A little gem from out of left-field, this one, with an engaging storyline, memorable characters and a disarmingly peculiar sense of humour.

Trivia note: The new Madonna song on the soundtrack is Into the Groove. Not one of her best singles of the period, but still pretty damn decent.


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Details

Official Sites:

HBOMAX [United States]

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 April 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Desperately Seeking Susan See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,526,098, 31 March 1985

Gross USA:

$27,398,584

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$27,398,584
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Orion Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (original release)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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