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Barfly (1987)

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Based on the life of successful poet Charles Bukowski and his exploits in Hollywood during the 60s, 70s, and 80s.

Director:

Barbet Schroeder
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »

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The tempestuous love story between Fernando, an older man who has recently returned to his crime-ridden drug capitol hometown of Medellin, Colombia and the gun-happy 16-year-old assassin ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mickey Rourke ... Henry
Faye Dunaway ... Wanda Wilcox
Alice Krige ... Tully
Jack Nance ... Detective
J.C. Quinn ... Jim
Frank Stallone ... Eddie
Sandy Martin ... Janice
Roberta Bassin ... Lilly
Gloria LeRoy Gloria LeRoy ... Grandma Moses
Joe Unger ... Ben
Harry Cohn Harry Cohn ... Rick
Pruitt Taylor Vince ... Joe
Joe Rice Joe Rice ... Old Man in Bar
Julie 'Sunny' Pearson Julie 'Sunny' Pearson ... Hooker in Bar
Donald L. Norden Donald L. Norden ... Man in Alley
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Storyline

Henry Chinaski never cared for the American dream, the thought of needing to become 'something' and fit into the system disgusts him. He believes that life is free and yours to live like you see fit, and if that in some cases involves copious amounts of whiskey then so be it. Henry spends his days drinking and listening to the radio, and he spends his nights drinking and fighting against Eddy who he thinks personifies shallowness and shameless self promoting. Sometimes in the middle of this he finds the time to jot down a few lines of poetry or a short story. After fighting Eddy and winning for a change Henry is thrown out of his regular bar where Eddy is a bartender. This leads him to seek another watering hole where he happens to find Wanda who is a barfly, in her own words "if another man came along with a fifth of whiskey, I'd go with him". Henry is not fazed by this thou and moves in with her. Of course Wanda immediately goes off and sleeps with Eddy, but after some clothes ... Written by Erik Wallen <erik.wallen@bluetie.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Some people never go crazy. What truly horrible lives they must lead.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 October 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Szenen eines wüsten Lebens See more »

Filming Locations:

Culver City, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$45,900, 18 October 1987

Gross USA:

$3,221,568

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$3,221,568
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (TVC)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

While filming visitors to the set included film journalist Roger Ebert and the directors Errol Morris and Andrey Konchalovskiy. See more »

Goofs

Henry calls an ambulance and gives address of apartment building as 334, while in scene earlier that day building is clearly marked 360. See more »

Quotes

Henry: Nobody who ever wrote anything worth a damn could ever write in peace... Jesus.
See more »


Soundtracks

Theme for Ernie
By Fred Lacey
Published by Presitge Music (BMI)
Performed by John Coltrane
Courtesy of Fantasy, Inc.
See more »

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User Reviews

A magical movie!
18 May 2005 | by josh-hallSee all my reviews

Barfly I think is another great film that is not afraid to tell the truth! a film that does not hold back on things that need to be said in films. The film is based on a true story on an alcoholic and poet Henry Chinaski(Mickey Rourke in an unforgettable role) who does nothing all day and night except cruise bars, drink himself to death and purposely get in to fights with other barmen and customers.He soon meets another alcoholic Wanda Wilcox (Faye Dunaway at a should of been Oscar winning role)when they meet in a bar one night they soon realise how alike they are and how they are the people who the city they live in would rather forget and they soon form a special bond. The films story is totally compelling and unforgettable, the cinematography and realism and forgetting to mention Rourke and Dunaway acting their hearts out. This is a gem of a movie. 10/10.


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