4.2/10
9,295
134 user 44 critic

Ishtar (1987)

PG-13 | | Action, Adventure, Comedy | 15 May 1987 (USA)
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Two terrible lounge singers get booked to play a gig in a Moroccan hotel but somehow become pawns in an international power play between the CIA, the Emir of Ishtar, and the rebels trying to overthrow his regime.

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Writer:

1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Lyle Rogers
... Chuck Clarke
... Shirra Assel
... Jim Harrison
... Marty Freed
... Willa
... Carol
... Emir Yousef
Fijad Hageb ... Abdul (as Fuad Hageb)
... Mr. Clarke
Rose Arrick ... Mrs. Clarke
Julie Garfield ... Dorothy
... Siri Darma (as Christine Rose)
Robert V. Girolami ... Bartender (as Bob Girolami)
Abe Kroll ... Mr. Thomopoulos
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Storyline

Two terrible lounge singers get booked to play a gig in a Moroccan hotel but somehow become pawns in an international power play between the CIA, the Emir of Ishtar, and the rebels trying to overthrow his regime. Written by Stern

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

15 May 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Иштар  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$55,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,331,817, 17 May 1987, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$14,375,181
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Paul Sylbert scouted dunes in the United States and Morocco but none seemed to fit Elaine May's vision. After one unsuccessful search for dunes, Sylbert says, May suddenly announced she wanted a flat landscape instead. It took ten days to level an area of a square mile (2.6 km²). This decision cost $75,000. See more »

Goofs

AS the helicopter lowers to give the CIA agent a level shot at the duo, his wood stock, single shot, bolt action rifle turns into a black automatic weapon with a banana clip. See more »

Quotes

Chuck Clarke: You mean you bought a camel?
Lyle Rogers: No, I didn't really buy it. They SOLD it to me!
Lyle Rogers: Oh no. I think that something went wrong and now I own a blind camel. A blind camel!
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Connections

Featured in Siskel & Ebert: The Worst Films of 1987 (1988) See more »

Soundtracks

Tomorrow
Lyrics by Martin Charnin
Music by Charles Strouse
Performed by Warren Beatty and Dustin Hoffman
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User Reviews

The Truth About Ishtar!
8 January 1999 | by See all my reviews

This is actually a brilliant comedy that utilizes the subtle jab to the funny bone rather than the thundering blow. Unfortunately, this type of humor died out sometime in the middle of the television show NEWHART's run. Why? Read The Wasteland! I don't know! Ishtar works in the same vein as Billy Wilder and Preston Sturges. No, the jokes do not come out and slap you in the face... You have to look for them to find them. Needless to say, do not rent this if you want a cathartic, mindless jolt. However, do not slam this movie just because it isn't slaptick or screwball. (Which are the only kind of comedies made anymore!) Elaine May comes from the comedy team of Nichols and May (Yes, Mike Nichols! [In fact one could argue that the comedy in The Graduate is bad for the same reasons as the comedy in Ishtar is supposedly bad.]). This duo practically perfected the witty, acerbic brand of humor which is now completely missed and misunderstood but was used masterfully in this film. In the age of Saturday Night Live and Ace Ventura, a comedy of this sort most assuredly would bomb and continue bombing. Nevertheless, if you are sick and tired of being force-fed ridiculously bad, hackneyed comedy then I suggest renting Ishtar (then buying some Nichols and May albums and watching the Bob Newhart reruns on Nick at Nite). Oh... Carter was President when I was born by the way... This is not nostalgia!


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