7.4/10
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75 user 43 critic

Bagdad Cafe (1987)

Out of Rosenheim (original title)
PG | | Comedy, Drama | 22 April 1988 (USA)
A lonely German woman ends up in the most desolate motel on Earth and decides to make it brighter.

Director:

Percy Adlon

Writers:

Eleonore Adlon (screenplay), Percy Adlon (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 14 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Marianne Sägebrecht ... Jasmin Münchgstettner
CCH Pounder ... Brenda
Jack Palance ... Rudi Cox
Christine Kaufmann ... Debby
Monica Calhoun ... Phyllis
Darron Flagg Darron Flagg ... Salomo
George Aguilar ... Cahuenga
G. Smokey Campbell ... Sal
Hans Stadlbauer Hans Stadlbauer ... Münchgstettner
Alan S. Craig Alan S. Craig ... Eric
Apesanahkwat ... Sheriff Arnie
Ronald Lee Jarvis Ronald Lee Jarvis ... Trucker Ron
Mark Daneri ... Trucker Mark
Ray Young ... Trucker Ray
Gary Lee Davis Gary Lee Davis ... Trucker Gary
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Storyline

Out of Rosenheim (Bagdad Café) is a look into the lives (and minds) of some people we all have encountered, but few of us ever get to know. This film (a 'fish out odd water'-type tale) shows how one person can affect a disparate community. The Adlons express the view that change and "magic" comes from hard work and mutual understanding/acceptance. A well-crafted view of the lives of people everywhere and the difficulties we all can face. A whimsical story, lovingly shot by people who - unfamiliar with what others too often ignore give this arid area - the bleak, and arrid South West, an almost fairytale-like beauty. Written by The Kid in Bellevue

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Off Route 66 between Vegas and nowhere a little magic's going on... See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Whoopi Goldberg turned down the part of Brenda. She later played the part in the TV version Bagdad Cafe (1990). See more »

Goofs

Christine Kaufmann's character's, the tattoo artist, name is spelled Debby in the film credits but the sign outside her shop spells her name Debbie. See more »

Quotes

Brenda: Jesus, I hate things that don't make sense.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Original German version runs 20 minutes longer than the US release. See more »

Connections

Featured in Pisces (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Brenda Brenda
Written by Bob Telson, Lee Breuer, Percy Adlon
Performed by Jearlyn Steele (as Jearlyn Steele-Battle), Marianne Sägebrecht and Tommy Joe White
See more »

User Reviews

 
A movie that works without being able to explain why
27 May 2004 | by gusdawg78-1See all my reviews

Years ago while living in another state, I was bored and went to the local "mom and pop" video store to find something to pass the time. The proprietor asked me what type of movie I preferred. I responded that I like movies that are good stories about people, relationships, friendships, etc.

He recommended "Bagdad Cafe".

A few years later, the video store was driven out of business by the larger chains. It is too bad really, because I doubt that I would ever have stumbled upon this little gem of a movie at one of the huge mega video marts that are popping up all over the planet like unwanted zits, but I digress.

I owe that person a huge "Thank you!" for introducing me to what has become one of my all time favorite movies.

I was strangely pulled into the movie right from the beginning. For me, it was like a great book that you just can't put down, and that you want to read over, and over again to see if you missed anything, or merely to recapture the warm feeling you got the first time through.

What is also unusual is that after more than 10 years have passed, I recently was able to talk my 25-year-old son into watching it with me. His comment about midway through was, "I am strangely drawn to this movie." At the end, he said it was "Great!" and asked me if it had won any awards. I found this perspective amazing coming from someone who regularly feeds on a diet of movies such as "Lord of the Rings", "Matrix", and "Kill Bill." Go figure.

From my limited observation of those who appreciate this movie (like me), I have come to the conclusion that this is a movie that works without being able to explain why. When asked to describe in one word what this movie is about, the best response I can come up with is "friendship." However, that is such a lame description, because there is so much more to the movie than just that.

Yet, on the surface, one could get the mistaken impression that there is not really much going on "Bagdad Cafe". There are no car chases, love scenes, murders, suicides, explosions, deaths, births, weddings, or funerals. The movie just, "is."

It is a slice of mid-life for two women, Jasmine & Brenda, when their paths cross. These two are women who are trying to cope with their respective lots in life, which from external appearances seem to be quite diverse. However, at the heart they are really the same. Both are in ruts, looking for change, for something better in the middle of nowhere, when they find each other. Once the rock-hard exterior melts away and they reach a common ground, their blossoming friendship transforms both.

The character of Jasmine is the glue that brings the story together. In "Bagdad Cafe", she gives new meaning to the old saying, "making lemonade out of lemons" and in the process, she also brings magic and new energy into the life of Brenda and her family. The subtlety of the revelation of Jasmine's real character is one of the best examples of a human metamorphosis ever captured on the screen.

If you are looking for a movie with special effects of epic proportions, or new adventures in creative violence, this movie might not be for you. However, if you are looking for a story about humanity, love and friendship done with a "light" touch, then pop the popcorn and put on "Bagdad Cafe" and enjoy.

Oh, and to the owner of the little video store who recommended this movie to me, where ever you are, thank you for bringing the magic of "Bagdad Cafe" into my life.


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Details

Official Sites:

Imagica TV [Japan]

Country:

West Germany

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

22 April 1988 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Bagdad Cafe See more »

Filming Locations:

Bagdad, Arizona, USA See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$3,587,303

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$3,696,134
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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