Charles Sanford "Charlie" Babbit is a self-centered Los Angeles-based automobile dealer/hustler/bookie who is at war with his own life. Charlie, as a young teenager, used his father's 1949 Buick convertible without permission and as a result, he went to jail for two days on account that his father reported it stolen. It is then that Charlie learns that his estranged father died and left him from his last will and testament a huge bed of roses and the car while the remainder will of $3 Million goes into a trust fund to be distributed to someone. Charlie seemed pretty angry by this and decides to look into this matter. It seems as if that "someone" is Raymond, Charlie's unknown brother, an autistic savant who lives in a world of his own, resides at the Walbrook Institute. Charlie then kidnaps Raymond and decides to take him on a lust for life trip to the west coast as a threat to get the $3 Million inheritance. Raymond's acts and nagging, including repeated talks of "Abbott & Costello",...Written by
Christopher Howell (Ckhowell75360@aol.com)
Dustin Hoffman spent a year working with autistic men and their families to understand their complex relationships. Also, when he was a jobbing actor, he had worked in a psychiatric care home, and drew from his experiences then for the film. See more »
According to the EPA's 420 publication, Importing Vehicles and Engines into the United States, in 1998 the EPA allowed owners a one-time exemption for importing their foreign cars into the U.S. The EPA does not meet car buyers at the docks, and the idea that Charlie would have had to have the engine modifications right there is ridiculous. Charlie could have easily gotten his one-time EPA waiver for his four Lamborghini's; thus, his having to pay a $10,000 modification for each car before leaving the dock is completely without merit. In the worst case, at the time Charlie could have taken delivery of the vehicles and sold them to the prospective owners, the latter of which was THEIR responsibility to follow EPA guidelines, since Charlie was only a middleman, a broker, which could have also had any required modifications deferred to a later time. Consequently, Charlie's constant and frantic phone calls back to his home base about the cars "becoming legal" were totally unnecessary. See more »
Now it's five and a half weeks and I'm still sitting on four Lamborghinis that can't meet spot emissions standards. Now, how many times you wash out with EPA?
[on a separate line]
Uh, yes sir, they're finally, uh, clearing EPA; uh, just one or two more days.
Three times? You're really on a roll here, my friend; four cars, three times each - that's zip for twelve. What are you, a... mechanic, or a NASA engineer? Now listen, now, I told you I've never dealt with these ...
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Throughout the movie, Raymond is taking pictures. The pictures that he takes are shown as the background for the credits. See more »
Most airline versions of the film completely cut out the discussion of crash statistics. The reference to Qantas being the only international airline to have a perfect service record was deleted from the in-flight version of the movie by all international airlines except for Qantas. See more »
It is something of a great cinematic achievement that Rain Man became the great film it clearly is because the story surrounding it is interestingly Hollywood in itself.
Four directors, six screenwriters, two cinematographers, eight producers, writers strikes, crew change, and a studio fighting for its life.
All of the above are common knowledge but it doesn't hurt to remember these facts when viewing the award wining triumph of a movie that stands the test of time today. The film is so simple in structure it really needed something special to pull it out of the prospective banality of being "just another road movie about finding oneself", Rain Man achieves something special by tackling its subjects with very sensitive hands and splicing a believable human concept into the story via the incredible shows from its two leading men.
Dustin Hoffman gives a magical moving performance as the Autistic Savant Raymond, the ultimate complement I can pay the performance is that it really is believable, both moving and clever rolled into one artistic result. Tom Cruise is equally as great in a role that called for drastic layer changes, a role that demanded much conviction from the actor taking it on, and Cruise gives the role much depth as he goes from shallow bastard to a very emotive and feeling human being, it's a great show that stands up to reevaluation these days. A performance that seems to have sadly been forgotten in light of Hoffman's film stealing show. With a film such as this you pray that the ending can do it justice, and I'm glad to say that there is no pandering here, it's an ending that says so much because it doesn't cop out, I thank god for those rewrites because the endings to the original scripts would of had me booting the TV set out of the window.
Essential cinema. 10/10
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