6.1/10
19,782
75 user 26 critic

Harlem Nights (1989)

During the 1930s, a New York City illegal gambling house owner and his associates must deal with strong competition, gangsters, and corrupt cops in order to stay in business.

Director:

Eddie Murphy

Writer:

Eddie Murphy
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Popularity
4,154 ( 65)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Eddie Murphy ... Quick
Richard Pryor ... Sugar Ray
Redd Foxx ... Bennie Wilson
Danny Aiello ... Phil Cantone
Michael Lerner ... Bugsy Calhoune
Della Reese ... Vera
Berlinda Tolbert ... Annie
Stan Shaw ... Jack Jenkins
Jasmine Guy ... Dominique La Rue
Vic Polizos ... Richie Vento
Lela Rochon ... Sunshine
David Marciano ... Tony
Arsenio Hall ... Crying Man
Thomas Mikal Ford ... Tommy Smalls (as Tommy Ford)
Uncle Ray Murphy Uncle Ray Murphy ... Willie (as Uncle Ray)
Learn more

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Storyline

"Sugar" Ray is the owner of an illegal casino, who contends with the pressures of vicious gangsters and corrupt policemen who want to see him go out of business. In the world of organized crime and police corruption in the 1930s, any dastardly trick is fair.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

They're up to something big.

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In his autobiography, "Pryor Convictions and Other Life Sentences (1997)", Richard Pryor states that he "never connected with Eddie Murphy. People talked about how my work had influenced Eddie, and perhaps it did. But I always thought Eddie's comedy was mean. I used to say, "Eddie, be a little nice" and that would piss him off. I finished Harlem Nights thinking that Eddie didn't like me." See more »

Goofs

Quick jumps out of a moving car, rolls one way to avoid a car, then rolls the other way. The he runs and dives through a large glass window of a store. And his hat remains on his head. See more »

Quotes

Sugar Ray: Damn, I'm sure gonna miss that place. You know we can't ever go back there again.
Quick: Man, there's other cities. Find someplace else to start all over again.
Sugar Ray: But there's no place like Harlem.
Bennie Wilson: You ain't lying, Sugar. Let me look at it one last time.
See more »


Soundtracks

It Don't Mean A Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing)
Music by Duke Ellington
Lyrics by Irving Mills
See more »

User Reviews

 
Ignore the critics on this one.
21 November 2007 | by susan-745See all my reviews

This is one of Murphy's best works. Ignore what the critics say. They just didn't get it. I am a mid-aged white woman - and even I get it. It is a misogynistic as any stylized Western you may have seen. And the language is just what you would expect from Murphy and Pryor. This is stylized Harlem, guys.

I do not think Murphy set out to break ground plot-wise. Its meant to be a very traditional good vs. bad mobster movie. In this rare case we get to see the other side of tracks version. Why not??

This movie is a rare joining of a classic team of talents including Richard Pryor, Della Reese and Red Foxx. Della was my favorite and her rapport with Foxx is classic.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 November 1989 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Harlem Nights See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$16,096,808, 19 November 1989

Gross USA:

$60,864,870

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$60,864,870
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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