6.3/10
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The Favour, the Watch and the Very Big Fish (1991)

R | | Comedy | 14 February 1992 (UK)
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2:07 | Trailer
A farce, Hoskins plays a photographer who specializes in religious pictures who searches for a model for Jesus. He does a favor for a friend and finds himself doing a voice track for a ... See full summary »

Director:

Ben Lewin

Writers:

Marcel Aymé (novel), Ben Lewin
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1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Bob Hoskins ... Louis Aubinard
Jeff Goldblum ... Pianist
Natasha Richardson ... Sybil
Michel Blanc ... Norbert
Jacques Villeret ... Lingerie Man
Angela Pleasence ... Louis' Sister
Jean-Pierre Cassel ... Zalman
Samuel Chaimovitch Samuel Chaimovitch ... Grandfather
Sacha Vikouloff Sacha Vikouloff ... The Violinist
Claudine Mavros Claudine Mavros ... Mother Superior
Carlos Kloster Carlos Kloster ... The Archbishop
Yvonne Constant Yvonne Constant ... Prostitute
Martine Ferrière ... Mother of Lingerie Man
Gerald Morales Gerald Morales ... Bishop's Driver
Yannick Evely Yannick Evely ... Mother Superior's Driver
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Storyline

A farce, Hoskins plays a photographer who specializes in religious pictures who searches for a model for Jesus. He does a favor for a friend and finds himself doing a voice track for a porno movie with Natasha Richardson. Hoskins finds his model for Jesus in Jeff Goldblum and a romantic triangle begins in which Goldblum finds adoring crowds believing him to be Jesus and then begins to believe it himself. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The catch of the day is fresh comedy.

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | France | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 February 1992 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

La montre, la croix et la manière See more »

Filming Locations:

Paris, France

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$164,767
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Louis Aubinard: I mean, I've got my doubts. I'm not totally convinced about God. If he's there, he's there. If he's not, he's not. In fact, if he is there at least I can say I've done more for him than he's done for me. He's performed no miracles for me, my friend. "Cast thy bread upon the waters and it shall be returned to you a thousand-fold." But what can you do with a thousand loaves of wet bread?"
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Connections

Referenced in Catwalk: The Gig, the Favor, and the Very Big Turkey (1992) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A very different brand of humour
19 March 1999 | by ScoopySee all my reviews

This is a new approach to comedy. It isn't funny.

The joke is that this, in and of itself, is supposed to be funny.

The story is based on a French short story, located in Paris, and the characters have French names. Louis Aubinard, for example ... played by ... Bob Hoskins? The movie also stars the equally French Jeff Goldblum and Natasha Richardson. The situations are similar to and the characters perform as if in those Carry-On movies from years back.

I believe these are also jokes - to cast these actors who make no attempt to act French in any way, to have them cavort in the manner of broad English dance hall comedy, and to leave the whole bloomin' mystery unexplained to the audience.

In the humour department, this is practically the Algonquin Round Table, isn't it?

The movie tries to be charming and quirky, and I guess these characteristics are sort of funny. Not as funny as Duck Soup or Love and Death, perhaps, but funnier than The Deer Hunter or The Battleship Potemkin.

It is an example of personal filmmaking. It makes no real effort to reach out and share with the audience, but stays true to its premise and its internal logic. Although all the situations are unbelievable, they are logical within the film's own bizarro world.

I generally like this kind of eccentric movie, but I found this one to be paced too slowly, to be dull-witted, tedious, and to provide too few pleasurable surprises or genuine wit. It just kind of meanders in predictable and sophomoric ways, and wastes some wonderful talents along the way. It has to be the low point in the career of each of the major stars, who are all otherwise distinguished players. I found it to be the biggest waste of talent since The Betsy, and I wish I had never seen Goldblum and Hoskins in this thing.

So, call it an interesting miss, and pass on it as a rental unless you really have a lot of time to kill.


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