A former radio DJ, suicidally despondent because of a terrible mistake he made, finds redemption in helping a deranged homeless man who was an unwitting victim of that mistake.

Director:

Terry Gilliam
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3,674 ( 1,011)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 13 wins & 38 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jeff Bridges ... Jack
Adam Bryant Adam Bryant ... Radio Engineer
Paul Lombardi Paul Lombardi ... Radio Engineer
David Hyde Pierce ... Lou Rosen (as David Pierce)
Ted Ross ... Limo Bum
Lara Harris ... Sondra
Warren Olney Warren Olney ... TV Anchorman
Frazer Smith Frazer Smith ... News Reporter
Mercedes Ruehl ... Anne
Kathy Najimy ... Crazed Video Customer
Harry Shearer ... Sitcom Actor Ben Starr
Melinda Culea ... Sitcom Wife
James Remini James Remini ... Bum at Hotel
Mark Bowden Mark Bowden ... Doorman
John Ottavino John Ottavino ... Father at Hotel
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Storyline

Jack Lucas was once a famous, arrogant and egotistical New York City call-in radio talk show host. Largely self-inflicted due to remorse and grief, Jack goes on a quick downward spiral, both personally and professionally, after a glib comment he makes to one of his regular callers results in that caller going on a murder spree. Three years later, the only emotional and financial support a despondent Jack receives is from his current video store owning girlfriend, Anne. When Jack hits rock bottom, he meets a seemingly crazy and homeless man calling himself Parry. Parry does have mental health issues, namely hallucinations centered around the story of the Fisher King, which is why he has an obsession with obtaining the Holy Grail. When Jack learns of Parry's own background and the reason he got to where he is, Jack feels he needs to be part of Parry's salvation. He figures the way to do so is to connect Parry with Lydia Sinclair, a shy and uncoordinated woman who Parry loves from afar. ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A good, old-fashioned story of guilt, poverty, love, madness and free video club membership. (vv) See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Fantasy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Terry Gilliam had three rules in life when it came to filmmaking: 1) he'd never do anyone's script but his own, 2) he'd never work for a major studio, and 3) he'd never work in America. He violated all three of these rules to make The Fisher King. See more »

Goofs

Parry has a bruise on his forehead for most of the movie. When he is in the hospital, it and his other injuries are gone. In the last scene, in Central Park, the bruise is back. See more »

Quotes

Parry: Did you ever hear the story of the Fisher King?
Jack Lucas: No.
Parry: It begins with the King as a boy, having to spend the night alone in the forest to prove his courage so he can become King. Now while he's spending the night alone he's visited by a sacred vision. Out of the fire appears the Holy Grail, symbol of God's divine grace. And a voice said to the boy, "You shall be keeper of the Grail so that it may heal the hearts of men." But the boy was blinded by greater visions of a life filled with power and ...
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Connections

References Funny Lady (1975) See more »

Soundtracks

(You're) Having My Baby
Written by Paul Anka
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User Reviews

 
This movie should be on everyone's "must-see" list
23 July 2004 | by LJMTitleSee all my reviews

A touching yet humorous tale, THE FISHER KING brings together amongst the best performances given by Robin Williams and Jeff Bridges, as well as Terry Gilliam's finest directorial effort. Solid supporting performances by Amanda Plummer and Mercedes Ruehl round out a great film that ranks among my personal favorites.

Bridges portrays an arrogant radio shock-jock, who's big mouth and flippant comments send a disturbed listener on a murderous rampage, thus ending his career. Enter Ruehl as his new enabler girlfriend, waiting patiently for him to drag himself up from the dregs, hoping to catch a ride to the top. Just when Bridges seems to have hit rock bottom, he encounters Williams, a crazed vagrant who thinks he is a knight in shining armor.

What ensues is a tale of remorse, redemption and rebirth which is made all the more magical by Gilliam's magnificent vision. Most notable is a scene which takes place in Grand Central Station where the hustle and bustle of the busy commuters dissolves into a spectacular waltz as Williams follows Plummer, the woman of his dreams. Gilliam's style makes Williams delusions come alive as the character makes the slow journey from trauma-induced insanity to stark, yet hopeful, reality.

Every character in this film undergoes a metamorphosis, each learning from the others along the transformation. It is a beautiful film to watch, and an achievement to all involved that subject matter of such depth can come across with such humor and with such beauty.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 September 1991 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Fisher King See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$24,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$311,662, 22 September 1991

Gross USA:

$41,895,491

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$41,895,491
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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