6.7/10
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L.A. Story (1991)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama, Fantasy | 8 February 1991 (USA)
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With the help of a talking freeway billboard, a wacky weatherman tries to win the heart of an English newspaper reporter, who is struggling to make sense of the strange world of early 1990s Los Angeles.

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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Harris K. Telemacher
... Sara McDowel
... Roland Mackey
... Trudi
... SanDeE*
Susan Forristal ... Ariel
... Frank Swan
... Morris Frost
... Mr. Perdue, Maitre D' at L'Idiot
... Bob, News Anchor
Gail Grate ... Gail, News Anchor
Eddie De Harp ... Maitre D' at Brunch (as Eddie DeHarp)
M.C. Shan ... Rap Waiter at L'Idiot
... June
... Cynthia
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Storyline

Harris K Telemacher is a 'wacky weekend weatherman' for a local Los Angeles television station who is searching for meaning in his otherwise cliche ridden Los Angeles life. With the help of an insightful and talkative Freeway sign, Harris embarks on a journey through Los Angeles in pursuit of Sarah, an English reporter who has been sent to the City of Angels to research an article for the London Times. Written by TheMovieHippo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Something funny is happening in L.A.


Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 February 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Los Angeles Story  »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,616,915, 10 February 1991, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$28,862,081
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Scenes where Harris K. Telemacher (Steve Martin) is told that "skipping is the perfect compromise", and where Harris skips across the street were shown in trailers, but not in the movie. See more »

Goofs

In the credits Sarah Jessica Parker's character is listed as "Sandy" and not "SanDeE". See more »

Quotes

Tom: I'll have a decaf coffee.
Trudi: I'll have a decaf espresso.
Morris Frost: I'll have a double decaf cappuccino.
Ted: Give me decaffeinated coffee ice cream.
Harris: I'll have a half double decaffeinated half-caf, with a twist of lemon.
Trudi: I'll have a twist of lemon.
Tom: I'll have a twist of lemon.
Morris Frost: I'll have a twist of lemon.
Cynthia: I'll have a twist of lemon.
See more »

Crazy Credits

SanDeE* (Sarah Jessica Parker) is very peculiar about how her name is spelled. Still, the character is listed as "Sandy" in the credits. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jeopardy!: Episode #22.9 (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

On Your Shore
Written by Enya, Roma Ryan and Nicky Ryan
Performed by Enya
Courtesy of WEA Records Limited / Geffen Records
By Arrangement with Warner Special Products
See more »

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User Reviews

Martin at His Best
9 March 2003 | by See all my reviews

When Steve Martin is hot, he's really hot. L.A. Story, written by Steve Martin, is hot. The entire film keeps you in a state of constant chuckling. And, the movie has more than a few moments of comedic genius. It's the cumulative effect of little jokes littered throughout the film, both verbal and visual, that keeps you in stitches. On top of that, it piques your interest.

Here's what I mean: while Martin mercilessly it pokes fun of L.A. for it's flakiness, it's love and tolerance of idiosyncrasies, it's constant preoccupation with image, it's narcissism, the humor is never vulgar, crass, or shallow. For example, one scene takes place in the municipal art museum. We see Harry Telemacher (Steve Martin), with his friends, rapt in admiration for a painting. The camera angle comes from the canvas itself, where we watch Harry, deep in thought, dissertate on the subjects in the portrait, their motives, actions, and hidden agendas. He moves forward, backward, forward again, as if in active dialogue with the lacquer. At last, moving backward, he concludes his remarks by wrinkling his nose in disgust and saying `Look at the way he's holding her: it's almost filthy!' And then the camera moves around to Telemacher's perspective. The painting's a total abstraction. There isn't a distinct line in the entire rectangular frame. In the argot of Postmodernism, one might call it a `readerly' work of art.

It's the perfect metaphor for L.A., where you may interpret anything, any way you like. There's no standard, except one's own `personal reality.' No one can use social norms as a personal club to tell someone else, `You're wrong,' because there is none. It's all `what-E-verrrr.'

Best of all, L.A. Story is a love story, the kind of love that adores someone as much for their faults as for their virtues. Martin's satire is so effective because he loves the city so much.


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