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This one is worth it
tim816015 April 2001
It's funny. It's not Arthur Miller or T.S. Elliot, but man this is funny. Kline and Fields are great. (Her toss-off line "God, you are so disGUSting" as she climbs in his window - great! Kline's running into the door after scoping out Teri Hatcher - great too!) Robert Downey Jr. and Kathy Moriarty work together flawlessly - until he finds out who she really is... a soap opera turn if there every was one!

The scene near the end in the chinese dining area had my kids and I rolling on the floor - that scene alone is worth the rental price.

Doesn't solve any world problems or show the seemy underbelly of daytime T.V. (I hope). Just a lot of fun.
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Best of the Best
FreyDogg25 October 1998
It really is a shame that films like this never snag Best Picture nominations, because this one is simply a winner. This is by far the most consistently hilarious comedy I have ever seen. Its screenplay and design are impeccable, not to mention the incredible cast. I can quote this movie for hours on end. Watch it.
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A Forgotten Comedy Classic
Translucid2k42 August 2007
'Soapdish' is one of the best, yet least well remembered comedies of the 1990's. The film revolves around the various off-camera drama's that occur behind the scenes of a cheaply produced Daytime Soap Opera. The first of the film's various impressive strengths is it's fantastic A-List cast. 'Soapdish' features some of the greatest actors and actresses of it's era.

The film is superbly led by Sally Field, as the neurotic ageing actress Celeste Talbert (She famously throws a tantrum when put in a costume that makes her look like "Gloria F*CKING Swanson!"). Her supporting cast reads like a who's-who of 90's Movie Greats! Whoopi Goldberg, Robert Downey Jr, Teri Hatcher, Kevin Kline and Kathy Najimy all elevate the film greatly. Goldberg is predictably excellent, whilst Downey Jr.'s and Hatcher's performances hint at the comedic excellence they would later achieve.

In terms of writing, the film is outstanding. There is a really modern edge to the script, which strays into the wonderfully bizarre on several occasions. There also several visual gags that are quite ahead of their time. In some ways, the film is reminiscent of Mel Brooks at his best and frequently reminded this reviewer of 'High Anxiety' (1977). Much of the film's humour hinges on it's often scathing, but pretty accurate, representations of daytime television and of neurotic and pretentious actors. For example, The extras casting session featuring the exploitative executive played by Carrie Fisher, is both hilarious and honest.

'Soapdish' is, for my money, one of the very best comedies Hollywood produced during the 1990's. It's excellent script and A-Class cast make it a must-see. It's hard not to love this film after it's kept you laughing for 90 minutes.
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Such an enjoyable film
WinnieRouge17 March 2004
Years ago I did follow a soap on TV. So I was curious about this movie, and I was so rewarded for finding it. It's a marvelous spoof of soaps, with jealousies, the usual actors' insecurities, and all sorts of lovely excesses. But more than anything - an amazing cast and an incredible script. How did someone get all those top-notch actors to play in such a silly sort of movie? And how did this little movie get writers to write the perfect lines? I never hear anyone talk about this movie or even admit hearing of it, but it's marvelous and I highly recommend seeing it. Sometimes I'll throw it on while doing housecleaning, and end up sitting on the couch, watching, laughing and thoroughly enjoying the whole wonderful thing. Many congrats to all who made it.
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Genuinely funny movie
vulture18 May 2000
Soapdish may go down as one of the single most under-rated movies ever made.

A stellar, unselfish cast who understood exactly where the movie was going and the roles they played in it. While everyone hammed it up, there was no one-upmanship. Kline showed wit and great physical comedy, Goldberg and Downey knew how to carry on a funny conversation while someone else was talking, I could just go on.

Do not pass this movie by!
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Red7Eric17 September 1998
I think that this is possibly the funniest movie I have ever seen. Robert Harling's script is near perfect, just check out the "quotes" section; on second thought, just rent the DVD, since it's the delivery that really makes the lines sing.

Sally Field gives a comic, over-the-top performance like you've never seen from her anywhere else, and Kevin Kline is effortlessly hilarious. Robert Downey, Jr. is typically brilliant, and in a very small role, Kathy Najimy is a riot as the beleaguered costumer. I was never much of a fan of Elisabeth Shue, but she's great here as the one *real* person surrounded by a bevy of cartoon characters on the set of "The Sun Also Sets" -- that rumbling you feel beneath you is Hemingway rolling over in his grave. Either that, or he's laughing really hard.

Five stars. Funny, funny, funny.
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Brilliant !
french toast19 February 2003
This is one of the best comedy ever ! The writing of this parody of soap is brilliant and the cast, well just look at the names of the cast and you'll understand why it is so great. If you're a Kevin Kline fan, he does (as always) an fantastic performance, and Robert Downey Jr is perfect. If you don't laugh while seen this movie, you don't have any sense of humor.
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I loved this movie!!!!
guil1228 September 2002
From the opening credits to and through the final credits ballroom cast celebration, this movie had me laughing and applauding the nonsense and hysterical plot. What a cast of stellar performers in certainly an ensemble approach to this flick. For they all seemed to have fun along the way and shared in the carrying out of a deliciously funny film. With Sally Field [who can do no wrong] Kevin Kline [a master of a line and expression] Robert Downey Jr. [brilliant and who can forget the other side of the coin and his performance as Charlie Chaplin] and Whoopi Goldberg [her one liners are a treasure "I'll say amen"] But let us not forget the supporting cast who stand out on their own, not to be overshadowed by the stars. Cathy Moriarty [very imposing and having a surprise for us all later in the plot working flawlessly along side of Downey] Elisabeth Shue [who can bring honesty along with humor in her performance] Paul Johansson [gorgeous hunk playing the soap hero bringing some very funny moments on his own] the delightful Kathy Najimy [who steals every scene she's in as the costumer who keeps dragging smokes throughout the film] Carrie Fisher [small role of casting agent on the lust for Rob Camilletti, an actor auditioning for a one liner as waiter] and the delectable Terri Hatcher as one of the stars of the soap who spends most of her time pushing up her breasts for the camera and for off camera. Put all of these terrific performers in one film and you have terrific comedy and a fast paced film. Hats off to you all. I have the VHS and never tire from watching this little treasure.
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A crackling sendup of the daytime TV world.
Bellarmine19 October 2003
The scene where Sally Field and Whoopi Goldberg go to the mall to revive Sally's flagging spirits is enough reason alone to enjoy this movie, but wait! There's more! This is a crackling good sendup of daytime TV, movie stars on the way down, (and up) and the horrors of love. Robert Downey Jr shows the lighter side of his genius, and Cathy Moriarty is splendid. The dialogue is witty, and the physical humor done with consummate skill. This is a movie that will appeal to those who really enjoy the arts of acting, directing, and writing.
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Sorry, no clever puns here - just a glowing review
brendanchenowith6 April 2006
Warning: Spoilers
This has to be, hands down, hats off, one of the most uproarious comedies ever made. Starting with the animated blowing, popping bubbles, the entrance to the Daytime Awards, the usual phony drivel spewed by the stars on the red carpet, the rehearsed and badly acted acceptance speech, the venomous comments uttered by the actor's jealous co-stars and producer, under phony smiles. Now THAT is only in the first few minutes. Then, all hell breaks loose from there and it only gets more frantic and ridiculous. Ridiculous in a good way, no, make that a great way. This was the first time I'd seen the always charming Teri Hatcher. While I may not be a follower of Desperate Housewives, she herself is always watchable - same goes for Lois & Clark. Not a huge follower, but if I run across an episode I'd watch it. Robert Downey, jr., does a great turn as slimy, smarmy, snaky, sycophantic David Seaton Barnes, the producer who'd give his right eye to see Sally Field's Celeste Talbert leave the show, if only to finally get to get it on with Cathy Moriarty's Montana Moorehead.

Moriarty absolutely shines in this movie, just as she had everywhere else she's appeared. Here, all she has to do is scream "I HATE YOU I HATE YOU YOU CREEP!" or give one of her anti-Celeste-co-conspirators an evil grin, and she has me rolling in the aisles. Yes, Cathy Moriarty is a very gifted actress, and one hell of a comedienne. Sally Field gratefully departs from the usual 70-MM-sized Lifetime Tragedy of the Week movies, and we're all reminded why she is who she is today, having started off in comedy afraid of nothing. Her ensuing years of drama had hidden her sense of humor, but like a caterpillar in a cocoon, the brilliant comedienne she is had blossomed and it was joyous to see her as hilarious as she was. The thing with dramatic actors and actresses is that you see in such heavy, serious roles, that you associate them with their character and you can't believe it when you see them finally having some fun on screen.

How lucky were the producers to land Carrie Fisher, if only for a glorified cameo. She doesn't realize what a presence she bears on screen. She takes a role which, in the hands of a lesser actress, could easily have been forgotten, but she owns the character and it seems as if she wrote it herself.

How lucky was Elisabeth Shue to get thrown in the middle of all this! At the time, she wasn't really known for much. Adventures in Babysitting was kind of cute (yes, I was dragged to an evening show for which I had to pay full price), but she didn't hold my attention - - much. But here, she makes the most of her character - star's niece who falls in love with the star's ex-co-star-and-lover who, of course, turns out to be the niece's father, and the star turns out to be the poor girl's mother.

I'll stop there - I feel I practically wrote a book about this brilliant screwball comedy, or at least a novela. If you've seen it, then reminisce. If you haven't, you've missed a real classic, but not really. The DVD's are made of a material that'll last for at least 25 years, and this movie is timeless, so what the hell.
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The Sun Does NOT Also Suck ! A gem, get addicted !
lizziebeth-127 June 2002
Warning: Spoilers
WARNING: POSSIBLE SPOILERS (but not really - keep reading). Ahhh, there are so many reasons to become utterly addicted to this spoof gem that I won't have room to list them all. The opening credits set the playful scene with kitsch late 1950s cartoon stills; an enchanting Peres 'Prez' Prado mambo theme which appears to be curiously uncredited (but his grunts are unmistakable, and no-one else did them); and with familiar cast names, including Kathy Najimi a full year before she hit with Sister Acts 1 & 2 plus Teri Hatcher from TV's Superman.

Every scene is imbued with shallow injustices flung at various actors, actresses and producers in daytime TV. Peeking behind the careers of these people is all just an excuse for an old-fashioned, delicious farce. Robert Harling penned this riotous spoof that plays like an issue of MAD Magazine, but feels like a gift to us in the audience. Some of the cliched characters are a bit dim, but everyone is drizzling with high jealousy, especially against Celeste Talbert (Sally Field) who is the show's perennial award-winning lead, nicknamed "America's Sweetheart". The daytime Emmies-like awards opening does introduce us to Celeste's show, The Sun Also Sets. Against all vain fears to the contrary, Celeste wins again. She is overjoyed, because it's always "such a genuine thrill": "Adam, did you watch? I won! Well, nguh..." The reason for Adam's absence soon becomes the justification for the entire plot, and we're instantly off on a trip with Celeste's neuroses. She cries, screeches, and wrings her hands though the rest of the movie while her dresser Tawnee (Kathy Najimi, constantly waddling after Celeste, unseen through Celeste's fog of paranoia) indulges a taste for Tammy Faye Baker, for which Tawnee had been in fact specifically hired.

Rosie Schwartz (Whoopi Goldberg) has seen it all before. She is the head writer of the show, and she and Celeste have been excellent support networks to each other for 15 years. So when Celeste freaks, Rosie offers to write her off the show for six months: "We'll just say that Maggie went to visit with the Dalai Lama." But Celeste has doubts: "I thought that the Dalai Lama moved to LA." "-Well, then, some other lama, Fernando Lamas, come on!". Such a skewering line must be rather affronting to still living beefcake actor Lorenzo Lamas, son of aforementioned Fernando Lamas (d. 1982).

Those who can remember the economics teacher (Ben Stein) in Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986) as he deadeningly calls the roll ("Bueller. Bueller. Bueller"), will take secret pleasure from seeing him again as a nitwit writer. Other well hidden member of the cast include Garry Marshall (in real life Mr Happy Days and brother of Penny), who "gets paid $1.2 million to make the command decisions" on The Sun Also Sets - he says he definitely likes "peppy and cheap"; and Carrie Fisher as Betsy Faye Sharon, who's "a bitch".

Geoffrey Anderson (Kevin Kline) is the "yummy-with-a-spoon" (and he is, by the way) dinner theater actor now rescued from his Hell by David Seaton Barnes (Robert Downey Jr), and brought back to the same show he was canned from 20 years earlier. Of course this presents some logical challenges for the current scriptwriters because his character, Rod Randall, was supposed to have been decapitated all those years ago. Somehow they work out the logical difficulties, and Geoffrey Anderson steps off the choo-choo.

Celeste can now only get worse, and her trick of going across the Washington bridge no longer helps. First, her hands shake as she tries to put on mascara, but she soon degenerates into a stalker. Unfortunately, she cannot get rid of Geoffrey Anderson so easily. Geoffrey's been promised development of his one-man play about Hamlet, and he means to hold the producer to that promise. "I'm not going back to Florida no-how!", argues Geoffrey. "You try playing Willie Loman in front of a bunch of old farts eating meatloaf !" And indeed, seeing Geoffrey's dinner theater lifestyle amongst all the hocking and accidents is hilarious. Back in Florida in his Willie Loman fat suit in his room, Geoffrey Anderson used to chafe at being called to stage as "Mr Loman". He was forced to splat whatever cockroaches crawled across his TV with a shoe, and to use pliers instead of the broken analog channel changer. Now he find himself as the yummy surgeon dating Laurie Craven, the show's new ingenue; so he's not leaving.

Beautiful Elizabeth Shue (as Laurie) rounds out the amazing ensemble cast who all do the fantastic job of those who know the stereotypes all too well. But, of course, the course to true love never did run smoothly. Montana Moorehead (Cathy Moriarty) is getting impatient waiting for her star to rise, and is getting desperate for some publicity.

Will her plots finally succeed? Will Celeste settle her nerves, or will she kill Tawnee first? Will the producer get Mr Fuzzy? -You'll just have to watch * the second half * of this utterly lovable, farcically malicious riot.

And you'll really have to see to believe how the short-sighted Geoffrey reads his lines without glasses live off the TelePrompter. If you are not in stitches with stomach-heaving laughter and tears pouring down your face, feel free to demand your money back for the video rental. Soapdish (1991) is an unmissable gem that you will need to see again and again, because it's not often that a movie can deliver so amply with so many hilarious lines. This is very well-crafted humor, almost all of it in the writing. A draw with Blazing Saddles (1974) for uproarious apoplexy value, although otherwise dissimilar. Watch it and weep. A happy source for anyone's video addiction. 10 out of 10.
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A gotta see every so often movie.
alhurlbut14 December 2006
This is one of those movies - like Dave, American Dreamer and Local Hero - that holds a viewer's interest time and again. Lightweight movies seldom win Oscars, but whoever did the casting for Soapdish deserves one. Even after one has seen the movie and knows what is coming, it's still enjoyable to watch how the various plot facets develop. True, all the drama is melodrama; but that's entirely fitting for a movie with a soap opera background. My favorite line comes from Whoopi Goldberg: "Now why can't I write sh*t like that?" I think it's unfortunate that the TV and website censors insist on all this unnecessary sanitation.
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"At last, drama!"
Son_of_Mansfield6 April 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Fast paced and funny satire about that original "reality TV", the soap opera. The script by playwright Robert Harling is packed with one liners and ridiculous situations. The best of them is the climax, a live broadcast that quickly deteriorates into bad improv and a brain transplant. Keven Kline's murdering of his lines, due to not wearing his glasses, is hilarious. "Her brain will laterally explore within the next few houses." The brilliant cast is on the same page as Kline. Sally Field, Elizabeth Shue, Cathy Moriarty, Robert Downey Jr., Whoopi Goldberg, Teri Hatcher, Garry Marshall, and Kathy Najimy are all perfect. It is a treat to see a cast click like it does in this movie. This is a classic that has somehow slipped through the cracks.

P.S. The score by Alan Silvestri is an added bonus. It fits the soap opera with it's flamboyant and melodramatic air.
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I forgot how much I loved this movie...
cltclj24 April 2006
till HBO began rerunning it this month. I remember laughing out loud in the theater back in 1991, and now again in my living room. If I see that it's on, I have to watch it. There's just no question. This is so much more entertaining to me than other, more popular spoofs like Airplane! (which I really like, BTW). Cathy Moriarty steals the show in my opinion. Quotes like "Sudden speech! The last symptoms of brain fever! She could blow at any moment!" put me over the edge. And Whoopie Goldberg hasn't been this funny since 'Jumpin' Jack Flash'. Kevin Klein, Sally Field, Robert Downey Jr. all turn in superb performances as expected. I started out giving this 9 out of 10 stars, but then I realized that for the type of film it's supposed to be, there isn't one thing I'd change or improve upon. So 10 it is. I have to get this on DVD, that's just all there is to it.
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Very funny
DeeNine-25 May 2005
This is a romantic comedy with the emphasis on comedy for a change. As usual the lovers--Sally Field as almost-over-the-hill soap opera queen, Celeste Talbert; and Kevin Kline as marginally employed and marginally talented actor, Jeffrey Anderson--are working at cross purposes, seemingly unaware that they are madly in love, etc. Owing a little to Bette Davis's Margo Channing in All About Eve (1950) and a whole lot to the slapstick theatrical tradition, Sally Field goes over the top towards hilarity as she malaprops her way to love and happiness. Kevin Kline, one of the more underrated leading men of recent years, is also very good and very winning as he manages to be handsome, vulnerable, egotistical and lovable all at the same time.

The misadventures center around Celeste's fear of losing her audience as she has entered her forties, and reach the crisis point with the arrival of her niece, aspiring actress Cori Craven (Elisabeth Shue) who turns out NOT to be her niece, with ensuing plot complications. Cori manages to get a small part in the soap opera as a homeless deaf mute before discovering her true relationship to Celeste (and to Jeffrey Anderson as well)--but never mind.

As a romantic counterpoint or foil to the leads are Robert Downey Jr. (soap opera director, David Barnes) and Cathy Moriarty (Montana and Nurse Nan). David Barnes is oh so hot for her, but she cares only about one thing: getting rid of Celeste so that she might shine more brightly on the set. To this end she gets Barnes to do all sorts of things to wreck Celeste's career, but through happenstance and/or a perverse logic, all his attempts go awry, much to the delight of the viewer.

Whoopie Goldberg plays Rose Schwartz, the show's chief writer and Celeste's alter-ego and confidant while Carrie Fisher has a modest part as the hard-as-nails producer of the show.

I thought this was funnier than the only other spoof of the soap opera world that I have seen (Young Doctors in Love 1982 which burlesqued TV's General Hospital and was pretty good). Soapdish is funnier with a daffy script and plenty of laugh-out-loud one-liners and terrific performances by Field, Kline and Downy, Jr. But see this for Sally Field who is outstanding.

(Note: Over 500 of my movie reviews are now available in my book "Cut to the Chaise Lounge or I Can't Believe I Swallowed the Remote!" Get it at Amazon!)
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great soap opera comedy!!have fun with it!!
Doc_Who28 September 1999
This movie is about a fictional soap opera. It is very fast and funny. To say anything else would ruin the movie. There are several plots and sub plots in the movie. This movie has ensemble cast with today's hottest stars. They all gives over the top performances. This movie is favorite of mine from the year 1991. Soapdish is perfect for fans of either daytime soap opera /or prime time soap opera!!!If you watch soap go check this movie it's hilarious!!!
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Good Clean Funny Movie
jimmylee-113 July 2006
I don't watch soaps. My grandmother still watches that one with the hour glass. I made fun of them it when I was ten (it was so easy).

But this movie takes parody and spells it a new way. I found the story pretty damn funny. The fashions of the 80's - shoulder pads, sequins, and polyester - just top it off. The huge hair, the high heels, and the histrionics - what a combination.

And all the actors just go to town, chewing up their parts and spitting them out in a big well scripted pile. Sally, Kevin, Elisabeth - wonderful! Whoopi - great! Robert Downey - refreshing to see him back when he had such potential, before the tabloids. And Garry: why did we have to wait so long to see him on film? Leesa Gibbons - hadn't been missing her, but nice to include her as a real life entertainment reporter (and where do you apply for THAT job, anyway?).

Admittedly, I could have done without Sally climbing the drainpipe. Lucy Ricardo did it, how many times?, as has every comedienne from Carol Burnett to I don't know who and I'm so done with it now, I could spit peanuts if I had them. Apparently it's what you do when you're being funny in a tall building in New York. I'm just thankful they didn't pull out the flagpole bit.

But it was cute, it was funny, it had plot twists, it had an after credits ending before that was common, it had clothes worthy of a second glance, it had a great cast and it's got personal memories for me. Really, what more do you need?
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Day time TV send up
gcd7011 August 2007
Very funny comedy from director Michael Hoffman and writer Robert Harling about a group of people whose 'soap opera' lives are more dramatic and interesting than the ones they portray in their daytime TV show, "The Sun Also Sets".

The whole huge cast, including Sally Field, Kevin Kline, Elisabeth Shue, Robert Downey Jnr, Carrie Fisher, Teri Hatcher, Garry Marshall, Kathy Najimy and Cathy Moriarty, play off each other well, producing some very funny moments, while Whoopi Goldberg is delightful. Not of the great script select, however "Soapdish" is all good fun as it sends up that institution of daytime T.V., soap opera!

Friday, October 18, 1991 - Knox District Centre
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One of the better satires about daytime TV shows.
RJBurke194228 December 2006
Way back in 1955, the British made a comedy called Simon and Laura, with Peter Finch and the brilliant Kay Kendall. To this day, it stands as one of the finest examples of British comedy and, more particularly, about how television sitcoms become so popular. It was, and is, an excellent example also of self-referential cinema.

So also Soapdish, a film I'd never heard about until a few nights ago when I caught it on late TV. I was a bit dubious at first simply because comedy is so difficult to do well, as you know.

However, I was pleasantly surprised and delighted to watch a very clever satire about daytime American TV. In fact, it's been a while since I laughed so heartily. So, if you like satire, I'd recommend you see it.

The main actors – Sally Field, Kevin Kline, Robert Downey and Cathy Moriarty – quite simply do an excellent job, revealing just how bitchy and shallow the business of acting is. As I watched it, I kept thinking to myself: just how much of this bitchiness carries over into real life? That is, if actors ever do have a real life? As you probably know, Peter Sellers, for example, was notorious for hiding his true persona behind a multitude of characters, so that nobody really knew the real person. So, as I watched Sally Field playing Celeste Talbot playing Maggie, I thought again about that earlier British film with Kay Kendall playing Laura playing a character in a TV sitcom opposite Peter Finch...

Is it any wonder that some actors have nervous breakdowns? And that feeling was crystallized when Celeste finally confronts her daughter (Lori, played by Elizabeth Shue) and, in an emotional moment, repeats the fictional lines she'd used, on a prior episode of her daytime soap, when confronting her fictional daughter in that show! Are you confused? Well, it's not all like that, but the dialog is stunning for originality, comedy, bitchiness, anger, depravity, duplicity, and

The story? Well, there are many stories in this film, all interwoven, and which all come together at the end (of course – but not like a Robert Altman film, okay!), and not all of them are resolved finally. Life's not like that anyway, right? The pace is almost frenetic, and you really do have to watch and listen carefully to catch all the sight gags and subtle jokes. Spend the 97 minutes from your life and watch it; you won't regret the time usage.

The rest of the cast all perform well, although I've never taken much to Whoopi Goldberg. Perhaps the funniest exchanges are between Robert Downey and Cathy Moriarty and, for my money, the latter steals so many scenes from others, she gets my vote as the outstanding player. I kid you not, she gives the term bitch an entirely new face...
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Funny Funny Funny
DPerson6262 July 2006
Anyone who doesn't laugh all through this movie has been embalmed. I have watched it at least twenty times and I still get tears in my eyes at many of the scenes. Sally Field is absolutely perfect as Celest Talbert, a fading soap star whose supporting cast is trying to get her replaced in hopes that their own star will rise. Fields, at 45, still has that wonderful and beautiful pixie quality and a perfect figure that belies her having had three children. I'm biased, I'm in love with her.

The cast of "Soapdish" is filled with stars who perform their roles to perfection. Kevin Kline is flawless, as are Robert Downey Jr., an ingénue Elizabeth Shue, Whoopi Goldberg, Teri Hatcher in one of her early roles, Carrie Fisher as the oversexed casting director who auditions an actor for a small part as a waiter without his shirt on. Kathy Najimy is wonderful as the hapless costume designer, and best of all, Cathy Moriarty as Nurse Nan who leads the plot to get Fields character removed from the show is hilarious.

This movie should have won Oscars for best comedy, best leading lady in a comedy, best leading man in a comedy and myriad other bests, including writing, directing and supporting actors and actresses. Get the DVD so you can watch it over and over for the next twenty five years. You will still be laughing at it when the disc wears out.
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Screwball comedy of the nineties. Soooo funny!!!
jangu16 November 2002
There are few comedies like this, where almost every line and every character come close to flawless. This is soooo funny!! And it has quite a bit of satire there to. Sally Field is heading the field of truly outstanding actors and does a good, if not perfect, job with her daytime tv-diva. Sometimes her acting is just a little to broad and over the top, but 90 % of the time she is a riot! In the same league is Kevin Kline, Robert Downey Jr and Whoopy Goldberg (who unfortunately has too little to do here). Downey jr may not convince entirely as a comedian and has not the timing right all the time, but he struggles with his part which is, to be honest, the most ungrateful one. But the shining star here is Cathy Moriarty as Celeste, a true bitch if there ever was one with more than one nasty secret (you will see in the absolutely stunning finale!). Sadly Elisabeth Shue never seems to be quite comfortable in her part. I normally like Ms Shue, but here she acts as a fish out of water and sometimes seems to be in a different movie. But it is not something damaging and for the most part she is at least adequate. Otherwise, brimming with memorable lines and situations, this is a comedy to watch whenever it is on TV or wherever.
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Great Movie!
regnilhcan17 January 2005
I have been a fan of this movie for years and years. Because of Teri Hatchers move into the forefront, I had to take the movie off the shelf and watch it. Why people back in 1991 did not see how wonderful this movie was in beyond me? Sally Field and Kevin Kline are beyond fabulous. Although I never have watching daytime soap operas, this movie kills me every time I watch it. The acting is second to none for a comedy and the writing is so smart. I highly recommend that you watch this if you haven't already. You will get to see Elizabeth Shue, Whoopi Goldberg, Teri Hatcher, and Carrie name a few...all give splendid performances.
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A Soap Opera Within a Soap Opera
chimera312 October 2017
Warning: Spoilers
When I was a kid, my mom became so obsessed with soap operas that she actually recorded them and it drove me and my brother nuts. To this day, we still have no idea why she did that. At any rate, she was watching this movie on TV one day and my brother and I happened to walk in on it, not that she had anything to hide. From the moment that we sat down, all of us were on the floor laughing.

For a fake soap opera like "The Sun Also Sets" (the one in the movie, of course), you have your fair share of drama not just on the set but off it as well. The head drama queen is Celeste Talbert (Sally Field), who is practically the star of the show and everyone else around her is fighting for a place in the spotlight. You have David (Robert Downey, Jr.), one of the studio's producers; Rose Schwartz (Whoopi Goldberg), the show's writer; Montana Moorehead (Cathy Moriarty), who is in love with David; and the list goes on.

As time wears on, you have Lori Craven (Elisabeth Shue), Celeste's long-lost daughter, enter the picture. And then...let's not forget Jeffrey Anderson (Kevin Kline), Celeste's former love interest and Lori's father. The comedic chaos comes to a head when Celeste (in a tearful speech true to Sally Field form) admits on set to Lori that she is the daughter of her and Jeffrey in front of the entire crew.

Lori, of course, comes to accept that Celeste and Jeffrey are her parents and lays down an agreement that allows her some space. Perhaps one of the best scenes in the movie comes in the very end when Rose and Monica DeMonaco (Teri Hatcher's soap opera character) come on set to reveal that Montana Moorehead is in fact...a man by the name of Milton Moorehead. Of course, this doesn't go well for Montana/Milton and she/he storms off, causing everyone to go into stunned silence.

With a cast of characters that ranges from Sally Field to Teri Hatcher, you cannot ask for anything more with this priceless comedy. It is a guarantee that you will laugh until your sides ache and you fall to the floor with your hands on your stomach. It is just that funny. Watch it once and then watch it again.
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Nurse Sally
tedg3 December 2003
Warning: Spoilers
Spoilers herein.

`Nurse Betty' is something special, a high watermark in the abstract reasoning it demands of an audience. The complexities of what is real and fiction are pretty folded.

`Betty' relies on this, and this relies on `Tootsie.' But of the three, this is the only one that is actually fun to watch. That's because it is structured to encourage the sort of hammy acting it satirizes. And these players know what to do: Kline is always clever in his narrow way (he had actually just done a `Hamlet' of the type he goofs about), but Whoopie and Sally are at the top of their game in an Almodovar-ian way. That's where you reflect the layering of the plot (a soap about a soap) on the style of acting.

Sally deserved better roles. She knows how to do folded acting, even the kind where one fold is serious and the simultaneous other is comedic. Here, the whole cast - especially Downey - is in on the joke.

I am convinced that most of the players, and especially Sally, were doped up.

Ted's Evaluation -- 3 of 3: Worth watching.
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An Amusing Lampoon of the World of Daytime Drama
ijonesiii23 December 2005
Though nowhere near as good as TOOTSIE, SOAPDISH is an amusing spoof of the world of daytime drama with a funny story and an impressive all-star cast. Sally Field, who unveils a skill for slapstick comedy that she had shelved for many years, is on target as Celeste, the aging soap diva of THE SUN ALSO SETS, afraid that she is past her prime and constantly complaining about her story lines, co-stars, wardrobe and anything else she can think of. Kevin Kline is charming, as always, as Celeste's ex-husband, who is tracked down at a dinner theater in Florida playing Willy Loman, to come onto the soap to make trouble for Celeste. Robert Downey Jr. steals every scene he is in as one of the producers of the show, who is being cuckolded by another cast member (a wonderfully bitchy Cathy Moriarty)to get Celeste off the show. Whoopi Goldberg plays the show's head writer and Celeste's best friend, who has one very amusing scene at a New Jersey mall where she pretends to recognize Celeste from the soap and fawns all over her, apparently something she and Celeste do from time to time to massage Celeste's delicate ego. Elisabeth Shue also charms as an actress with a secret who joins the show and there are also funny bits from Kathy Najimy, Carrie Fisher, and Teri Hatcher. Despite manic direction and an uneven screenplay, SOAPDISH is still a lot of fun and worth checking out, whether or not you watch soaps.
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