165 user 103 critic

Get Shorty (1995)

2:37 | Trailer
A mobster travels to Hollywood to collect a debt, and discovers that the movie business is much the same as his current job.


Barry Sonnenfeld


Elmore Leonard (novel), Scott Frank (screenplay)
1,425 ( 400)
Won 1 Golden Globe. Another 5 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
John Travolta ... Chili Palmer
Gene Hackman ... Harry Zimm
Rene Russo ... Karen Flores
Danny DeVito ... Martin Weir
Dennis Farina ... Ray 'Bones' Barboni
Delroy Lindo ... Bo Catlett
James Gandolfini ... Bear
Jon Gries ... Ronnie Wingate
Renee Props ... Nicki
David Paymer ... Leo Devoe
Martin Ferrero ... Tommy Carlo
Miguel Sandoval ... Mr. Escobar
Jacob Vargas ... Yayo Portillo
Linda Hart ... Fay Devoe
Bobby Slayton ... Dick Allen


Some guys get all the luck, whether they like it or not. Chili Palmer happens to be in Hollywood collecting a gambling debt when he's struck by lightning (not literally). Called a natural for the movie business, he's snagged up by a producer. The rest is history. Written by Joshua Davis <xtnb64a@prodigy.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Attitude Plays a Part. See more »


Comedy | Crime | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Quentin Tarantino had been planning to direct a prequel to Reservoir Dogs (1992) and Pulp Fiction (1994), called "The Vega Brothers". Michael Madsen played Mr. Blonde (Vic Vega) in Reservoir Dogs (1992) and John Travolta played Vincent Vega in Pulp Fiction (1994). Madsen and Travolta became too old to reprise their iconic roles, so Tarantino abandoned the project. Gene Hackman co-starred with "The Vega Brothers". Hackman with Madsen in Wyatt Earp (1994), incidentally, Madsen turned down being Vincent Vega to be in Wyatt Earp (1994), and Hackman with Travolta in this movie. See more »


When Bo is looking at the newspaper article about Zimm and Ray ("Horror Film Producer Questioned in Shooting"), the first and third columns of text visible above the article are identical. See more »


[first lines]
Tommy Carlo: It's fucking cold outside.
See more »

Alternate Versions

A line of dialogue from John Travolta is missing from the UK 2-disc edition. The line "So You're Trying to Say You're Never Gonna Sleep Again?" comes directly after the credits as a question to Martin Ferrero's character. The line is dubbed and subtitled, and the music plays out as usual, so it's not an audio glitch. The line is present on the first UK MGM-release. See more »


Referenced in Top Gear: Hammond Invents People Carrier Racing (2004) See more »


I Had My Chance
Written by Mark Sandman
Performed by Morphine
Courtesy of Rykodisc
By Arrangement with Ocean Park Music Group
See more »

User Reviews

Great characters, simply a good comedy with a waterproof plot
19 May 2007 | by dragonshieldSee all my reviews

"Get Shorty" is a celebration of that usual Barry Sonnenfeld style of film making. Great characters, done by a great cast including John Travolta, Gene Hackman, Rene Russo, Danny DeVito, Dennis Farina, Delroy Lindo and.. Well the list just goes on and on. A perfect mix-up of that so called "character-comedy", a movie progressing and dependant on the characters, making it hilarious comedy chaos.

The best thing about this film is obviously the whole cast, John Travolta as the smooth bad ass Chili Palmer, Gene Hackman as the hectic Harry Zimm. A bit unusual role from Hackman, which also makes the character so hilariously surreal. Rene Russo as "the girl" Karen Flores, Danny DeVito as the movie star Martin Weir with a huge ego, Dennis Farina as the loud mouth usual himself Ray 'Bones' Barboni. Delroy Lindo as the tough Bo Catlett and James Gandolfini as Bo's bodyguard, failed stuntman Bear. Everyone just simply click together, which makes the movie even better than it actually is. It's just all about the characters. Chili Palmer must be one of the coolest characters ever seen on the big screen.

Like mentioned before, Barry Sonnenfeld is the director of the movie and I honestly can't imagine anyone else directing a movie with a screenplay like this except Steven Soderbergh, the director of for example both "Ocean's Eleven" and "Ocean's Twelve". I think that Sonnenfeld's and Soderbergh's styles connect together, they are very similar. And if they'd do a British version of the movie, the director would be Guy Ritchie without a doubt. If you recognised both Soderbergh and Ritchie, then you know the style I'm talking about and if you like both of their movies you should see "Get Shorty". The other thing similar between these three directors besides the directing is the music used in their films. It's that usual horns and trumpets, giving that funky and exciting feeling for the film. It just fits for movies like these, creating that what is needed for the style. It also connects with the cinematography as well; Sudden movements of the angles, sudden stops, shots really close of the faces in these specific angles and when you add the music to that it's voilá.

"Get Shorty" is all in all a great comedy with a plot that doesn't go over the silliness level. Sometimes movies like these go over that level, which usually make them funnier but also makes the whole story so unbelievable that it just isn't enjoyable as a movie anymore. Well the movie itself isn't THAT serious, it's a comedy after all, but it's definitely some quality entertainment. It includes a nice storyline, great characters and directing that just doesn't let you down. I recommend this movie to everyone once again. It's not amazing or phenomenal, it's a nice piece of entertainment, keeping you glued to your sofa throughout. What more can you ask for a boring Friday evening?

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Release Date:

20 October 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Get Shorty See more »


Box Office


$30,250,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$12,700,007, 22 October 1995

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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