6.6/10
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59 user 26 critic

Grumpier Old Men (1995)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Romance | 22 December 1995 (USA)
Trailer
1:58 | Trailer

On TV

Airs Sat. Mar. 23, 5:00 PM on CMTV

ON DISC
John and Max resolve to save their beloved bait shop from turning into an Italian restaurant, just as its new female owner catches Max's attention.

Director:

Howard Deutch

Writers:

Mark Steven Johnson (characters), Mark Steven Johnson
2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Walter Matthau ... Max Goldman
Jack Lemmon ... John Gustafson
Sophia Loren ... Maria Sophia Coletta Ragetti
Ann-Margret ... Ariel Gustafson
Burgess Meredith ... Grandpa Gustafson
Daryl Hannah ... Melanie Gustafson
Kevin Pollak ... Jacob Goldman
Katie Sagona ... Allie, Melanie's Daughter
Ann Morgan Guilbert ... Mama Ragetti (as Ann Guilbert)
James Andelin James Andelin ... Sven
Marcus Klemp Marcus Klemp ... Eddie, Assistant Manager
Max Wright ... County Health Inspector
Cheryl Hawker ... Lena
Wayne A. Evenson Wayne A. Evenson ... Handsome Hans
Allison Levine Allison Levine ... Assistant at Dog Pound
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Storyline

Things don't seem to change much in Wabasha County: Max and John are still fighting after 35 years, Grandpa still drinks, smokes, and chases women , and nobody's been able to catch the fabled "Catfish Hunter", a gigantic catfish that actually smiles at fishermen who try to snare it. Six months ago John married the new girl in town (Ariel), and people begin to suspect that Max might be missing something similar in his life. The only joy Max claims is left in his life is fishing, but that might change with the new owner of the bait shop. Written by Murray Chapman <muzzle@cs.uq.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Still Yelling. Still Fighting. Still Ready For Love.

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for salty language and innuendos | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Italian | German

Release Date:

22 December 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Grumpy Old Men 2 See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$69,870,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

SDDS

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film cast includes three Oscar winners: Jack Lemmon, Sophia Loren and Walter Matthau; and two Oscar nominees: Ann-Margret and Burgess Meredith. See more »

Goofs

During the "Chicken Dance" scene, when the couple are fighting, the dancing doesn't match the music. The Chicken Dance has a specific set of actions for various points in the song - this was blatantly off. See more »

Quotes

Ariel Gustafson: [Upset at John] John, how could you?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Outtakes are run beneath the closing credits, including Burgess Meredith giving many different bawdy names for the Hawaiian island he visited, and the line he uses to invite Maria's mother back to his room. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Top 10 Sequels That Aren't as Bad as Everyone Says (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Get Me To The Church On Time
Written by Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Our Second Visit to Wabasha, Minnesota
25 July 2005 | by theowinthropSee all my reviews

Sequels are rarely half as good as the original film. Matthau and Lennon would prove this at the tale end of their film partnership with THE ODD COUPLE PART II. But it has happened. ANOTHER THIN MAN is as good a film as THE THIN MAN. Vincent Minelli's follow up to FATHER OF THE BRIDE may lack the satire of weddings the original had, but FATHER'S LITTLE DIVIDEND is well made and entertaining in it's own right. And then there is this film. Of the first movie, GRUMPY OLD MEN, I have made a comment elsewhere. GRUMPIER OLD MEN is a neat follow-up, as we find how Max Goldman (Matthau) finds his new mate, Maria Ragetti (Sophia Loren). It also settles the future of Max's son Mayor Jacob Goldman (Kevin Pollak) and John Gustafson's (Lemmon's) daughter Melanie (Darryl Hannah), and gives a bitter-sweet farewell to John's father (Burgess Meredith).

I think the reason the sequel works is that there is a sense of time and continuity here that is not usually found. In GRUMPY OLD MEN, the reactions of Lemmon and Matthau to the death of their close friend Chuck (Ossie Davis), who had only recently been their rival for Ariel (Ann-Margaret) showed them to be human beings - not just two good comic actors trading insults for yucks. Here, it is watching the final scenes of Grandpa Gustafson (ironically Burgess Meredith's final role - and a fittingly good one for that fine actor). In the first film Meredith was always acting like a wild authority figure: over ninety years old, but threatening to tan the hides of the middle aged Matthau and Lennon like they were still kids when he stops them fighting. Here we see him in several guises. He is a loving grandpa - he is seen telling Allie (Katie Sagona) the story of Goldilock and the Three Bears (with his own modern interpolations), and then singing "Dream a Little Dream of Me" to put her to sleep. He is vulgar, but in a loving, sensible way. When Allie swallows a quarter, he suggests that it is normal - all kids swallow or try to swallow coins - and one only should worry if the kid excretes two dimes and nickel. He loves sexual encounters (in the first film he suggests that if Lemmon and Matthau can't get Arial he can!). Here he meets somebody to romance (Anne Gilbert), and they have a nice time together. But it is a brief one. Having reached 95, God finally comes for Grandpa, and his death manages to bring the other characters from cross purpose quarrels to sanity. It also brings the sweet image of Gilbert depositing a rose over the spot that Grandpa's ashes are scattered.

The continuity theme is also in the portion about "Catfish Hunter" the local lake legendary catfish. Grandpa tells John, at one point, that the catfish was old when he was a boy (which begs the question, why did they name the catfish after a major Yankee baseball player of the 1970 teams? - long after Grandpa's youth). The locals all hope to catch the fish and mount it on their walls. We see it at one point jumping late at night, alone, into the air and back into the late in the glorious moonlight - the monarch of the lake. But at the end, when the catfish is caught by Matthau and Lemmon together, Lemmon (probably influenced by Ann-Margaret, who did the same thing in the first film) gets Matthau to agree to return the catfish to the lake, where it can join Grandpa's ashes. So the legend is returned to it's base.

Even in the final moments of the film, with another marriage and a joke reminiscent of the first film's conclusion, suggests continuity. So there is a type of structural vigor in the two films, that strengthens their stories and increases the viewers pleasure watching them. Yes indeed, this is one sequel that works very well.


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