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The Big Lebowski (1998)

R | | Comedy, Crime | 6 March 1998 (USA)
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Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski, mistaken for a millionaire of the same name, seeks restitution for his ruined rug and enlists his bowling buddies to help get it.

Directors:

Joel Coen, Ethan Coen (uncredited)

Writers:

Ethan Coen, Joel Coen
Popularity
400 ( 34)

A Guide to the Films of the Coen Brothers

From Blood Simple to the new The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, we take a look at the offbeat stylings of Academy Award-winners Joel and Ethan Coen.

Dude, let's go bowling

Top Rated Movies #178 | 5 wins & 17 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jeff Bridges ... The Dude
John Goodman ... Walter Sobchak
Julianne Moore ... Maude Lebowski
Steve Buscemi ... Theodore Donald 'Donny' Kerabatsos
David Huddleston ... The Big Lebowski
Philip Seymour Hoffman ... Brandt
Tara Reid ... Bunny Lebowski
Philip Moon ... Woo, Treehorn Thug
Mark Pellegrino ... Blond Treehorn Thug
Peter Stormare ... Nihilist #1, Uli Kunkel / 'Karl Hungus'
Flea ... Nihilist #2, Kieffer
Torsten Voges ... Nihilist #3, Franz
Jimmie Dale Gilmore Jimmie Dale Gilmore ... Smokey
Jack Kehler ... Marty
John Turturro ... Jesus Quintana
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Storyline

When "the dude" Lebowski is mistaken for a millionaire Lebowski, two thugs urinate on his rug to coerce him into paying a debt he knows nothing about. While attempting to gain recompense for the ruined rug from his wealthy counterpart, he accepts a one-time job with high pay-off. He enlists the help of his bowling buddy, Walter, a gun-toting Jewish-convert with anger issues. Deception leads to more trouble, and it soon seems that everyone from porn empire tycoons to nihilists want something from The Dude. Written by ahmetkozan

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Her life was in their hands. Now her toe is in the mail. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive strong language, drug content, sexuality and brief violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | UK

Language:

English | German | Hebrew | Spanish

Release Date:

6 March 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Big Lebowski See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,533,844, 8 March 1998

Gross USA:

$18,034,458

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$46,735,469
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The diner in which Walter and The Dude have a cup of coffee during the toe scene is the same diner from the later scenes of American History X (1998). It is located at Wilshire and Fairfax in Los Angeles, California. It's called Johnie's Coffee Shop, and has long been closed. It's only used for filming. See more »

Goofs

After Walter throws the ringer out the car window over the wooden bridge, he bales out of the car at 15 MPH and lands on the asphalt. As the Dude transitions to the driver's seat, he crashes the car into a telephone pole. In the cut shot from the car back to the bridge, the three nihilists are seen speeding off over the bridge on their motorcycles in the opposite direction. Walter is nowhere to be seen although he should be lying there in the road between the car and the bridge. In the next shot from the bridge, Walter rises from the pavement in the left lane where he landed as the Dude runs toward the bridge shouting "We have it." See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
The Stranger: [voiceover] Way out west there was this fella... fella I wanna tell ya about. Fella by the name of Jeff Lebowski. At least that was the handle his loving parents gave him, but he never had much use for it himself. Mr. Lebowski, he called himself "The Dude". Now, "Dude" - that's a name no one would self-apply where I come from. But then there was a lot about the Dude that didn't make a whole lot of sense. And a lot about where he lived, likewise. But then again, maybe that's why I ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Production Goddess ... Karyn Anonia See more »

Alternate Versions

When Comedy Central, in removing the 200+ "fucks" from the movie, was attempting to edit the scene where Walter is smashing the car, they didn't know how to cut Walter saying "do you see what happens when you fuck a stranger in the ass" without having to do severe, overly obvious editing which would look fake. To solve this they decided just to re-dub it, and the phrase they chose? "Do you see what happens when you find a stranger in the Alps?". See more »


Soundtracks

Viva Las Vegas
Written by Doc Pomus and Mort Shuman
Performed by Shawn Colvin
Published by Pomus Songs, Inc. / Mort Shuman Songs
Administered by Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp. / Elvis Presley Music (BMI)
Courtesy of Columbia Records
By Arrangement with Sony Music Licensing
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

The film with the highest rewatchability factor of all time
3 November 2015 | by gogoschka-1See all my reviews

It's actually kind of hard to describe this movie (and what's so great about it) to people who don't already know it and love it; as with many cult films, The Big Lebowski will either speak to you (in which case you will become a fervent follower of His Dudeness and abide by his code for the rest of your life) or, if it doesn't, the film will either leave you completely indifferent or you'll even downright hate it.

I believe it's a very funny film and I'm sure it can be rightfully called a comedy, but don't expect punchlines, gags, jokes or slapstick - it's not that kind of comedy. If you want to enjoy this film, you have to meet Jeffery "The Dude" Lebowski on his terms, hang out with him and his bowling buddies and follow them at a their (perhaps somewhat leisurely) pace through this weird and unbelievable tale about nihilism, theft (of a car and, more importantly: a Creedence Clearwater Revival tape), kidnapping, abstract art, porn and - of course - bowling.

The story is actually kind of simple. You see, some no-good German nihilists urinated on The Dude's rug - and this kind of aggression just won't stand against The Dude. With the help of his bowling buddies, he will do everything in his power to get someone to pay for his rug - or possibly get a new one (because that rug really tied the room together). So he embarks on this worthy quest during which he will encounter many wondrous things and fascinating people (even Jesus - who is NOT the messiah but a very naughty man).

With Jeff Bridges in the leading role, the Coen brothers have found the perfect actor to incorporate one of the most iconic characters that has ever been created. But it's not just The Dude that makes this a winner; the whole film is such an inspired folly and simply inventive filmmaking at its finest (the hilarious dream sequence alone is worth the price of admission). The supporting cast is outstanding (J.Turturro, J.Goodman and S.Buscemi among many others), the song choices are perfect and the dialog is the funniest, most quotable in any comedy I've ever seen. This - for me - is without a doubt the film with the highest rewatchability factor of all time. 10 stars out of 10.

Favorite Films: http://www.imdb.com/list/ls054200841/

Lesser-known Masterpieces: http://www.imdb.com/list/ls070242495/

Favorite Low-Budget and B-movies: http://www.imdb.com/list/ls054808375/


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