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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
461 ( 88)

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 #171 | 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:

It takes guys as simple as the Dude and Walter to make a story this complicated... and they'd really rather be bowling. 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, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$17,498,804

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$46,189,568
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

Nagelbett, the name of the Autobahn album, means "nail bed" in German. The photograph on the cover shows a bed of nails. 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

Big Associate Editor.... Big Dave Diliberto 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 »

Connections

Featured in WatchMojo: Top 10 Hilarious Movie Speeches! (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In)
Written by Mickey Newbury
Performed by Kenny Rogers & The First Edition
Published by Acuff-Rose Music, Inc. (BMI)
Courtesy of MCA Records
Under license from Universal Music Special Markets
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

My favourite Coen brothers movie and one of the most entertaining and original comedies ever made!
27 December 2002 | by InfofreakSee all my reviews

My favourite Coen brothers movie changes over the years as I watch and rewatch their amazingly original and consistently surprising oeuvre. When I first saw 'The Big Lebowski' on its original release I enjoyed it but thought it was a bit of a slight "fun" movie with less depth than many of their previous works. Now, a few years and several viewing later, I have come to realise just how accomplished a movie it is, and it has become one of my all time favourite movies. Other film makers have attempted to weave together various genres, styles and images in a similarly eclectic, postmodern fashion, but few do it as seamlessly and with such wit as Ethan and Joel Coen. 'The Big Lewboski' is an extremely smart film, but it doesn't shout "look at me! Aren't I clever?". It sucks you in from the get go, and bottom line it is FUNNY, and as it is a comedy that's what counts the most! Everything about the movie is perfect, the script, the direction, set design, costumes, and the wonderful soundtrack (one of the most brilliant ever assembled, it includes lesser known Dylan and Elvis Costello numbers, Creedence classics, and songs from cult favourites like Yma Sumac, Captain Beefheart, Moondog, Esquivel and garage gods The Monks). Plus of course the actors, who are well cast and virtually flawless. Jeff Bridges ('Fat City', 'Starman') IS The Dude, and it's impossible to think of anyone else acting the role. Coen regulars John Goodman, Steve Buscemi, John Turturro, Peter Stomare, and Jon Polito are all on board, as well as Julianne Moore ('Boogie Nights'), David Huddleston ('Capricorn One'), Philip Seymour Hoffman ('Magnolia') and Sam Elliot ('Mask'), even surprise cameos from Ben Gazzara ('The Killing Of A Chinese Bookie') and singer Jimmie Ray Gilmore. I can't fault 'The Big Lebowski', it is one of the most original and entertaining comedies ever made and a genuine modern classic. It's movies like this that keep me watching despite the endless mountain of mindless garbage that Hollywood continually spews out. If only every movie in the box office Top Ten was as inspired and amusing as this one!


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