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As Good as It Gets (1997)

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A single mother and waitress, a misanthropic author, and a gay artist form an unlikely friendship after the artist is assaulted in a robbery.

Director:

James L. Brooks

Writers:

Mark Andrus (story), Mark Andrus (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
463 ( 146)
Won 2 Oscars. Another 36 wins & 53 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jack Nicholson ... Melvin Udall
Helen Hunt ... Carol Connelly
Greg Kinnear ... Simon Bishop
Cuba Gooding Jr. ... Frank Sachs
Skeet Ulrich ... Vincent
Shirley Knight ... Beverly
Yeardley Smith ... Jackie
Lupe Ontiveros ... Nora
Jill the Dog ... Verdell (as Jill)
Timer the Dog Timer the Dog ... Supporting Dog (as Timer)
Billy the Dog Billy the Dog ... Supporting Dog (as Billy)
Bibi Osterwald ... Neighbor Woman
Ross Bleckner Ross Bleckner ... Carl
Bernadette Balagtas ... Caterer
Jaffe Cohen ... Partygoer
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Storyline

New York City. Melvin Udall, a cranky, bigoted, obsessive-compulsive writer, finds his life turned upside down when neighboring gay artist Simon is hospitalized and his dog is entrusted to Melvin. In addition, Carol, the only waitress who will tolerate him, must leave work to care for her sick son, making it impossible for Melvin to eat breakfast. Written by Jon Reeves <jreeves@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A comedy from the heart that goes for the throat. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 on appeal for strong language, thematic elements, nudity and a beating | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 December 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Old Friends See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$12,606,928, 28 December 1997, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$148,478,011

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$314,178,011
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

SDDS | Dolby

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The sketches of the dog in the background were drawn by New York City's artist Joan Semmel. See more »

Goofs

When Carol asks Melvin to take her and Spencer to the hospital in his cab, Melvin shouts at a group of school children. One girl runs to the front with her mouth wide open. She is clearly instructed by the school the teacher to do this. See more »

Quotes

Carol Connelly: Well, now your furry little underbelly is exposed, tell me why you really wanted me on this trip?
See more »

Crazy Credits

In cast credits dogs are credited as: Verdell - Jill Supporting dogs - Timer, Billy See more »


Soundtracks

BALTIMORE
Written by Lover Patterson, Lewis Lebish, and Walter Coleman
Performed by The Drifters
Courtesy of Atlantic Recording Corp.
By Arrangement with Warner Special Products
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Way to go, Jack!
19 December 1998 | by Star-47See all my reviews

Jack Nicholson is simply phenomenal. Yes, I will give credit where it is due and congratulate Greg Kinnear, Helen Hunt, and Cuba Gooding, Jr, on their fine performances. They are talented. But I am mesmorized by Jack's intricate facial expressions and inflection each time I see this movie.

Critics panned this movie for being totally unbelievable. I would have to agree-why would Carol fall for Melvin? Why does Melvin change his ways after so many years of acid-tongued insults? I don't know. I know people who disliked the film because Melvin was such a you-know-what. Personally, I love the evil retorts he hurls at any innocent bystander. Maybe it's a sick pleasure, but Nicholson's delivery is perfect and I couldn't help but laugh as he takes on everyone.


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