6.2/10
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Wonder Wheel (2017)

PG-13 | | Drama | 15 December 2017 (USA)
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On Coney Island in the 1950s, a lifeguard tells the story of a middle-aged carousel operator, his beleaguered wife, and the visitor who turns their lives upside-down.

Director:

Woody Allen

Writer:

Woody Allen
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1,576 ( 258)
4 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Justin Timberlake ... Mickey
Juno Temple ... Carolina
Robert C. Kirk ... Boardwalk Vendor
Kate Winslet ... Ginny
Jim Belushi ... Humpty
Jack Gore ... Richie
Tommy Nohilly ... Humpty's Friend
Tony Sirico ... Angelo
Steve Schirripa ... Nick (as Steven R. Schirripa)
John Doumanian John Doumanian ... Ruby's Bartender
Tom Guiry ... Flirtatious Man at Ruby's (as Thomas Guiry)
Max Casella ... Fishing Buddy
Gregory Dann ... Fishing Buddy
Bobby Slayton ... Fishing Buddy
Michael Zegarski ... Fishing Buddy
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Storyline

In the hustle and bustle of 1950s Coney Island, where the buzzing crowd comes and goes trudging slowly over the wooden boardwalks, silent stories of the everyday toilers who give life to the attraction unfold. Somewhere in a clam bar, there's the sad waitress Ginny, a one-time actress and now a suffering wife who's been given a second chance by the side of the well-intentioned but uncouth carousel operator, Humpty. On the other hand, there's Humpty's 26-year-old estranged daughter, Carolina, who left the familial nest and a preordained future seeking adventure as a mobster's wife; only to return home with her wings broken, begging for forgiveness. And from the lifeguard's high tower, where all is in plain sight, the young and charming lifesaver and hopeful playwright, Mickey, is the inadvertent but potent catalyst that binds everything together. Shattered dreams, reckless love and betrayal, all under the bright lights of Coney Island. Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for thematic content including some sexuality, language and smoking | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 December 2017 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La rueda de la maravilla See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$1,403,237, 28 January 2018
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | SDDS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (ACES)

Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Woody Allen first noticed Jim Belushi in the 1986 film About Last Night, and expressed a desire to work with him. See more »

Goofs

The bathroom on the boardwalk was modernized a few years back. This is not how it would have looked at the time period of this movie. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Mickey: [narrating] Coney Island, 1950's. The beach, the boardwalk. Once a luminous jewel, but growing relentlessly seedier as the tides roll in and out. Summers I work here on Bay 7. Comes the fall, I'm a student at New York University going for my Master's in European drama. I'm Mickey Rubin. Poetic by nature. I harbor dreams of being a writer. A writer of truly great plays, so I can one day surprise everyone and turn out a profound masterpiece.
Mickey: [to the camera] Anyhow. Let me get to the ...
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Soundtracks

Let Me Call You Sweetheart
Composed by Leo Friedman & Beth Slater Whitson
Performed by Paul Eakins
Courtesy of Carlisle Music Co. LLC
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User Reviews

 
Eugene O'Neill Anyone?
9 December 2017 | by bobliptonSee all my reviews

These days, even the college-educated don't recognize the classics. Spike Lee can film LYSISTRATA, but so long as he moves it to Chicago and calls it CHI-RAQ, no one makes the connection. Instead, they complain that he is slandering Chicago. Well, no doubt, that's what the municipal authorities said about Aristophanes at the time. In this movie, Juno Temple flees from her mobster husband to take refuge with her alcoholic father, James Belushi, and step-mother, Kate Winslett and her pyromaniac son from her first marriage; they've got marginal jobs. The story is told from the viewpoint of Justin Timberlake, who spent the war in the navy. Now he's a lifeguard, studying to be a playwright, conducting an affair with Miss Winslett and falling in love with Miss Temple.

Woody Allen's script makes several references to Eugene O'Neill, and were they living on Nantucket and complaining about how their lives were ruined because the father had made too much money playing the Count of Monte Cristo to attend to his art, everyone would recognize this as LONG DAY'S JOURNEY INTO NIGHT. However, Mr. Allen has set it in the neighborhood he grew up in and made the fact that they're so broke they're living in a bankrupt freak show house an important plot point, so this will either be overlooked or seen as blasphemy.

This is one of Mr. Allen's serious movies. I join the general population in not being as fond of those as the ones that make me laugh out loud. Yet I take a good deal of pleasure in his recreation of 1950s Coney Island (although his "Greenwich Village hovel" is remarkably clean for the era) and his clear-eyed vision of a world, now vanished, that existed more surely than the one I live in now sometimes seems to.


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