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Carl Reiner (Where's Poppa?) brought comic Steve Martin to the screen in this mostly funny 1979 movie about a relentlessly stupid but innocent man, whom we get to know from childhood (where it never occurred to him that he was white as he was raised by a family of black sharecroppers) to romance (where he doesn't quite know what to do with Bernadette Peters). Martin is game as the moron, and this is the kind of film with funny moments people still talk about.--Tom Keogh
I AM NOW A STEVE MARTIN FAN Well i haven't really seen too many steve martin movies but after i saw this...i love him!
This is the sort of comedy that can have it's dumb yet funny moments...many of them are laugh out loud!
Its also a sort of movie that will have you talking about it afterwords imitating the funny scenes...
Definatly if you like comedies with bizzare situations It's good! It really is!
It's probably one of my favorite comedies ive ever seen!
Don't watch it alone, its funner to have a buddy to laugh with you!
Great movie...VERY disappointing DVD release... This is one of my favorite comedies. It's not for everyone, as you must understand Martin's unique style of humor. That having been said, the DVD is awful.
The transfer is decent, although could have been cleaned up more. Luckily, it's at least anamorphic widescreen. The sound, while hardly sounding like 5.1, still sounds decent, as i doubt surround sound was on the mind of film makers in 1979. Seriously, it's not Star Wars.
Extras? Fugetaboudit! NO commentary. NO making-of. NO interviews. Just one delected scene, trailer, and a dumb ukelele lesson.
The WORST part! There are scenes missing! Perhaps this version of the film is exactly as it was released in the theaters, but i'm too young to know. However, every time i've seen it on television, there were scenes not present in this release...such as the several different people requesting donations from the rich Navin Johnson. In this, you only get the Mexican priest. Where's the guy who needs new seat covers on his plane? That scene was classic!
You know, this is the SECOND release of this film on DVD, and they call it an "Anniversary Edition." If they're going to give it a name like that, they could at least include the cut of the movie with extra scenes added back in. Maybe the commentary and a simple 15-minute making-of is asking too much, but at least give us the material that's already in the can."I'm in print!" Navin Johnson is an idiot. He was adopted and raised by black sharecroppers in Mississippi. Navin loves his family but he feels he doesn't fit in. His family all has rhythm, but he doesn't. So, on his 18th birthday he leaves to discover the rest of the world. After hitching a few rides he ends up in St. Louis working and living at a gas station. My favorite scene in the entire movie happens there. The new phone books arrive and Navin gets all excited. "This is the kind of spontaneous publicity--your name in print--that makes people. I'm in print! Things are going to start happening to me now." That scene is priceless. While at the gas station Navin invents a device for a man's glasses that later makes Navin a billionaire. But, before that happens he gets shot at by a crazy sharpshooter, gets a job at a traveling carnival, meets a biker chick, breaks up with the biker chick, and fall in love and marry the woman of his dreams, Marie Kimble (Bernadette Peters). Of course, Navin ends up loosing everything and that's why he's a jerk.
THE JERK wasn't Steve Martin's first movie, but it was his first starring role in a feature film and introduced the style of comedy he was doing on the comedy circuit to a broader audience. The movie is filled with all kinds of jokes from witty one-liners, poop jokes, sexual innuendo, slapstick, and a lot of crazy nonsense.
There were moments of THE JERK that I really enjoyed, but there was a lot of stuff that was just plain stupid. Of course, there's a lot of material in the film that no one would be able to get away with today. Steve Martin always was more than just a "Wild and Crazy Guy." He's an intellectual at heart and one can see snippets of that side of Martin in THE JERK. Unfortunately, it's overshadowed by the type of comedy Martin was doing on the comedy circuit that appealed mainly to teenagers and college students. Actually, the reason I ended up liking THE JERK wasn't because of Martin at all, it was because of Bernadette Peters. Peters is one of the finest actresses of all time--she can do serious drama or slapstick comedy and do it better than any other actress. She's a classy lady with a broad charm. Martin is the star of THE JERK, but the film would not have been able to stand if it wasn't for Peters.
THE JERK is a must-see movie for Martin or Peters fans. It's also a movie that people who enjoy lowbrow humor will probably like. The film's largest audience at the time it was released was college students and teenagers. Twenty-five years that core audience probably hasn't changed much.