#123movies #fmovies #putlocker #gomovies #solarmovie #soap2day Watch Full Movie Online Free – Interview-style biography of controversial and pioneering stand-up comedian Lenny Bruce. The film traces Bruce from his beginnings as a Catskills comic to his later underground popularity based on his anti-establishment politics and his scatological humor.
Plot: The story of acerbic 1960s comic Lenny Bruce, whose groundbreaking, no-holds-barred style and social commentary was often deemed by the Establisment as too obscene for the public.
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|7.6/10 Votes: 14,851|
|7.3 Votes: 152 Popularity: 9.594|
Hoffman is stunning
To be honest I don’t think the rest of the film quite deserves 8 stars, but Dustin Hoffman’s performance as Lenny Bruce is so extraordinary that it lifts the movie up to that rating.
Made in a fairly familiar quasi-documentary style, ‘Lenny’ begins with ‘present day’ (i.e. 1974) interviews with the surviving characters from Lenny’s life, cut with flashbacks to his 1950’s beginnings as a ‘traditional’ comic, and ‘late’ live performances in his post-drug-bust days. As the film progresses and the narrative catches up with the interviews, the gaps between these segments ‘close’. Clever use is made of some of Lenny’s material, cutting from keywords or phrases in his bits, to events in his life with inspired or correlated to them.
All the same there is something a little dry and disappointing in the film’s structure: almost as if it could have used a more conventional, linear narrative, like Milos Forman’s tribute to Andy Kauffman, ‘Man on the Moon’ would use to such great effect 25 years later.
Ironically though, such a structure might have deprived of us of seeing more of Hoffman doing Lenny’s bits ‘live’ on stage – and for me these were the highlights, which I wish had lasted longer, rather than flashing back to some past event after 30 seconds. As a big Lenny Bruce fan, I can only say that Hoffman’s portrayal is almost supernatural. It’s like he’s channeling the guy. He has his mannerisms and improvisational style down perfectly. You would swear you were seeing these improvisations for the first time if you hadn’t heard them already. In fact, Hoffman possibly even improves on Lenny’s delivery in one small respect. Lenny had a penchant for the ‘conversation’ that would erupt in the middle of one of his bits, between two or more characters. Hoffman probably puts a bit more distinction between the characters than Lenny often did (quite often they would all just sound like Lenny, which was part of the magic, but never mind.) Over 30 years on, it’s quite amazing to me that this film has become a relative obscurity in Dustin Hoffman’s filmography. Frankly, though Hoffman has blown me away on various occasions, I don’t ever remember being more blown away than this. And if you were to pick easy people to imitate, I doubt Lenny Bruce on stage would be high on many people’s lists.
The film as a whole is good, but to witness Hoffman channeling Bruce, it’s a must-see.
Cinema always used to be a bit behind other media in terms of freedom from “moral” censorship. This stems from archaic and elitist notions that, as it presents its ideas visually and reaches a wider and supposedly less cultured audience that cinema is a more corrupting medium than books or theatre. So while the great comic Lenny Bruce was tussling with obscenity laws in the 50s and early 60s, it wasn’t until the era following his death that his story would be deemed safe for the screen.
Luckily this was also a good era for honest, balanced and very human portrayals of controversial figures. This version of his life, adapted by Julian Barry from his own play, flits between different views on Bruce. There are two framing narratives, the first a series of staged interviews giving the perspectives of those who knew and loved him, the second clips of a bearded Bruce doing his stand-up in the later years of his life. Between these we see fleeting episodes from the comic’s life, told in an implicit style with scant dialogue. The interviews elucidate and expand these events, but even more cleverly the stand-up excerpts comment upon them. The stand-up is the substitute for an interview with Bruce, and the implication is that it was only during his shows that he was really able to be express himself fully.
This was the first non-musical feature of choreographer-turned-director Bob Fosse. He doesn’t adapt his style too much, with the same punchy, rhythmic and very precise approach he used in his musicals. Fosse’s shots are typically very simple, the Bruce Surtees cinematography often shrouding all but the faces in darkness, or keeping at least keeping the backgrounds fairly plain or out-of-focus. Camera movement is minimal. The storytelling is all in the edit for Fosse. A great example of this is in Valerie Perrine’s stripping scene near the beginning. Fosse gives her camera coverage much as he might have given Liza Minnelli in Cabaret, but he’s also throwing in shots of the audience and the band, getting reactions and revealing the variety of punters that the show is getting. He takes the complete opposite approach towards the end with the scene of a drugged-up Lenny stumbling through his act, with a long-take from a high angle making the comic a pathetic little figure among the stage paraphernalia. After the close camera and choppy edits of the rest of the movie, the change is all the more stark.
Dustin Hoffman, then still a relatively young actor, takes on the difficult task of playing a real figure only recently deceased. I’ve seen recordings of the real Lenny Bruce. Hoffman doesn’t try to copy him slavishly, but he captures a way Bruce could have been, and is I feel completely true to the spirit of the man. He also brilliantly handles the transition from young to old Lenny. It’s not just the beard that distinguishes those flash-forwards of later Bruce shows; Hoffman has more presence and confidence about him. Perrine is really good too, naturally bringing her previous work experience into the stripping scene, but then showing a delicate realism in the more dramatic moments.
For an audience today, the taboos Bruce breaks seem fairly tame. The stuff he gets busted for now can be, and regularly is, said on national TV. But the movie shows us not a shocking tale of boundaries smashed, but an intimate portrait of the man who smashes them. We see Bruce as the complex human we can recognise and the witty fighter we can root for. And it is this touching humanity which gives Lenny a compelling quality outside of its time.
Original Language en
Runtime 1 hr 51 min (111 min)
Genre Biography, Drama
Director Bob Fosse
Writer Julian Barry (play), Julian Barry (screenplay)
Actors Dustin Hoffman, Valerie Perrine, Jan Miner, Stanley Beck
Awards Nominated for 6 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 10 nominations.
Production Company Marvin Worth Productions [us]
Sound Mix Mono
Aspect Ratio 1.85 : 1
Laboratory DeLuxe (prints)
Film Length 3,065 m (Sweden)
Negative Format 35 mm
Cinematographic Process Spherical
Printed Film Format 35 mm