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Barton Fink (1991)

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A renowned New York playwright is enticed to California to write for the movies and discovers the hellish truth of Hollywood.

Directors:

Joel Coen, Ethan Coen (uncredited)

Writers:

Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
Reviews
Popularity
4,526 ( 504)

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

Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 17 wins & 26 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Turturro ... Barton Fink
John Goodman ... Charlie Meadows
Judy Davis ... Audrey Taylor
Michael Lerner ... Jack Lipnick
John Mahoney ... W.P. Mayhew
Tony Shalhoub ... Ben Geisler
Jon Polito ... Lou Breeze
Steve Buscemi ... Chet
David Warrilow David Warrilow ... Garland Stanford
Richard Portnow ... Detective Mastrionotti
Christopher Murney ... Detective Deutsch
I.M. Hobson I.M. Hobson ... Derek
Meagen Fay ... Poppy Carnahan (as Megan Faye)
Lance Davis Lance Davis ... Richard St. Claire
Harry Bugin Harry Bugin ... Pete
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Storyline

In 1941, New York intellectual playwright Barton Fink comes to Hollywood to write a Wallace Beery wrestling picture. Staying in the eerie Hotel Earle, Barton develops severe writer's block. His neighbor, jovial insurance salesman Charlie Meadows, tries to help, but Barton continues to struggle as a bizarre sequence of events distracts him even further from his task. Written by Scott Renshaw <as.idc@forsythe.stanford.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Between Heaven and Hell There's Always Hollywood! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and some scenes of violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 August 1991 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Barton Fink - È successo a Hollywood See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$9,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$268,561, 25 August 1991

Gross USA:

$6,153,939

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$6,153,939
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Bruce Campbell revealed in his autobiography that he unsuccessfully auditioned for a cameo role. See more »

Goofs

In one of the final shots of Colonel Lipnick in uniform, the bottom two rows of his ribbons have come lose and are hanging from one side. In the last shot, his ribbons have been fixed. See more »

Quotes

Barton Fink: W.P. Mayhew? The writer?
W.P. Mayhew: Just Bill, please.
Barton Fink: Bill! You're the finest novelist of our time.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The 20th Century Fox logo appears over silence; the "fanfare" is not played. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Sympathy (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Old Black Joe
(uncredited)
aka "Poor Old Joe"
Written by Stephen Foster
Sung by Mayhew when he is drunk
See more »

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User Reviews

Not fantastic, but pretty good
9 February 1999 | by Jarvis-6See all my reviews

One thing is for certain: Barton Fink is a very original movie. The film is shot in an appealing fashion, with excellent lighting and set design. The acting is very good, especially John Goodman's performance. The story is simple, provocative, and layered with meaning that runs much further than skin-deep. The movie is not wrapped up neatly in the end and spoon fed to the audience, which can prove to be both compelling and frustrating. Many questions are left unanswered in the end. The Coen brothers' supernatural touch adds another dimension to the film. This is a subtle film for the most part, but it seems to me as if there are too many shots of Barton staring off into space, and not enough of the "good stuff." A worthwhile film, nonetheless.


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