6.2/10
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62 user 14 critic

Renaissance Man (1994)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama | 3 June 1994 (USA)
A failed businessman is hired by the army to teach a group of underachieving recruits in order to help them pass basic training.

Director:

Penny Marshall

Writer:

Jim Burnstein

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Danny DeVito ... Bill Rago
Gregory Hines ... Sergeant Cass
James Remar ... Captain Tom Murdoch
Ed Begley Jr. ... Jack Markin
Lillo Brancato ... Pvt. Donnie Benitez (as Lillo Brancato Jr.)
Stacey Dash ... Pvt. Miranda Myers
Kadeem Hardison ... Pvt. Jamaal Montgomery
Richard T. Jones ... Pvt. Jackson Leroy
Khalil Kain ... Pvt. Roosevelt Nathaniel Hobbs
Peter Simmons Peter Simmons ... Pvt. Brian Davis, Jr.
Gregory Sporleder ... Pvt. Melvin (as Greg Sporleder)
Mark Wahlberg ... Pvt. Tommy Lee Haywood
Cliff Robertson ... Colonel James
Ben Wright Ben Wright ... Private Oswald
Ann Cusack ... Bill's Secretary
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Storyline

A down-on-his-luck businessman desperately takes the only job offered - a teacher in the U.S. Army. His mission: keep a ragtag bunch of underachieving misfits from flunking out of basic training! Be on alert as this unlikely new teacher and his underdog class unexpectedly inspire each other to be all they can be! Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

There's only one man big enough to take them on... See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 June 1994 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

By the Book See more »

Filming Locations:

Detroit, Michigan, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$40,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,557,590, 5 June 1994

Gross USA:

$24,332,324

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$24,332,324
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Screenwriter Jim Burnstein and his family can be seen behind Danny DeVito, when Bill Rago and his daughter are at the Tigers game. To the right of Mr. Burnstein, are his son Gabe, daughter Devon, and his wife. Usually, Mr. Burnstein and Gabe are the only ones visible on-screen. See more »

Goofs

The army would never allow recruits to leave base, especially without a superior like a drill sergeant, during basic training before graduation. See more »

Quotes

Pvt. Roosevelt Nathaniel Hobbs: [voice over, while Bill is reading a letter from him] Dear Mr. Rago, Thanks for all your letters. And I don't know what you and Captain Murdoch wrote to the warden but it sure worked. Because I might be getting out of here soon. Just wanted you to know, I'm reading Othello. Imagine that. Mr. Shakespeare writing about a black man way back then, and a soldier too. Prison librarian says I'm the first to check out Shakespeare in 16 years. She asked me if I was interested in signing up for some ...
See more »

Connections

References Gunsmoke (1955) See more »

Soundtracks

HAMLET RAP
Performed by The Double D's
See more »

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User Reviews

If you're old enough, this movie is brilliant
14 July 2003 | by Otter-17See all my reviews

Unless life has kicked you in the nuts as an adult a few times, then you may not appreciate the thought and point that has gone into this little masterpiece.

This movie is about how a self serving man (typical adman in NYC) working in a self serving profession (advertising), learns to be unselfish by serving others. He does this first because he has to (get a job because the Government is stopping your welfare), but after a bit of experience, he does it because he wants to.

Yep, it's that simple, but makes some very true and adult points. Devito's character isn't seen to have kids, isn't seen to have a wife, or anything happy in his life at all except an expensive apartment, but the expensive apartment doesn't apparently give him any contentment either.

I for one would be interested in seeing a sequel because i would like to see if the main character reverted to type if he got a job in advertising in say, Nunchuck South Dakota, or did he end up as teacher in a prestigious East Coast finishing school. Yay, let's all throw our hats in the air!


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