Taking Care of Business

Taking Care of Business

Director: Arthur Hiller

Cast: Arthur Hiller, Jim Belushi, Charles Grodin, Anne de Salvo

     
 

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James Belushi and Charles Grodin team up for this variation on the Prince and the Pauper. Belushi plays Jimmy Dworski, a convicted car thief, serving time in a minimum security prison. But when Jimmy wins a pair of tickets to the World Series from a radio call-in show, he can't resist walking out of jail, particularly when the warden won't even let the inmatesSee more details below

Overview

James Belushi and Charles Grodin team up for this variation on the Prince and the Pauper. Belushi plays Jimmy Dworski, a convicted car thief, serving time in a minimum security prison. But when Jimmy wins a pair of tickets to the World Series from a radio call-in show, he can't resist walking out of jail, particularly when the warden won't even let the inmates watch the series on television. Grodin plays rich workaholic Spencer Barnes, who, when his wife walks out on him right before a long-planned vacation, leaves his datebook in an airport telephone booth. Happening upon Spencer's datebook is Jimmy, who simply intends to return the datebook to Spencer for a 1,000-dollar reward. But when he finds the datebook contains his credit cards, Jimmy assumes Spencer's identity, living the good life and dating the boss's daughter, while making his way to Malibu to return the property to Spencer.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Nathan Southern
This 1990 Hollywood formula comedy is a pleasant surprise. Arthur Hiller's role-reversal picture will never be accused of originality; it reiterates the ancient Prince and Pauper setup recycled from scores of other screen comedies, such as John Landis's 1983 Trading Places. But what it does, it does impeccably well. Hiller one-ups the Landis film and other similar efforts by retaining a gleeful congeniality throughout and resisting crassness and ugliness. Some critics responded favorably to Trading Places by comparing it to Frank Capra, but the overrated Landis film turns terribly dour and ugly. The breeziness, warmth, and sheer affability of this effort come much closer in spirit to the old Hollywood masterworks of social satire, such as My Man Godfrey; in fact, it's as if Hiller and co-scripters Jill Mazursky (the producer's daughter) and Jeff Abrams cross-pollinated Capra and Ernst Lubitsch. Only a Hollywood comedy could present a 37-time car thief and prison escapee (played by Jim Belushi) who is such a swell guy, and work out the mechanics of the plot so slickly that he slides right through the shaggy-dog plot without being detected as an imposter and reincarcerated. The film bears about as much relation to the real world as a Playboy pictorial. Half of it is just eye candy (such as Belushi's explorations of the Sharper Image-laden Malibu beach home where he crashes), and the ending terribly desperate. But there are enormous pleasures to be had here; we have fun watching the apish Belushi careen his way through Charles Grodin's business meetings, like an unmanned bulldozer, destroying everything (and everyone) in his path, as he salutes Grodin's snooty female client on the size of her cleavage, and refers to uber-powerful Japanese business mogul Sakamoto (Mako) as "Big Sak." Moreover, Grodin proves himself the master of the slow burn, as he gets pummeled, soiled, shoved into a dumpster, and eventually forced to wear ladies' pants and walk ten miles in the driving rain; the indignities he suffers are truly hilarious, and he turns in a finely modulated comic performance. Hiller and company grace this much underrated film with a gifted supporting cast, including Hector Elizondo, Anne de Salvo, Veronica Hamel, and the radiant Loryn Locklin.

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Product Details

Release Date:
04/02/2002
UPC:
0786936119817
Original Release:
1990
Rating:
R
Source:
Walt Disney Video
Region Code:
1
Sound:
[Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround]
Time:
1:48:00

Special Features

Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound; Full screen (1.33:1)

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Jim Belushi Jimmy Dworski
Charles Grodin Spencer Barnes
Anne de Salvo Debbie
Loryn Locklin Jewel
Stephen Elliott Walter Bentley
Veronica Hamel Elizabeth Barnes
Hector Elizondo Warden
Mako Sakamoto
Gates McFadden Diane
Bert Blyleven Himself
Baldo Dal Ponte National Anthem Singer
John Marshall Jones Actor
Tee Rodgers Stadium Guard
John de Lancie Ted
Thom Sharp Mike
Ken Foree J.B.
J.J. LeBradford
Andre Rosey Brown Heavy G
Terrence E. McNally Hamilton
Lenny Hicks Mediator
Joe Bratcher Mediator
Burke Byrnes Prison Guard
Tony Auer Prison Guard
Marte Boyle Slout Brenda
John P. Menese Chauffeur
Stanley de Santis Car Rental Man
Tommy Morgan Gang Member
Buddy Daniels Gang Member
Chris Barnes Luggage Boy
Jill Johnson Tennis Court Girl
Tom Nolan Mr. Wright
Marjorie Bransfeld Tennis Club Receptionist
Selma Archerd Woman in Pro Shop
Joe Lerer Ira Breen
Howie Guma Sakamoto's Assistant
Elisabeth Barrett Diane's Assistant
Tom Taglang Waiter
Michele Harrell High Quality Receptionist
Stu Nahan Radio Reporter
Andrew Amador Prison Reporter
Sandra Eng Prison Reporter
Louisa Abernathy Guard
Michael McNab Main Gate Guard
Michael Kinney Malibu Jail Guard
Leslie Suzan Malibu Jail Woman
Janet Julian Woman on Plane
Dan Kern Snooty Man
David Ruprecht Yuppie Dad
Whitby Hertford Yuppie Son
Joe Torre Himself
Mark Grace Himself
Hank Robinson Umpire
Michael Blue Beach House Cop
Ron Chenier Beach House Cop
Darlene J. Hall Jeep Driver
Kristen Amber Citron Twin

Technical Credits
Arthur Hiller Director
Jeffrey Abrams Screenwriter
Richard Arrington Makeup
Charles William Breen Set Decoration/Design
Stewart Copeland Score Composer
Joe Dunne Stunts
Duncan Henderson Co-producer
Jon Hutman Production Designer
Lewis Songwriter
Marilyn Matthews Costumes/Costume Designer
Jill Mazursky Screenwriter
Paul Mazursky Executive Producer
Jack Norworth Songwriter
Richard Ratliff Special Effects
William H. Reynolds Editor
Linda Spheeris Set Decoration/Design
Lynn Stalmaster Casting
Geoffrey Taylor Producer
Ablert von Tilzer Songwriter
David M. Walsh Cinematographer

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Scene Index

Side #1 --
0. Chapter Selection
1. Opening Titles/World Series Tickets [9:28]
2. Canceled Plans [9:45]
3. Filofax [10:55]
4. A Very Important Meeting [10:28]
5. The Real Spencer Barnes [13:39]
6. Honesty Is the Key to Success [:58]
7. Dinner Date [6:39]
8. Who Are You? [9:43]
9. The World Series [7:49]
10. On the Run [9:15]
11. Breaking Back In [4:44]
12. A Great Team/End Credits [9:22]

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