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The Bellboy

Released Jul 20, 1960 1h 12m Comedy List
73% Tomatometer 11 Reviews 68% Audience Score 2,500+ Ratings
A mute bellboy (Jerry Lewis) working at the luxurious Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach constantly causes problems with his clumsy mistakes. Read More Read Less
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Critics Reviews

View All (11) Critics Reviews
Eric Henderson Slant Magazine The Bellboy is nearly silent, in what could easily be taken as a nod toward French comedy titan Jacques Tati. Rated: 4/4 Oct 13, 2004 Full Review Ian Kane Epoch Times It’s great to see Lewis, arguably at the height of his incredible stardom, playing a humble bellboy, and it’s quite apparent that he’s channeling parts of his own life... Rated: 3.5/5 Dec 26, 2022 Full Review Steve Crum Dispatch-Tribune Newspapers For my meager money, Jerry Lewis' best & one of funniest all-time comedies. Rated: 5/5 Aug 25, 2006 Full Review Dennis Schwartz Dennis Schwartz Movie Reviews Jerry at his rawest and most creative. Rated: A Jan 15, 2006 Full Review Emanuel Levy EmanuelLevy.Com Rated: 3/5 Jul 2, 2005 Full Review Philip Martin Arkansas Democrat-Gazette Rated: 2/5 Dec 26, 2004 Full Review Read all reviews

Audience Reviews

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Audience Member While it is appreciated that Jerry Lewis' The Bellboy was not only pioneering the use of a video assist system but also payed a homage to iconic silent film stars. At times, the films gags were pretty humorous. Other than that, The Bellboy has nothing to offer but bad qualities such as bad editing, bad writing, and no plot (even though it was acknowledged). But the film also acknowledged it did have a moral. That moral was "You'll never know the next guy's story...unless you ask". Rated 2 out of 5 stars 02/18/23 Full Review Audience Member Jerry Lewis in his directorial debut and it is a masterpiece. Gorgeous, scattered, brilliant, abstract and funny, each scene is so beautifully composed you'll understand why the French understood him. This is the MoMA of comedy. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 02/17/23 Full Review Audience Member Jerry Lewis proves yet again that he has no aptitude for comedy. This woeful string of unfunny skits set in a gigantic Miami hotel tries so hard to emulate the great screen clowns - even tiresomely introducing a Stan Laurel lookalike - and the more it tries, the more it fails, because Lewis labours every gag and indulges himself throughout. Painful stuff. Rated 2 out of 5 stars 01/27/23 Full Review Audience Member The best comedy movie ever made! Rated 5 out of 5 stars 02/26/23 Full Review Audience Member Jerry Lewis was already a huge star when this film came out, but this film marked his first outing as a director and it's an assured first film. Like most Lewis directed comedies, the film is often series of vignette comic set pieces. Jerry's "Kid" character is a Miami hotel bellboy who has lots of various tasks that mostly go comically awry, whether it's answering phones, having to fill an enormous ballroom with chairs, or conducting an imaginary orchestra, it's all quite funny. There's no real story and this is even openly stated by the film's fiction producer at the film's outset. An interesting film history note, Jerry is credited with creating the video-assist technique on this film, where he put monitors on the set that allowed him to immediately see what was filmed live on set, which is now a standard practice on films. Overall, the film is nothing brilliant, but it's quite enjoyable and a solid directorial debut for Lewis. Milton Berle and Walter Winchell have cameo appearances and future longtime Lewis collaborator Bill Richardson appears in the film as Stan Laurel. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 01/31/23 Full Review Audience Member I really liked this film. I found the slap stick comedy really impressive. I think all of it was very well done. The acting by all the actors was all great. Sometimes it was the other actors who helped tell the story and make Jerry Lewis work best because a lot of it relied on the actors since Jerry Lewis often would not say anything. What stood out to me about this film was the writing of the comedy was really smart. The camera cuts stood out to me about this film. I like how they were able to make the camera cuts go from one time of day to another with a camera flash or have no crowd to a complete crowd, or go from Jerry Lewis go into the elevator to coming out of the elevator as a different character. The cuts almost seem seamless and often I don't see when the cuts are done. They also did a great job of not making Jerry Lewis character of Stanley speak only whistle, or use facial expressions in a way that was reasonable to believe. I was impressed by the film. At no point did I feel like the comedy did not work. I was impressed that Jerry Lewis did this as his first directing debut, that he wrote the story for this film, and produced the film. I felt like this was a cohesive story. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 01/25/23 Full Review Read all reviews
The Bellboy

My Rating


Cast & Crew

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Movie Info

Synopsis A mute bellboy (Jerry Lewis) working at the luxurious Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach constantly causes problems with his clumsy mistakes.
Jerry Lewis
Jerry Lewis
Jerry Lewis
Production Co
Jerry Lewis Productions, Paramount Pictures
Original Language
Release Date (Theaters)
Jul 20, 1960, Original
Release Date (Streaming)
Aug 10, 2016
1h 12m
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