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The Jerk

R Released Dec 14, 1979 1h 33m Comedy List
82% Tomatometer 44 Reviews 84% Audience Score 50,000+ Ratings
Navin (Steve Martin) believes he was born a poor black child in Mississippi. He is, however, actually white. Upon figuring this out, he heads north to St. Louis to find himself. After landing a job at a gas station, Navin is excited to discover his name printed in the new phone book. This ratification of his existence leads him from one misadventure to another -- as he invents gadgets, dodges bullets, joins the carnival and seeks love in the arms of beautiful Marie (Bernadette Peters). Read More Read Less
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The Jerk

What to Know

Critics Consensus

Crude, crass, and oh so quotable, The Jerk is nothing short of an all-out comedic showcase for Steve Martin.

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Critics Reviews

View All (44) Critics Reviews
Dave Kehr Chicago Reader The verbal and conceptual gags... belong wholly to Martin's own brand of goofiness, and some of them are pretty funny. Mar 14, 2021 Full Review Gary Arnold Washington Post Within ts limitations, The Jerk is a capably produced entertainment, seasoned by deft bit performances from several actors... Apr 24, 2018 Full Review John Skow TIME Magazine Its humor is successful and unsuccessful by turns, and although Comedian Carl Reiner is the director, the instinct here is to give most of both credit and blame to Martin. Feb 2, 2009 Full Review Rene Jordan El Nuevo Herald (Miami) The Jerk is uneven with a capital U. Jan 17, 2024 Full Review Eddie Harrison film-authority.com …doesn’t tick the boxes required of a rounded drama, but it’s hard to complain when so many gags land… Rated: 4/5 Nov 30, 2023 Full Review Brian Eggert Deep Focus Review Every scene offers something funny; every scene subverts expectations. Rated: 3.5/4 Feb 22, 2022 Full Review Read all reviews

Audience Reviews

View All (1000+) audience reviews
David H I was a big fan back in the day, and this movie was an event for me and my friends. I’ve wanted to watch it again for some time now, so I finally did tonight. Some of the humor is a bit dated now, but the duet with Bernadette Peters is as lovely as ever. I believe Martin plays the ukulele live while they sing, but I’m not sure. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 04/27/24 Full Review IAN c B if you love slap stick humour give this a watch very funny scenes and loads of laughs Rated 5 out of 5 stars 02/21/24 Full Review Augustine J The Jerk is a classic American tale of rags to riches and back to rags. It has the feel of something that your grandfather used to love back in the day. Steve Martin is delighting and the comedy is down to a science. There is a score of great comedic moments. It feels like a bridge between old and new comedy and that makes it something special. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 02/02/24 Full Review Daniel M First time watching it and it was a fun movie and Steve Martin was great in it! Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 12/04/23 Full Review Joel H The Jerk is stupid, but it's my kind of stupid. Steve Martin knew that he was creating a silly film for people to laugh at when they're in a silly mood, and I think he succeeded at that. I can quote almost the entire movie and find myself laughing at moments I've seen a dozen times before. Bernadette Peters also shines in her role as Marie, who is the perfect sweet idiot to accompany Navin R. Johnson. It may not please audiences today, and there are moments where the screenplay feels a little cobbled together, but I believe anyone who doesn't find some enjoyment watching this movie is, well, a jerk. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 11/07/23 Full Review JuN G A classic. If you are easily offended, stay away....please. We don't want you to see it anyway. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 08/22/23 Full Review Read all reviews
The Jerk

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Cast & Crew

The Jerk

The Jerk: Official Clip - Navin's Special Purpose The Jerk: Official Clip - Navin's Special Purpose 3:00 The Jerk: Official Clip - He Hates These Cans! The Jerk: Official Clip - He Hates These Cans! 2:49 The Jerk: Official Clip - Navin Beats the Racists The Jerk: Official Clip - Navin Beats the Racists 2:14 The Jerk: Official Clip - The Lord Loves a Workin' Man The Jerk: Official Clip - The Lord Loves a Workin' Man 2:58 The Jerk: Official Clip - Navin's in Print The Jerk: Official Clip - Navin's in Print 1:14 The Jerk: Official Clip - Navin's Birthday The Jerk: Official Clip - Navin's Birthday 2:28 The Jerk: Official Clip - Don't Call That Dog Lifesaver The Jerk: Official Clip - Don't Call That Dog Lifesaver 1:33 The Jerk: Official Clip - The Opti-Grab The Jerk: Official Clip - The Opti-Grab 2:23 The Jerk: Official Clip - Navin Calls the Cops The Jerk: Official Clip - Navin Calls the Cops 2:59 The Jerk: Official Clip - That's All I Need! The Jerk: Official Clip - That's All I Need! 2:58 View more videos
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Movie Info

Synopsis Navin (Steve Martin) believes he was born a poor black child in Mississippi. He is, however, actually white. Upon figuring this out, he heads north to St. Louis to find himself. After landing a job at a gas station, Navin is excited to discover his name printed in the new phone book. This ratification of his existence leads him from one misadventure to another -- as he invents gadgets, dodges bullets, joins the carnival and seeks love in the arms of beautiful Marie (Bernadette Peters).
Director
Carl Reiner
Producer
David V. Picker, William McEuen
Screenwriter
Steve Martin, Carl Gottlieb, Michael Elias
Distributor
MCA/Universal Pictures [us]
Production Co
Aspen Film Society
Rating
R
Genre
Comedy
Original Language
English
Release Date (Theaters)
Dec 14, 1979, Original
Release Date (Streaming)
Jun 15, 2012
Runtime
1h 33m
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