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The Freshman (1990)

tomatometer

93

Average Rating: 7.5/10
Reviews Counted: 45
Fresh: 42 | Rotten: 3

Buoyed by the charm of Matthew Broderick in the title role and Marlon Brando as a caricature of his Godfather persona, The Freshman benefits from solid casting, a clever premise, and sweet humor.

88

Average Rating: 7.6/10
Critic Reviews: 16
Fresh: 14 | Rotten: 2

Buoyed by the charm of Matthew Broderick in the title role and Marlon Brando as a caricature of his Godfather persona, The Freshman benefits from solid casting, a clever premise, and sweet humor.

audience

61

liked it
Average Rating: 3.1/5
User Ratings: 11,509

My Rating

Movie Info

In this farcical comedy, Matthew Broderick plays Clark Kellogg, an aspiring director who arrives in New York City to attend film school. However, moments after he arrives in the city, he's robbed by Victor Ray (Bruno Kirby), leaving him no money for the $700 in books required by his instructor, Arthur Fleeber (Paul Benedict). A few days later, Clark runs into Victor and demands his money back, but Victor has already lost it (on a horse race in which he wasn't entirely sure the animal he bet on

PG,

Drama, Comedy

Jun 30, 1998

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

Watch It Now

Cast

Latest News on The Freshman

August 16, 2006:
Character Actor Bruno Kirby, Dead at 57
You'd immediately recognize the face (and the voice) from movies like "City Slickers,"...

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All Critics (45) | Top Critics (16) | Fresh (42) | Rotten (3) | DVD (5)

Andrew Bergman's The Freshman is a charmed comedy, the kind of seemingly effortless movie in which everything falls neatly into place, as if ordained by nature.

August 1, 2013 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Brando does a wonderful sendup of Corleone that manages to play off the Don's entrenched place in pop culture. But The Freshman is no copycat comedy.

August 1, 2013 Full Review Source: Philadelphia Inquirer
Philadelphia Inquirer
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Though writer-director Andrew Bergman sets up potentially funny situations, the payoffs aren't nearly as clever as they need to be. Many situations don't pay off at all.

August 1, 2013 Full Review Source: Orlando Sentinel
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Just when you've had it with the mistimed scenes and the clunky direction, writer-director Andrew Bergman comes through with an inspired piece of lunacy.

August 1, 2013 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's the kind of material that could easily fly apart into silliness, yet Brando and Broderick help the director to keep it anchored in a certain emotional reality, which is always the source of the richest comedy.

August 1, 2013 Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Marlon Brando returns to the movies with one of his funniest performances as, in essence, Don Corleone with a screw loose.

August 1, 2013 Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The Freshman is like no other comedy. Just when you think you've figured it out, it ambles away.

August 1, 2013 Full Review Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel
South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Here's a chance to see a mellow Marlon Brando in his greatest comedy performance.

August 1, 2013 Full Review Source: Radio Times
Radio Times

The Freshman has dead spots, certainly, but makes up for them with its moments of inspired craziness.

August 1, 2013 Full Review Source: Philadelphia Daily News
Philadelphia Daily News

In the case of this inspired comedy, the plot is a dignified bonkers combination of The Graduate, The Sting, The Godfather and The Producers.

August 1, 2013 Full Review Source: People Magazine
People Magazine

It's fun to watch Marlon Brando parody one of his most justly celebrated roles.

August 1, 2013 Full Review Source: Christian Science Monitor
Christian Science Monitor

An underrated hidden treasure.

September 8, 2010 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

It's a nice premise, film informing life, and Bergman's film succeeds thanks to its sprightly pace, modest but fully realised ambition and the ever affable Broderick.

September 8, 2010 Full Review Source: Film4
Film4

Great.

January 25, 2008 Full Review Source: PopMatters
PopMatters

Broderick is his usual charming self, and there are occasional moments of inspired whimsy or absurdity.

October 13, 2007 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

A truly genial and delightful comedy.

October 10, 2007 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Audience Reviews for The Freshman

A clever plot that is only enhanced due to Brando's satiric presence, 'The Freshman' is an enjoyable film whose jokes may fall flat most of the time, but still exudes a charm that makes it worthy of our time.
April 13, 2013
Kase Vollebregt

Super Reviewer

Brando spoofs his Godfather role ... that's the draw in this light fah-gettahboutit comedy that has a small town yoot (Broderick, serviceable) visit da Big Apple for the first time --- as a film student at NYU. And what film are they studying? Try ta guess, or y'sleep wit' duh fishes, yo! Bruno Kirby is good as our tour guide, or else ... what could happen wrong? You could refuse dis offer but it wouldn't look good if you did, capeesh?
September 15, 2011
ApeneckFletcher

Super Reviewer

This is a zany adventure comedy with movie legend Marlon Brando and 80s teen cutie Matthew Broderick. Being a fan of both of them, I really enjoyed this movie. It's nothing new, but it is entertaining.
April 14, 2011
ajv2688

Super Reviewer

one of the truly brilliant comedies of the 1990's, and already a film being grossly overlooked. ive never been a big broderick fan, but this may be his best movie, and brando's ability to spoof his own creation is admirable. the humor is fresh and the story delightful. a must see comedy.
February 10, 2010
sanjurosamurai
danny d

Super Reviewer

    1. Clark Kellogg: I'm getting too old for this nonsense.
    – Submitted by Adam O (18 months ago)
    1. Victor Ray: [hands Clark a fake passport] Is that a piece of work or what?
    2. Clark Kellogg: What is this? 'Rodolfo Lasparri'?
    – Submitted by Adam O (18 months ago)
    1. Clark Kellogg: You promise?
    2. Carmone Sabatini: Every word I say, by definition, is a promise.
    – Submitted by Adam O (18 months ago)
    1. Clark Kellogg: It's a crime.
    2. Carmone Sabatini: Now you're speaking in generalities.
    – Submitted by Adam O (18 months ago)
    1. Clark Kellogg: But it's an endangered species!
    2. Carmone Sabatini: Not any more. It's in New Jersey, it's fine.
    – Submitted by Adam O (18 months ago)
    1. Clark Kellogg: [narrating] There's a kind of freedom in being completely screwed... because you know things can't get any worse.
    – Submitted by Adam O (18 months ago)
View all quotes (14)

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