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Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (1988)

tomatometer

88

Average Rating: 6.9/10
Reviews Counted: 32
Fresh: 28 | Rotten: 4

A buoyant, clever update of the conman flick Bedtime Story, with plenty of comedic jousting resulting from a winning chemistry between Michael Caine and Steve Martin.

80

Average Rating: 6.5/10
Critic Reviews: 5
Fresh: 4 | Rotten: 1

A buoyant, clever update of the conman flick Bedtime Story, with plenty of comedic jousting resulting from a winning chemistry between Michael Caine and Steve Martin.

audience

84

liked it
Average Rating: 3.4/5
User Ratings: 47,798

My Rating

Movie Info

Dirty Rotten Scoundrels is a remake of the 1964 film farce Bedtime Story. Steve Martin and Michael Caine take over the roles originally played by Marlon Brando and David Niven: two international con artists, plying their trade on gullible wealthy women up and down the Riviera. Martin and Caine vie over the honor of fleecing ingenuous heiress Glenne Headly (in a role originated by Shirley Jones). ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

PG,

Comedy

Paul Henning, Dale Launer

Dec 17, 1997

MGM Home Entertainment

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All Critics (32) | Top Critics (5) | Fresh (28) | Rotten (4) | DVD (18)

A wonderfully crafted, absolutely charming remake of the 1964 film Bedtime Story.

December 31, 2008 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

There's little enough to keep you occupied as Caine and Martin go through their comic set pieces in workaday fashion while the film moves mechanically from one contrived situation to the next.

January 26, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out | Comments (4)
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Their comic methods are different, but from their first unequal encounter until the very last in a series of twist endings, Mr. Caine and Mr. Martin work together with an exuberant ease that's a joy to watch.

May 20, 2003 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Martin, the most eloquent of physical clowns -- the Baryshnikov of comedy -- is at his most inspired here. He parodies feelings, attitudes, states of mind that one would think were exempt from it, and his caricature of dapper suavity is killingly precise.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The chemistry between Martin and Caine is fun, and Headly provides a resilient foil as a woman who looks like a pushover but somehow never seems to topple.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Martin and Caine scam women. Not for young kids.

January 1, 2011 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

An amusing comedy whose strengths and weaknesses both stem from the broad treatment of the material.

February 2, 2009 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

The surprise ending can be spotted a mile off, but it's still enormous fun getting there.

February 2, 2009 Full Review Source: Film4
Film4

Near classic comedy of con artists on the loose with Steve Martin and Michael Caine playing off each other.

December 23, 2006
Dispatch-Tribune Newspapers

Hilarious.

October 6, 2005
Fantastica Daily

Hilarious but uneven.

June 5, 2004
Shadows on the Wall

Worthy conmen comedy with a great cast.

June 8, 2003
Needcoffee.com

A great scam comedy with Martin and Caine continually trying to top each other. Hilarious from beginning to end.

March 27, 2003
Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)

Shoulda been funnier than it is.

January 9, 2003
New Times

Caine and Martin are criminally cool together. Truly funny stuff.

July 26, 2002
eFilmCritic.com

A classic comedy!

February 20, 2002 Full Review Source: JoBlo's Movie Emporium
JoBlo's Movie Emporium

For fans of the 'old' Steve Martin, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels is an interesting case study in how an actor can evolve in ability, but devolve in likeability, over time.

February 12, 2002 Full Review Source: Apollo Guide
Apollo Guide

There is a slightly perfunctory air in the way the story unreels as though it's all been done before. Nevertheless, Caine and Martin make a great double act.

August 28, 2001 Full Review Source: BBC.com
BBC.com

A very funny and entertaining film that should be recommended as an example of something that is rather absent in Hollywood these days -- stylish and well-crafted comedy.

August 24, 2001 Full Review
rec.arts.movies.reviews

It deals in genuinely funny situations, not just funny personalities.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: rec.arts.movies.reviews
rec.arts.movies.reviews

Audience Reviews for Dirty Rotten Scoundrels

The life (and livelihood) of a well established continental con artist (Michael Caine) on the Riviera is disrupted when clumsy competition appears in the person of unkempt small-timer (Steve Martin) in Frank Oz' light comedy that's worth more than simply a smile. Martin's "Rupert" character is particularly pleasing. Glenne Headly also charms.
July 30, 2014
ApeneckFletcher

Super Reviewer

Michael and Steve are hilarious as con men trying to out do each other, but they meet their match in the jackel. Very funny and interesting plots.
March 3, 2013
thmtsang
Candy Rose

Super Reviewer

Steve Martin and Michael Caine make quite the comedic pair, in this delightfully entertaining 80's gem, about two rivalring con artists - one the street hustler type and the other of a more sophisticated school - who upon realising that their "hunting ground" isn't big enough for the both of them, agrees on a settlement: The first one to extract $50.000 from a young female target wins, while the other has to leave town. And what a location at that! The picturesque French riviera, in which the story runs its course, is a showcase of true beauty; sometimes stunning the eyes so much that you get lost in the divine settings. It makes you wanna buy yourself a house there some day, and just sit on the terrace and take in the ocean air. And if that's not enough to get you to watch it, the two virtuosic leads certainly will. Funnyman Steve Martin is in his absolute prime, with a very vibrant performance that is nothing short of hilarious. And Michael Caine, while perhaps not as funny, infuses every moment on screen with charm, suavity and his wonderful British wit. A must-see if you're a fan of either and a gold-encrusted humor show, that is abundantly rich in laughs, glamour and alluring visuals. So whatever you do, don't let it slip under your radar like it almost did for me. Because this movie is simply too good to be missed!
May 11, 2012
CloudStrife84
Mike S

Super Reviewer

Martin and Caine are an interesting duo for a comedy, and Frank Oz directs. This movie is fun and very funny, I enjoyed it.
February 26, 2011
ajv2688

Super Reviewer

    1. Freddy Benson: Go stand over there.
    2. Janet Colgate: Here?
    3. Freddy Benson: No, over by the bed. I want to see how far I can go.
    – Submitted by George P (9 months ago)
    1. Freddy Benson: I know somebody here! I met him on a train! His name... is... his name is... James. No. His name is... James Josephson. Lor. No, no, no. James Lawrence. LAWRENCE... Lawrence. Lawrence Fells. Lawrence Feings. Forest Lorenston. Low. Lars. LARS. Lawrence. Lawrence. Luch. Lawrence. Tuh. His name is James Jesenthon. Lawrence Fell. Lawrence Jesterton. LAWRENCE
    – Submitted by Kelly E (19 months ago)
    1. Freddy Benson: I've got culture coming out of my ass.
    – Submitted by Kelly E (19 months ago)
    1. Lawrence Jamieson: Freddy, as a younger man, I was a sculptor, a painter, and a musician. There was just one problem: I wasn't very good. As a matter of fact, I was dreadful. I finally came to the frustrating conclusion that I had taste and style, but not talent. I knew my limitations. We all have our limitations, Freddy. Fortunately, I discovered that taste and style were commodities that people desired. Freddy, what I am saying is: know your limitations. You are a moron.
    – Submitted by Kelly E (19 months ago)
    1. Lawrence Jamieson: Freddy, as a younger man, I was a sculptor, a painter, and a musician. There was just one problem: I wasn't very good. As a matter of fact, I was dreadful. I finally came to the frustrating conclusion that I had taste and style, but not talent. I knew my limitations. We all have our limitations, Freddy. Fortunately, I discovered that taste and style were commodities that people desired. Freddy, what I am saying is: know your limitations. You are a moron.
    – Submitted by Kelly E (19 months ago)
    1. Lawrence Jamieson: Ruprecht, do you want the genital cuff?
    – Submitted by Kelly E (19 months ago)
View all quotes (11)

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