The Big Lebowski

Critics Consensus

Typically stunning visuals and sharp dialogue from the Coen Brothers, brought to life with strong performances from Goodman and Bridges.

83%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 98

94%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 355,627
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Movie Info

The plot of this Raymond Chandler-esque comedy crime caper from the Coen Brothers (Joel Coen and Ethan Coen) pivots around a case of mistaken identity complicated by extortion, double-crosses, deception, embezzlement, sex, pot, and gallons of White Russians (made with fresh cream, please). In 1991, unemployed '60s refugee Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski (Jeff Bridges) grooves into his laid-back Los Angeles lifestyle. One of the laziest men in LA, he enjoys hanging with his bowling buddies, pompous security-store owner Walter Sobchak (John Goodman) and mild-mannered ex-surfer Donny (Steve Buscemi). However, the Dude's life takes an alternate route the afternoon two goons break into his threadbare Venice, California, bungalow, rough him up, and urinate on his living room rug. Why? Because Jackie Treehorn (Ben Gazzara) is owed money by the wife of a certain Jeff Lebowski. However, the goons grabbed the wrong Jeff Lebowski. With the right info, they would have invaded the home of philanthropic Pasadena millionaire Jeffrey Lebowski (David Huddleston). The Dude looks up his wealthy namesake, manages to get a replacement for his rug, and meets the millionaire's sexy young wife Bunny (Tara Reid). Later, Jeffrey ("The Big") Lebowski calls in the Dude to deliver a $1 million ransom for the return of his kidnapped wife. Fine -- except that Walter intrudes and botches the ransom drop. As events unravel, the Dude gets caught up in the schemes of Lebowski's daughter, erotic artist Maude (Julianne Moore), encounters both cops and bad guys, and drifts through an elaborate bowling fantasy sequence titled Gutterballs. The soundtrack includes Bob Dylan, Yma Sumac, Moondog, Captain Beefheart, and the Sons of the Pioneers. ~ Bhob Stewart, Rovi

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Cast

Jeff Bridges
as The Dude
John Goodman
as Walter Sobchak
Julianne Moore
as Maude Lebowski
David Huddleston
as The Big Lebowski
Flea
as Nihilist
Leon Russom
as Malibu Police Chief
Sam Elliott
as The Stranger
Tara Reid
as Bunny Lebowski
John Turturro
as Jesus Quintana
David Thewlis
as Knox Harrington
Ben Gazzara
as Jackie Treehorn
Torsten Voges
as Franz--Nihilist
Philip Moon
as Treehorn Thug
Mark Pellegrino
as Treehorn Thug
Jack Kehler
as Dude's Landlord
James G. Hoosier
as Quintana's Partner
Terrance Burton
as Maude's Thug
Richard Gant
as Older Cop
Dom Irrera
as Tony the Chauffeur
Gerard L'Heureux
as Lebowski's Chauffeur
Lu Elrod
as Coffee Shop Waitress
Michael Gomez
as Auto Circus Cop
Peter Siragusa
as Gary the Bartender
Mary Bugin
as Arthur Digby Sellers
Jesse Flanagan
as Little Larry Sellers
Luis Colina
as Corvette Owner
Ajgie Kirkland
as Cab Driver
Jon Polito
as Private Snoop
Aimee Mann
as Nihilist Woman
Jennifer Lamb
as Pancake Waitress
Warren David Keith
as Funeral Director
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News & Interviews for The Big Lebowski

Critic Reviews for The Big Lebowski

All Critics (98) | Top Critics (19)

  • One of a kind.

    Sep 20, 2018 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…
  • I'll just say this: The Big Lebowksi is an excellent movie - and damn funny.

    Apr 2, 2018 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…
  • The Big Lebowski is a noir send-up, so call it L.A. Inconsequential.

    Jan 8, 2018 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

    Mike Clark

    USA Today
    Top Critic
  • [The Coens] rummaged through political and personal history for the underpinnings of this Los Angeles caper, from 1998, sending up, with rueful astonishment, the American way of war.

    Oct 12, 2015 | Full Review…
  • Adds up to considerably less than the sum of its often scintillating parts.

    Nov 7, 2007

    Todd McCarthy

    Variety
    Top Critic
  • The result is a lot of laughs and a feeling of awe toward the craftsmanship involved. I doubt that there'll be anything else like it the rest of this year.

    Apr 27, 2007 | Full Review…

    Andrew Sarris

    Observer
    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Big Lebowski

  • Sep 09, 2016
    Visually tasteful and fluid chemistry and performances for a Coen Brothers' cult film. The Big Lebowski is a simple story that requires no over-analyzing to delve into its narrative and concept. It's effective, humorous and overall a wacky classic. 4/5
    Eugene B Super Reviewer
  • Feb 05, 2016
    One of the best comedies ever and a personal favourite of mine. The Big Lebowski is by far one of the Coen brothers' best film and a film you should definitely check out. If you don't at least like this film... Yeah, well, that's just, like, your opinion, man.
    Mr N Super Reviewer
  • Sep 13, 2015
    Absolutely ridiculous and strange in the best way possible.
    Kameron W Super Reviewer
  • Apr 24, 2015
    I just don't like it.
    Maymay A Super Reviewer

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