THEY FIGURED HE WAS A LAZY TIME WASTING SLACKER. THEY WERE RIGHT.
L.A. slacker Jeffrey Lebowski (Jeff Bridges) goes to see a millionaire who has the same name as him to get compensation after an unfortunate encounter with two thugs, but is drawn into a kidnapping case… The Coen Brothers’ attempt to have a little fun with a nonsensical Raymond Chandler-inspired story and 1960s-styled locations in L.A. has become a much-loved cult classic. The criminal case is merely a way to hold together a series of scenes where Bridges and John Goodman in particular shine as the White Russian-guzzling Dude and a hot-tempered, conspiratorial Vietnam vet. Just sit back and enjoy the ride, which includes a goofy bowling-themed dream sequence.
1998-U.S. 117 min. Color. Produced by Ethan Coen. Directed by Joel Coen. Screenplay: Ethan Coen, Joel Coen. Cinematography: Roger Deakins. Cast: Jeff Bridges (Jeffrey “The Dude” Lebowski), John Goodman (Walter Sobchak), Julianne Moore (Maude Lebowski), Steve Buscemi, Peter Stormare, David Huddleston… Philip Seymour Hoffman, Flea, Sam Elliott, John Turturro, David Thewlis, Ben Gazzara, Tara Reid.
Trivia: Goodman’s role was based on John Milius. Followed by a spin-off movie, The Jesus Rolls (2020).
Last word: “To tell you the truth, we’re still tourists in LA. We have lived there for short periods of time, but we’ve always really lived in New York. But the character of the Dude is based on a member of an amateur softball league, but we changed it to bowling because it was more visually compelling, and it’s the kind of sport you can do while you’re drinking and smoking. And it’s also very retro – just as the characters are products with an earlier time, it seems that there’s so much associated with bowling in terms of design, and specifically in LA.” (Joel Coen, Indiewire)