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I'm Not Rappaport (1996)

I'm Not Rappaport (1996)

Walter MatthauOssie DavisAmy IrvingCraig T. Nelson
Herb Gardner


I'm Not Rappaport (1996) is a English movie. Herb Gardner has directed this movie. Walter Matthau,Ossie Davis,Amy Irving,Craig T. Nelson are the starring of this movie. It was released in 1996. I'm Not Rappaport (1996) is considered one of the best Comedy,Drama movie in India and around the world.

Old Nat Moyer is a talker, a philosopher, and a troublemaker with a fanciful imagination. His companion is Midge Carter, who is half-blind, but still the super of an apartment house. When he is threatened with retirement, Nat battles on his behalf. Nat also takes on his daughter, a drug dealer, and a mugger in this appealing version of a really 'odd couple'.


I'm Not Rappaport (1996) Reviews

  • A sad comedy about aging


    In I'm Not Rappaport, a film by Herb Gardner based on his Tony award winning play, two octogenarians Nat (Walter Matthau) and Midge (Ossie Davis) meet regularly on a park bench in New York's Central Park. The film centers on their relationship as they reminisce about past loves, talk about unions and bosses, old age, and idealism. Nat is a chameleon who assumes the role of spy, lawyer, or consumer advocate, depending on the situation at hand. `I was one person for 80 something years,' he says. `Why not be a hundred for the next five?' Midge, now nearly blind, has worked as a building superintendent for forty years and has had to make compromises just to keep his job. The film takes its title from the old vaudeville joke in which a comic walks across the stage and encounters a straight man with surprise: `Rappaport! What happened to you?' he says. `You used to be a short, fat man and now you're a tall, skinny man.' `I'm not Rappaport,' says the straight man. And this goes on for a couple of minutes until the comic says, `Rappaport, you used to be so well dressed and clean and now you're dressed in filthy old clothes.' `I'm not Rappaport,' says the straight man. `So you changed your name too!' says the comic. Nat's most vivid remembrance is that of a meeting when he was five years old in which a passionate woman, Clara Lemlich (Elina Lowensohn), summoned the Ladies Garment Workers Union to participate in a general strike. He is a follower of radical left-wing causes who focuses his remaining energy and considerable wit on helping others facing injustice. Midge doesn't want any part of social activism but, when the spokesman for the tenant's committee threatens to eliminate his job and apartment dwelling, Nat pretends that he is Midge's lawyer and intervenes, making clear that the issue is a society that underestimates and mistreats its senior citizens. In another sequence, Nat pretends he is a consumer spokesman and brazenly marks down the price of meats and groceries in the local supermarket until he is thrown out on his ear. Things take on a darker tone, however, when a local hood, J.C. (Guermo Diaz) seeks protection money from the elderly. The pair also becomes involved with drug dealer "Cowboy" (Craig T. Nelson) who threatens street artist Laurie (Martha Plimpton) with physical harm if she doesn't pay him the money she owes for drugs. These two episodes are the least effective in the film and do not add much to our understanding of the characters. The most touching sequence, however, is when Nat's schemes are revealed as a desperate attempt to maintain his independence from his daughter Clara (Amy Irving) who wants greater control over his life. While his activities seem harmless, Clara is fearful of her father's visits to the park and wants him to live with her or in a managed care facility. "I'm not going to live in Siberia in Great Neck" with her, he tells her, then makes up a story about a long-forgotten daughter who has invited him to live with her in Israel. While ostensibly I'm Not Rappaport is essentially a two-man show, in reality Matthau grabs the spotlight and never lets go, reducing Davis' role to film fighting off Nat's outlandish talks and schemes and playing straight man for his comic routines. While the film is a comedy, there is sadness in the fact that a once powerful set of beliefs is now reduced to pathetic gestures by sentimental old men. Even when Gardner pays tribute to the Jewish tradition of social action, the Bolshoi Chorus belting out the Internationale seems to mock their passion. For these men, old age does not bring security, status, or emotional fulfillment, only longing for the society that might have been and the men they could have become. For them, there is little left to cling to except a wistful kind of grace.

  • Mathau's acting masterclass


    This is a gentle heart warming film, that to me has a quintessential qualities that make Walter Mathau such a great actor. It is not the comedy in which he excelled at in films like 'The Odd Couple'. It is the way he bullies the script and the camera. This he does well but with not as much aplomb in 'The Sunshine Bys'. To see a film where the script is paramount is wonderful, and to have an actor such as Mathau at the centre of it conducting it with all his mastery skill is a delight to watch. The supporting cast around Mathau equip themselves well. They are not overpowered by his fame or skill. At times it feels as though you are actually there watching events unfold. This is a credit to the director who while keeping it looking like the good film it is, also brings you in as though you are the only person in the world watching the film. Although I have only watched the film on the television, I feel that I would have felt the same effect had I been watching the film in the cinema. This is a rare effect, too many times films can have that distant feel. It is the directors's skill, and the skill and art of the actors that this is never lost. I watched this film, when I had to fill half an hour of time. The result was that I was glued to the seat unable to pull myself away.

  • I wish Walter Matthau were immortal.


    What a great movie! With a great script, a pair of huge actors, and a beautiful scenery, this movie can touch anyone's heart. Don't miss it!

  • A Comedy that Made This Old Lady Smile


    Actually, I not only smiled, I laughed out loud. I'm 70 and did not feel that this movie is sad, as some of the other reviewers have suggested. Those two old guys were making the best out of the time they had left,an encouraging message for us old folks. Unlike so many of today's movies, there was an engaging plot and solid character development. So many of the movies I see these days substitute visual effects,sex scenes,violence, and vulgar language for plot and character development. Also, although it was 130 minutes long,those minutes moved quickly. Three cheers for Walter Matthau! Three cheers for Ossie Davis! Three Cheers for Herb Gardener!

  • Sensitive, poetic, funny, amusing. Excellent actuation from Walter Matthau. Ossie Davis is good too.


    A sensitive approach to the "getting old" problem on the big cities. The main character is a modern version of Dom Quixote, who tries to keep his ideas and principles alive assuming to be imaginary people which had more interesting histories than he had on his own life. The movie is beautiful and amusing. Walter Matthau is splendid.


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