Episode 176: My Dinner With Andre (1981)

[Deep, impressive movie trailer voice]: Now.  In “That Sure Was 1981.” Two men.  One restaurant.  One dinner.  Two hours of pulse-pounding, mind-shattering . . . conversation! They’re breaking all the rules . . . of cinema! When everyone else said “things have to happen in a movie,” these two men dared to say no! Wallace Shawn IS Wallace Shawn! Andre Gregory IS Andre Gregory! In “My Dinner With Andre: Please Pass the MURDER!” [note: secondary title may only exist strictly in this writer’s imagination]. Yes, this is the movie so many have referenced, mocked, parodied and so much more.  There’s no way this movie should work; it’s literally just two guys sitting in a restaurant discussing a long series of largely disconnected subjects from Scottish alternative learning institutions to Japanese monks to the nature of human intimacy to electric blankets.  This shouldn’t work.  And yet it consistently shows up on many “Best Independent Films of All Time Lists.” Roger Ebert loved this movie; he said it was the best film of 1981.  Does it hold up? Do we end up loving it as much as the Blessed Ebert did? Give a listen and find out! Oh, and speaking of ol’ Roger . . .

Poll question: how much, if at all, do the reviews of “the critics” influence your desire to see any particular movie? And in what circumstances?

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3 thoughts on “Episode 176: My Dinner With Andre (1981)”

  1. I saw this when it was released and it was the movie every one I knew in Boston was talking about. I wrote about it not long ago on my movie blog. I did like it a lot, I have the script as well. Reading the script is pretty much like watching the movie! You guys did an amazing job in this one. If you didn’t see it at the time it must be even stranger to understand why anyone would make such a thing but your conversation I think proves how thought provoking it turned out to be even today. Andre is a art douche if you ask me and I liked the pointing out of the him having the privilege and obviously the money to do whatever fool thing he wanted and then brag about how enlightened it made him.

    I read reviews to get a feel for what other people are thinking about a movie but I don’t really take any of it to heart as I often have my own experience in the cinema but it can help me decide to spent 15 dollars or wait and watch it online. I would say never listen to anything 2 guys and a horse tell you about a film! Not that that is happening anywhere!

    1. This was a show I was really worried about. It’s such an odd film, heard of but not often watched. Would anyone be interested in a show about it 41 years on? So, thanks so much for your comments, they mean a lot. My sister liked the show, too. I think you’re right; Andre IS an Art Douche. So easy to make those pronouncements from atop your ivory tower, but there’s little for the common person to grasp.

      Thanks for your poll question answer, too…I think. To be fair, Bumpy never expresses opinions, just BumpyPux. 😀

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