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Five Easy Pieces (1970)

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A dropout from upper-class America picks up work along the way on oil rigs when his life isn't spent in a squalid succession of bars, motels, and other points of interest.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay) (as Adrien Joyce), (story) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 10 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Elton (as Billy 'Green' Bush)
Fannie Flagg ...
Stoney
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Betty (as Sally Ann Struthers)
Marlena MacGuire ...
Twinky (as Marlena Macguire)
Richard Stahl ...
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Spicer (as John Ryan)
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Storyline

Robert Dupea has given up his promising career as a concert pianist and is now working in oil fields. He lives together with Rayette, who's a waitress in a diner. When Robert hears from his sister that his father isn't well, he drives up to Washington to see him, taking Rayette with him. There he gets confronted with his rich, cultured family that he had left behind. Written by Leon Wolters <wolters@strw.LeidenUniv.nl>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He Rode The Fast Lane On The Road To Nowhere.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

19 February 1971 (Finland)  »

Also Known As:

Mi vida es mi vida  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,600,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$18,099,091, 31 December 1971
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Bob Rafelson: The man going into the elevator at the recording studio. See more »

Goofs

While Tita and Bobby are on the waterfront, talking, Tita is leaning on the tree with no coffee cup and in the next shot she is holding a coffee cup. In the next shot, the cup is gone and she is leaning on the tree again. See more »

Quotes

[Bobby wants plain toast, which isn't on the menu]
Bobby: I'd like an omelet, plain, and a chicken salad sandwich on wheat toast, no mayonnaise, no butter, no lettuce. And a cup of coffee.
Waitress: A #2, chicken sal. sand. Hold the butter, the lettuce, and the mayonnaise, and a cup of coffee. Anything else?
Bobby: Yeah, now all you have to do is hold the chicken, bring me the toast, give me a check for the chicken salad sandwich, and you haven't broken any rules.
Waitress: You want me to hold the chicken, huh?
Bobby: I want you to ...
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Connections

Referenced in Postcards from the Edge (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

Banbury Cross
(uncredited)
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Definitely one of the great American films.
31 January 2005 | by See all my reviews

This movie is most famous for a scene in which Jack Nicholson tells a waitress to hold the chicken salad between her knees so he can get some plain wheat toast, but, in a movie as good as this, that very famous scene may be its least memorable one. After that scene, I hadn't heard anything about what this film was really about, and its depth and power took me completely by surprise. It's a story of a man trapped in his own life, unable to find a place to settle. All the locations at which he has arrived have lead to nothing but disappointment and the realization that there just might not be a life for him. God, how I can sympathize. Just as I was starting to question whether Nicholson was as good an actor as everybody seems to think he is, I've come upon his very best performance. Karen Black plays his girlfriend, a hick who loves him to death. He's not sure if she's good enough for him, or vice versa. Lois Smith, Ralph Waite, and Susan Anspach give good supporting performances. A flat-out masterpiece.


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