Pennies From Heaven

Closed Capationed Starring: Steve Martin & Bernadette Peters Director: Herbert Ross  Rated: R: Restricted
Pennies From Heaven
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Rating 4.7
81 ratings
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DVD Features:

  • Scene-Specific Commentary from Film Critic Peter Rainer
  • Pennies From Heaven: 20th-Anniversary Cast & Crew Reunion
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Subtitles: English, French & Spanish
  • Rated: R
  • Closed captioning available
  • Run Time: 1 hours, 48 minutes
  • Video: Color
  • Released:
  • Originally Released: 1981
  • Label: Warner Home Video
  • Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
  • Packaging: Keep Case
  • Aspect Ratio: Widescreen - 1.85
  • Audio:
    • Mono - English

Performers, Cast and Crew:

Starring &
Performer: , &
Directed by
Edited by
Screenwriting by
Composition by &
Director of Photography:

Entertainment Reviews:

Variety - 12/09/1981
"...[The] film is a virtuoso piece of studio craftsmanship..."
New York Times - 12/11/1981
"...An eccentric show....[It] will become something of a cause among people who like to go to movies at midnight."
Entertainment Weekly - 08/06/2004
"Christopher Walken's 'Let's Misbehave' tap dance is masterful..."

Description by

"I want to live in a world where the songs come true," Arthur Parker says. In that world, bank tellers would eagerly hand out sacks of Depression-era dough to him, every cloud would have a silver lining and Arthur's loveless marriage to Joan would give way to boop-boop-a-doop bliss with passionate Eileen.

Steve Martin, Bernadette Peters and Jessica Harper form the triangle of this razzle-dazzler in which lip-synched 1930s songs contrast with characters' lives. Herbert Ross directs Dennis Potter's movie adaptation of his landmark TV miniseries, filming on sets that recreate Depression-era artwork and bringing a savvy touch to vibrant musical numbers. See Christopher Walken strip to "Let's Misbehave." Fall under the spell of a Martin/Peters homage to Astaire and Rogers. Every penny is on the screen. And each looks like a million.

Product Description:

Dennis Potter's offbeat tale comes to life in this inventive film adaptation. PENNIES FROM HEAVEN is a warm and joltingly bizarre musical fantasy about a drifter who sells sheet music (Steve Martin) and the naive schoolteacher (Bernadette Peters) he seduces. In depression-era Chicago, the lovers sing and dance their way through the bleak city streets. Steve Martin and Bernadette Peters give stunning musical performances.

Plot Synopsis:

Herbert Ross's PENNIES FROM HEAVEN is a lavish adaptation of the BBC series of the same name; it's a contemplative avant-garde musical in which drab everyday surroundings magically become movie sets and everyday speech suddenly turns into song. Steve Martin stars as Arthur, who sells sheet music--and the dreams promised in their lyrics--in 1930s depression-era Chicago. He's not always the most pleasant of fellows: He cheats on his wife, lies to his lovers, and seduces an innocent schoolteacher, Eileen (Bernadette Peters). But his spirit still has a sweetness and innocence--the sweetness of the Tin Pan Alley tunes he hawks and the innocence of the fantasy-filled Hollywood musicals he sees. When Arthur and Eileen set out on a series of misadventures, their bleak world turns to song and dance in a series of lavish Busby Berkeley-style musical numbers. The film features stunningly versatile performances by Steve Martin and Bernadette Peters.

Plot Keywords:

Black Comedy | Essential Cinema | Fantasy | Poverty | Recommended | Satire | Showbiz | Surreal | Theatrical Release

Production Notes:

  • Bob Hoskins played Arthur in the BBC version.
  • Christopher Walken's striptease number took two months to rehearse.

Movie Lovers' Ratings & Reviews:

Customer Rating: Rating 4.7
Based on 81 ratings.
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Product Info:

  • UPC: 012569592421
  • Shipping Weight: 0.25/lbs (approx)
  • International Shipping: 1 item