The Jerk


D: Rob Reiner
Universal/Aspen (David V. Picker & William E. McEuen)
US 1979
90 mins
W: Steve Martin, Carl Gottlieb & Michael Elias
DP: Victor J. Kemper
Ed: Bud Molin
Mus: Jack Elliott
Steve Martin (Navin R. Johnson), Bernadette Peters (Marie Kimble Johnson), M. Emmet Walsh (Madman), Bill Macy (Stan Fox), Maurice Evans (Hobart)
The Jerk provided Steve Martin with his first leading role in film and is still amongst his funniest works. He plays a simple man, raised by a poor black family, who ventures into the world to make his millions. He becomes a millionaire through the aid of one of his inventions, but loses it all and returns to his roots.
The jokes are quite hit-and-miss, but the funniest gags and lines of dialogue are quite hilarious. Martin also develops a sweet relationship with Bernadette Peters which would continue in real-life.
Steve Martin in The Jerk
Steve Martin in The Jerk