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Editorial Reviews

The film that launched successful careers for Kevin Bacon, Ellen Barkin, Paul Reiser, Mickey Rourke and more! It's a lively, poignant tale of friends trying to recapture their lost innocence in 1959 Baltimore.

Special Features

  • Making Of Documentary With Director Barry Levinson And The Cast
  • Introduction by Barry Levinson

Product Details

  • Actors: Steve Guttenberg, Michael Tucker, Daniel Stern, Ellen Barkin, Kevin Bacon
  • Directors: Barry Levinson
  • Writers: Barry Levinson
  • Producers: Mark Johnson, Jerry Weintraub
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Letterboxed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: French, English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: September 7, 2010
  • Run Time: 110 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (122 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004RE27
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,868 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Diner" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Great dialogue, great story, great setting.
Cindy T. Rizzo
And I like them even more as this cuts to the stereotype of being a guy but the movie itself is more of a thinking man's guy flick.
Tim "Mac" McCloud
He makes us care about these characters no matter how likable or unlikable their behavior may be.
Kenneth M. Gelwasser

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

51 of 52 people found the following review helpful By hiscapital on June 11, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
Whether you're from Baltimore or from a suburb outside of New York as I am; whether you grew up in the 50s or the 70s as I did, this film will make you feel right at home. Very few movies can take the most mundane, the most ridiculously trivial moments and conversation from real life and make them interesting never mind howlingly funny. Diner succeeds in this and more. We know these guys: their sophomoric antics, their idiosyncrasies, their loyalties to best friends and their uneasy transition into the adult responsibilities of money, work, and marriage.
The scenes at the diner are deceptively complex in that Levinson has several characters speaking at the same time and yet we can follow the dialogue with no difficulty. The conversation, physical reactions and interplay between characters is so natural as to seem completely unrehearsed and unedited. It's almost as if we are at the next table eavesdropping on the fun.
The cast in Diner was rightfully recognized as a superb group of players and everyone from Daniel Stern to Kevin Bacon to Ellen Barkin has done prolific work since then.
I heartily recommend you watch Diner with your best friends and then go out for a meal afterwards. Whether you choose to order french fries and gravy is up to you.
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33 of 34 people found the following review helpful By Kevin P. Westmoreland on December 31, 2000
Format: DVD
I first saw Diner in the early eighties and it became one of my favorites. It captures the same feel as another coming of age movie, American Graffiti. The stories occur only three years apart, with Diner capturing more of the fifties feel and being the grittier of the two. While both of the films are excellent and understated, I can probably handle Diner on a more regular basis.
It struck a chord with me because a group of 5-6 friends and I spent each Friday and Saturday night during the early eighties sitting around a table in an all night cafe doing what the guys in Diner do - talking about women and the world in general.
The characters are normal guys, but at the same time they hold surprises. Boogie, played by Mickey Rourke, works in a beauty salon AND goes to law school at night. And this is in 1959! Fenwick, Kevin Bacon's character, appears to be a delinquent with a drinking problem (which he is), but reveals an intelligent side. Daniel Stern's character doesn't understand his wife at all, but has an encyclopedic knowledge of music history.
The entire starring cast went on to bigger (but not always better - where is that understated Mickey Rourke now?) things but the film contained firsts for several people involved. This was Barry Levinson's directorial debut, Ellen Barkin's film debut and a breakout role for Mickey Rourke.
The DVD is a pleasant surprise. It contains an anamorphic widescreen video transfer which is surprisingly free of nicks and scratches, although not perfect. The widescreen presentation is a revelation when compared to the pan and scan VHS version. City shots show much more and the group scenes flow much more smoothly without the cutting back and forth between characters.
Another surprise is the Dolby Digital 5.1 surround track.
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41 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Rocco Dormarunno on June 7, 2004
Format: VHS Tape
DINER has been receiving a lot of unkind remarks in recent years, and much of it is undeserved. Time is really what has been unkind. In 1982, after years of hippie doldrums, disco ho-hum, and punk self-destruction, Barry Levinson reached back to a different era which seemed like a simpler one. But he did so without a nostalgic eye. He presented five young men at a point in life when hard decisions have to be made. To compound this, each of the five young men are facing critical issues at this critical time. (Notice I say five men, not six. Modell [Paul Reiser] doesn't have a plot line. He's there for comic effect mostly.)
Boogie (Micky Rourke), his gambling problems aside, struggles to keep his dreams but must learn to accept the responsibilities of life. The intellectual but alcohol-plagued Fenwick (Kevin Bacon) must face-down his crusty, aloof family once and for all. Shreevie (Daniel Stern) must learn to translate his love for love songs for love for his wife before his marriage completely evaporates. Mama's boy (with a twisted mama), Eddie, (Steve Guttenburg) who has no real excuse for treating his fiancee so badly, is the most desperate in need of growing up.
To me, Billy (Timothy Daly) has the most poignant of all problems. He's willing to face up to his responsibility; he's willing to do the right thing. In one scene, where he decks the last opposing player of a baseball team that had ganged up on him, he essentially has put his boyhood behind him. What's standing in his way is the woman carrying his child but won't marry him. (She has good reason, by the way, for being reluctant.)
But comedy is watching other people struggle with their problems, after all. To me, the more believeable the problems (and they are believeable) the more effective the comedy.
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34 of 38 people found the following review helpful By sweetmolly on December 4, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
Couldn't help but note that all these fine reviews appear to be written by males. Lest anyone get the impression Diner is strictly a "guy" film, I'm here to enlarge the audience base. It's a no-plot hilarious film with enough bitter/poignant moments to lift it beyond comedy. The acting is superb. I can't say enough about Barry Levinson's firm grasp on the entire picture. The actors, though now well known, were neophytes at the time. Levinson took them beyond themselves. Some of them have never approached the perfection again of their performanances in this film. I think particularly of Steve Guttenberg and Mickey Rourke. I became an instant Kevin Bacon fan first for crass reasons (be still my beating heart) and secondly for his excellent realization of his role. They are bored, they are restless and no, they are not "men." They are between adolescence and adulthood, a very unpleasant place to be. We laugh, but they didn't--not then.
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