The One and Only is a standout comedy film from 1978, charting an amusing and inspiring course through the eccentric world of professional wrestling. Starring Henry Winkler, Kim Darby, and Gene Saks, this Paramount Pictures film is directed by Carl Reiner. This movie portrays a vibrant time frame draped in the comedic undertones and a touching love story.
Set in the post-World War II New York City, the film introduces us to the exuberant character, Andy Schmidt (Henry Winkler), an aspiring actor with an unmatched confidence, charisma, and a restless spirit. He's a charismatic young man brimming with ambition to make it big in the world of show business. Winkler evokes a character filled with flamboyance and passionate gusto, drawing the viewers into his endearing journey. However, reality is far more unwelcoming than the dreams that carry him. Despite his blind faith in his talent, he is a threatre student who isn't seen as particularly gifted by his peers or teachers.
On the funny side of the story, Andy's overconfidence and eccentricities make it hard for him to grab hold of any promising opportunities, turning him into a comedic figure. It becomes a recurrent theme seeing Andy's grand dreams always superseded by his hilarious mislanded attempts to achieve them. A series of odd jobs and unsuccessful auditions make every day a new adventure, with Andy at the center of the whirlwind.
In the midst of this rocky journey, Andy meets and marries Mary Crawford (Kim Darby), a sweet, brave, and supportive woman who believes in Andy's dreams even when he falters. In her, Andy finds a loving life partner, somebody who stands by his side no matter what. Kim Darby truly shines in this role, becoming the heart and soul of the movie.
As his dreams of conquering Broadway start to fade, the plot takes an unexpected turn, leading Andy Schmidt toward a new destiny in the raw and roaring world of 1950s professional wrestling. He accepts an offer to become a wrestling artist and, under the tutelage of an experienced coach (Gene Saks), he becomes "The One and Only," with a new stage name and a striking personality to headline the wrestling scene. This twist shows an intriguing interplay between theatre and wrestling, looking upon both as forms of performance art, demanding charisma, physical prowess, and the ability to tell a captivating story.
Carl Reiner brings in his brilliant understanding of character-driven jokes and physical humor to weave a script that delivers an entertaining spectacle. He artfully combines moments of laugher, excitement, disappointment, and triumph to create an uplifting narrative. The fine performances by Winkler, Darby, and Saks, coupled with Reiner's comedic storytelling and a compelling narrative, stands out to give this film its unique color and energy.
But the story doesn't cease to surprise as it transforms once more. Amidst the nightly feats of strength and spectacle in the wrestling ring, Andy Schmidt must also understand and live the true meaning of love, fatherhood, and what it really means to be "The One and Only."
The movie seamlessly blends timeless humor with the adventure of an underdog and the heartwarming story of a man who discovers the virtue of humility and the importance of love and family. Meticulously scripted and masterfully directed, The One and Only will leave you with a sense of warmth, a few life lessons, perhaps, and, without doubt, a hearty good laugh.
With its signature 1950s charm, a lovable hero, a delightful cast of characters, an outstanding narrative arc, comic moments, and a whole lot of heart, The One and Only is a delightful watch, presenting a unique perspective on the glory of pursuing dreams and the inevitable ups and downs of life.
The One and Only is a Comedy movie released in 1978. It has a runtime of 98 min.. Critics and viewers have rated it moderate reviews, with an IMDb score of 5.8..How to Watch The One and Only
Where can I stream The One and Only movie online? The One and Only is available to watch and stream, buy on demand, download at Apple TV, Amazon, Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent The One and Only for a limited time or purchase the movie for downloading.