Trading Places (1983)

The Duke brothers own a commodities brokerage in Philly, and while they are quite successful at this, they do sometimes argue among themselves.  The topic of their recent argument is that of nature versus nurture; they make a wager and agree to conduct an experiment switching the lives of two people at opposite sides of the social spectrum and observing the results.  After witnessing one of their up-and-comers Louis Winthorpe (Dan Aykroyd) having an altercation with a homeless man named Billy Ray Valentine (Eddie Murphy), who was just trying to help Winthorpe, but he accused him of theft and had him arrested anyway; the Duke brothers have found their test subjects.

The Dukes go on to frame Winthorpe and he loses everything: his job, his home, friends and even his lady.  He is a ruined man in the matter of just a few hours, and now only has the help of the kindly hooker Ophelia (Jamie Lee Curtis) to get by.  Things aren’t all bad for Winthorpe though, as he does get to see Jamie Lee’s boobs, but unfortunately not her penis. Oh well.   Things are really starting to heat up for Valentine, as the Dukes have given him Winthorpe’s old life, and it seems that he has a knack for the commodities business.  Valentine overhears the Dukes talking about their bet and goes to find Winthorpe to try to get even with them, as he doesn’t enjoy people fucking with his life.   With the help of Ophelia and their butler Coleman, the two get the drop on the Dukes by stealing their inside trading information and go on to get rich while bankrupting the Dukes at the same time.

Alex’s Thoughts: Believe it or not, kids, before he started wearing fat suits in every movie Eddie Murphy used to be really funny.  Just about every movie he’s in from the 1980’s is near perfect, this one is no exception.  They same can be said for Dan Aykroyd, and him as a drunk fish-stealing Santa is about as good as it gets for me.  The Duke brothers are also a highlight for me, as well as the scene on the train; I will laugh every time Murphy says ‘Jerky Beef?’.  If you’ve never seen it, please give yourself a great Christmas present and watch it; or if you have seen it give yourself a great Christmas present and watch it again.  Alex Rates This Movie 9/10

Tim’s Thoughts: There is nothing I can say about this that Alex hasn’t, so I will keep this short. Eddie Murphy is in beast mode, and is as he once was, hilarious, and Dan Aykroyd was skinny. This movie is a classic and just as funny now. Tim Rates This Movie 10/10 (This isn’t even Murphy’s funniest 80’s movie)

“I had the most absurd nightmare. I was poor and no one liked me. I lost my job, I lost my house, Penelope hated me and it was all because of this terrible, awful Negro.”

View the IMDB entry for this movie here or add it to your Netflix queue