The Big Lebowski is a 1998 American neo-noir crime comedy film, written, produced, and directed by Joel and Ethan Coen. It stars Jeff Bridges as Jeffrey “The Dude” Lebowski, a Los Angeles slacker and avid bowler. After he is assaulted as a result of mistaken identity, The Dude learns of a millionaire also named Jeffrey Lebowski who was the intended victim. When the millionaire Lebowski’s trophy wife is kidnapped, he commissions The Dude to deliver the ransom to secure her release. The plan goes awry when the Dude’s friend Walter Sobchak (John Goodman) schemes to keep the full ransom. Julianne Moore and Steve Buscemi also star, with David Huddleston, John Turturro, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Sam Elliott and Tara Reid appearing in supporting roles.
It’s easy to see why this is a popular film. Jeff Daniels is great as the stoner chilled out duke. John Goodman rocks as the aggressive friend. It taps into many of the myths Americans have about themselves, from the car culture to the western end that Sam Elliot provides.