5.6/10
2,484
15 user 9 critic

The Main Event (1979)

A bankrupt entrepreneur attempts to recoup some of her losses by getting a washed-out boxer she picked up as a tax loss back into the ring - an idea her protégé isn't fond of.

Director:

Howard Zieff
Reviews

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Prime Video

ON DISC
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 4 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A housewife tries to finance her cab-driving husband's education.

Director: Peter Yates
Stars: Barbra Streisand, Michael Sarrazin, Estelle Parsons
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A stuffy author enters into an explosive relationship with his neighbor, a foul-mouthed, freewheeling prostitute.

Director: Herbert Ross
Stars: Barbra Streisand, George Segal, Robert Klein
Nuts (1987)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A high-class call girl accused of murder fights for the right to stand trial rather than be declared mentally incompetent.

Director: Martin Ritt
Stars: Barbra Streisand, Richard Dreyfuss, Maureen Stapleton
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A bored housewife takes refuge in a fantasy world.

Director: Irvin Kershner
Stars: Barbra Streisand, David Selby, Ariane Heller
Funny Lady (1975)
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Story of singer Fanny Brice's stormy relationship with showman Billy Rose.

Director: Herbert Ross
Stars: Barbra Streisand, James Caan, Omar Sharif
Five and Ten (1931)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

After her businessman father moves her family from Kansas City to New York, a woman falls in love with an engaged man.

Director: Robert Z. Leonard
Stars: Marion Davies, Leslie Howard, Richard Bennett
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A drummer plants doubts into the mind of a bandleader about his wife's faithfulness in an attempt to take over the band himself.

Director: Jean-Claude Tramont
Stars: Gene Hackman, Barbra Streisand, Diane Ladd
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Young Mary feels like a prisoner in the New York apartments of her step-father John Bussard but everything changes when her heartless guardian dies in an accident. Mary is left a fortune ... See full synopsis »

Director: Allan Dwan
Stars: Marion Davies, Norman Kerry, Matt Moore
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Casey and Babe are sisters who work in a department store and each year the store puts on a show. As expected, things are going wrong with every act until Casey comes out to help Babe with ... See full summary »

Director: Sam Wood
Stars: Rosetta Duncan, Vivian Duncan, Lawrence Gray
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The accidental mix-up of four identical plaid overnight bags leads to a series of increasingly wild and wacky situations.

Director: Peter Bogdanovich
Stars: Barbra Streisand, Ryan O'Neal, Madeline Kahn
Operator 13 (1934)
Certificate: Passed Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Union spy Gail Loveless impersonates a black maid in the early days of the Civil War, but complications arise when she falls in love with a Confederate officer.

Director: Richard Boleslawski
Stars: Marion Davies, Gary Cooper, Jean Parker
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

An Irish girl comes to America disguised as a boy to claim a fortune left to her brother who has died.

Director: Sidney Olcott
Stars: Marion Davies, Stephen Carr, J.M. Kerrigan
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Barbra Streisand ... Hillary Kramer
Ryan O'Neal ... Eddie 'Kid Natural' Scanlon
Paul Sand ... David
Whitman Mayo ... Percy
Patti D'Arbanville ... Donna
Chu Chu Malave ... Luis
Richard Lawson ... Hector Mantilla
James Gregory ... Gough
Richard Altman Richard Altman ... Tour Guide
Seth Banks Seth Banks ... Newsman
Lindsay Bloom ... Girl In Bed
Earl Boen ... Nose - Kline
Roger Bowen ... Owner Sinthia Cosmetics
Badja Djola ... Heavyweight In Gym (as Badja Medu Djola)
Rory Calhoun Rory Calhoun ... Fighter In Kid's Camp
Edit

Storyline

Hillary Kramer, successful Perfume magnate awakes one morning to find that her accountant has robbed her blind and left for South America. Going through all of her remaining assets she finds a boxer, purchased as a tax write off. She decides to take Kid Natural, (Eddie Scanlon) who is much more at home giving driving lessons, into the ring and use him as her key to riches. Eddie thinks this will only get him killed and resists. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A Glove Story

Genres:

Comedy | Romance | Sport

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 June 1979 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Pelea de fondo See more »

Edit

Box Office

Gross USA:

$42,800,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The name of the boxing joint was the "Third St. Gym". It's slogan read "Thru these portals pass the world's greatest fighters". See more »

Goofs

When Hillary and Kid are fighting in the ring at the end of the film, Kid calls Hillary, "Judy". Judy was Barbra Streisand's character's name in the last film that she and Ryan O'Neal did together, What's Up, Doc?. See more »

Quotes

Hillary Kramer: You have to tell me exactly what I do after the Kid wins. Do I just jump into the ring? Or do I apologize to the loser? Or maybe I just wave to the fans?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in ALF: Wanted: Dead or Alive (1989) See more »

Soundtracks

Big Girls Don't Cry
(uncredited)
Written by Bob Crewe and Bob Gaudio
Performed by Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons
Produced by Bob Gaudio
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Screwball romantic comedy, irritating if you're not a Streisand fan but probably quite enjoyable if you are.
9 January 2004 | by barnabyrudgeSee all my reviews

The Main Event tries to capture some of the flavour of those old '30s comedies in which the main characters were fast-talking, argumentative types who ultimately fell in love with other against all expectations. Barbra Streisand and Ryan O'Neal are re-teamed seven years on from their much-admired What's Up Doc? but this film isn't really from the same league. It is, however, moderately enjoyable and sharply written.

Streisand plays Hilary Kramer, a successful business-woman who runs a perfume corporation. She discovers that her accountant has fled to South America with all her money and all her assets, leaving her ruined. However, the one contract that the accountant forgot to take with him is that of a boxer, Eddie "Kid Natural" Scanlon (Ryan O'Neal). Hilary threatens Kid Natural with breach of contract if he won't fight for her (even though he's barely been in the ring for goodness knows how many years). Eventually, Kid Natural agrees to box again but he turns out to be pretty useless. Undeterred, Hilary fixes up a lucrative fight with one of his old adversaries, but complications arise when she realises that she has actually fallen for him.

Fans of Streisand will undoubtedly enjoy the film. For others, it's a bit irritating. She gets into the role with heart and soul, but her constant fast-talk, put downs and wise one-liners becomes very wearing if you're not an admirer. O'Neal is frustratingly laid-hack and seems to be playing his role with the minimum of effort, but he somehow just about gets across a likable enough performance. The situations and incidents that comprise the plot are nicely thought-out. The only moment which feels wrong is the ending, wherein Streisand does something really crazy to prove her love for O'Neal but what she does would, in actual fact, probably annoy the hell out of him, yet he takes it really well and it all seems somewhat unbelievable. Still, The Main Event is undemanding entertainment and you could do a lot worse.


7 of 7 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 15 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed