The Sunshine Boys

Comedy | English | 111 minutes


Al Lewis and Willy Clark were once a very popular Vaudeville team, known as  “The Sunshine Boys.” After 47 years together they parted ways on unfriendly terms. Willy’s nephew, Ben, a talent agent, is informed that a major network is planning a program on the history of comedy and they want to do a segment on “The Sunshine Boys.” Ben  is determined that these two cranks, who have not spoken to each other for 11 years, reconcile and do the segment. When they rehearse their most popular “Doctor Sketch” act, old wounds and grievances emerge. Both storm off the stage in anger. In the stairwell, a fuming Willy suffers a heart attack. In the hospital, Al visits a recovering Willy. They know they had a long history together, but is it too much, at their advanced age, to forgive and forget?

George Burns (Al Lewis) / Walter Matthau (Willy Clark) / Richard Benjamin (Ben Clark)
Why Stream This Film?

They were a great vaudeville act but the Sunshine Boys despised each other.  Now old, retired, and cantankerous, can they do one more gig for a TV special? Playwright Neil Simon thought so and made the whole process hilarious.

  • Rotten Tomatoes Score (Critics Consensus): 71%
  • Academy Awards: Winner, Best Actor in a Supporting Role (George Burns)
  • Golden Globe Awards: Winner, Best Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical; Best Supporting Actor (Richard Benjamin); Best Actors in a Comedy or Musical (Walter Matthau, George Burns)
  • Writers Guild of America: Winner, Best Comedy Adapted from Another Medium (Neil Simon)
THE SUNSHINE BOYS is an extremely sensitive and lovable film version of Neil Simon’s play, with Walter Matthau and George Burns outstanding in their starring roles as a pair of long-hostile partners.


Mr.Matthau is so good at playing old men, we may never know when he finally becomes one.
Vincent Canby

The New York Times

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