The youngest son of a working-class Jewish family yearns to climb the social ladder and to be 'someone' has a brief but dubious rise into power, bringing with it changes in family life and a sense of self-actualization and adulthood.
Richard Dreyfuss stars as an upwardly mobile, stamp-on-everyone-in-sight Canadian Jewish ghetto kid working his way up in show-biz in this blandly directed (Ted Kotcheff) but neatly acted, slick and absorbing adaption of the Mordecai Richler story. Dreyfuss is allowed to be unsympathetic behind his rat-tooth charm for a change, and obviously relishes the opportunity to do close friends dirt.
The highlight of the film, however, is Denholm Elliott's performance as a pretentious art movie director Duddy hires to film a friend's bar-mitzvah, and who turns in a hilarious bit of Eisensteinian montage that leaves the happy parents aghast.
Well worth seeking out