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Modern Romance
File:Modern romance.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byAlbert Brooks
Written byAlbert Brooks
Monica Johnson
Produced byAndrew Scheinman
Martin Shafer
StarringAlbert Brooks
Kathryn Harrold
Bruno Kirby
CinematographyEric Saarinen
Edited byDavid Finfer
Distributed byColumbia Pictures
Release date
  • March 13, 1981 (1981-03-13)
Running time
93 minutes
CountryUnited States

Modern Romance is a 1981 American comedy film directed by and starring Albert Brooks,[1] who also co-wrote the script with Monica Mcgowan Johnson.[2] It co-stars Kathryn Harrold and Bruno Kirby.


Robert Cole (Albert Brooks) is a Hollywood film editor right in the middle of cutting a new science fiction film with George Kennedy. His relationship with very patient bank executive Mary Harvard (Kathryn Harrold) is caught between undying devotion and endless agony. It's all because selfish Robert is a bit of a self-involved neurotic who can't quite decide if their relationship is meant to be, mainly because he's not sure if she's the one or there's someone else.

Robert breaks off their relationship only to find that modern romance isn't as easy as it seems, and the people you love might be the ones you constantly hurt the most. He and Mary end up driving to a cabin in Idyllwild, California, where intense jealousy causes Robert to alternately accuse and annoy Mary and propose marriage to her.


  • Albert Brooks as Robert Cole
  • Kathryn Harrold as Mary Harvard
  • Bruno Kirby as Jay
  • George Kennedy as Himself; Zoron
  • Albert Henderson as Head Mixer


Bruno Kirby co-stars as Jay, Robert's co-worker and confidant, and Brooks' brother Bob Einstein, best known as hapless daredevil Super Dave Osborne, plays a pushy salesman at a sporting goods store.

A third brother, Cliff, has a cameo in the scenes set in the recording studio. He plays the music mixer, the bald man sitting to the left of the head mixer, who gets up and goes to his car during the break.

David, the director of the film that Robert is editing, is played by real-life film director James L. Brooks - no relation to Albert. He would later return the favor by casting Albert in his Academy Award-nominated role of Aaron Altman in Broadcast News.

According to Albert Brooks, Stanley Kubrick was a big fan of the film. He tells the story that Kubrick called him after viewing the film and asked "How did you make this movie? I've always wanted to make a movie about jealousy."[3]


  1. "Modern Romance". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved March 2, 2016.
  2. Brooks, Albert (1981-03-13), Modern Romance, retrieved 2016-08-30
  3. Albert Brooks takes a look back on his career | Broadcast News | Movie News | Movies | Entertainment Weekly | 1

External links[]

Template:Albert Brooks