[[quoteright:250:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/The_Fisher_King_Poster_3743.jpg]]

[- ''If you are looking for the trope about rulers whose lands reflect their state of being, hop on over to FisherKing.'' -]

''The Fisher King'' is a comedy-drama film made in 1991, written by Richard [=LaGravenese=] and directed by Creator/TerryGilliam. It stars Creator/JeffBridges, Creator/RobinWilliams, Mercedes Ruehl, Amanda Plummer and Michael Jeter. The film is about a radio shock-jock who tries to find redemption by helping a homeless man whose life he inadvertently shattered.

Jack Lucas (Bridges), a cynical, arrogant shock-jock talk radio host, lives a selfish, high-profile life until his insensitive and ill-timed advice spurs an unstable caller to commit a mass shooting at a crowded Manhattan restaurant. The incident costs Jack his career, and his guilt sends him into a deepening spiral of bitterness. Three years later, Jack runs a video-rental store with his long-suffering girlfriend Anne. While heavily intoxicated and depressed, he attempts suicide. Before he can do so, he is mistaken for a homeless person and is attacked and nearly set on fire by ruffians. He is rescued by Parry (Williams), a deluded homeless man on a mission to find the HolyGrail. Jack learns, to his horror, that Parry is a former English professor DrivenToMadness by the death of his wife, who was murdered in the mass shooting Jack unwittingly caused. Parry is pursued by a hallucinatory Red Knight, a terrifying figure that seems to appear whenever he comes too close to remembering his former life.

At first Jack believes that Parry has come into his life to punish him for his sins, but gradually he begins to hope that by helping Parry, he himself might be forgiven. With Anne's help, Jack attempts to rescue Parry by giving him a job and even helping him meet the mousy young woman whom Parry has deemed his ''princess lointaine''. But Parry insists that the only thing that he wants of Jack is help in his quest to find the Grail. Desperate for peace, Jack allows himself to be roped into the mad quest in the hopes that it will bring him the healing he seeks.

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!!This movie contains examples of:

* AbnormalAmmo: Parry uses a plunger as an arrow.
* {{Adorkable}}: Parry and Lydia, especially when they're on their date.
* AccidentalBargainingSkills: Jack initially attempts to quiet his conscience by just giving Parry some money, and keeps increasing the amount after misinterpreting Parry's lack of reaction (which is actually stunned pleasure at this, as far as he's aware, unmotivated act of charity).
* AllGirlsWantBadBoys:
-->'''Anne:''' I think man was made in the Devil's image, and women were created outta God. 'Cause, after all, women can have babies, which is kinda like creating. And which also accounts for the fact that women are so attracted to men. 'Cause let's face it, the Devil is a helluva lot more interesting. I've slept with some saints in my day, and believe me, I know what I'm talking about. Egh-boy!
* ArcWords: "Forgive me". What the movie is all about.
* TheAtoner: Jack tries so hard to help Parry because he feels responsible for his condition, as it was an offhand comment of his that drove his wife's killer into a rampage.
* AWorldHalfFull
* AwLookTheyReallyDoLoveEachOther[=/=]KissKissSlap: Jack and Anne often bicker and their relationship seems to be more sexual than anything. But there are moments that show that both do really love each other. Anne herself actually wants Jack to tell her he loves her, and it isn't until the very end that he finally says this to her. The result: a slap across the face immediately followed by a passionate kiss.
* {{Badass}}: For a crazy hobo, Parry shows quite a lot of skill, first seen when he deals with the two teens who assault Jack in the beginning of the film.
** BadassLongcoat: Parry wears one in that same scene. Jack later dons the same one, along with the rest of Parry's knight attire, when he [[spoiler:"storms" Langdon Carmichael's place to retrieve the"grail".]]
* BatterUp: The teens use bats to beat Jack and later [[spoiler:Parry]].
* BettyAndVeronica: Lydia is Betty and Anne is Veronica.
* BigApplesauce: The film takes place in New York City.
* BigBad: From Parry's perspective, the Red Knight is this to him. While it's just a hallucination, it's also the only major antagonist force in the film.
* BrickJoke: Before his on-air comments to his psychotic listener result in a bloodbath, he's practising lines for a sitcom, ''On The Radio''. Shortly after he loses his radio job, his role is given to another actor. Much later in the movie, we find out that ''On The Radio'' was cancelled after one season.
* BrokenBird: Lydia doesn't want another lover due to being hurt by one in the past, and believes Parry will do the same.
* BuffySpeak: A woman (played by Kathy Najimi) wants to rent some ''funny'' videotape, like a "[[Creator/KatharineHepburn Katharine Hepburny]]-[[Creator/CaryGrant Cary Granty]] kinda thing" or a modern "Goldie Hawny-[[Creator/ChevyChase Chevy Chasy]] kinda thing" . She gets a "kinda big titty-spread cheeky kinda thing", ''[[ParallelPornTitle Ordinary]] [[Film/OrdinaryPeople Peepholes]]''.
* TheCameo: Music/TomWaits has an uncredited one as a disabled war veteran who chats with Jack in Central Station.
* CampGay: Just a few inches away from ChewingTheScenery for Michael Jeter.
* CanNotSpitItOut: Jack can't tell Anne he loves her until the end.
* CatchPhrase: "Forgive me!" is the catch phrase for Jack's character on the sitcom ''On The Radio''. (It's an {{Homage}} to Creator/SteveMartin's stand-up catch phrase, "Well, excuse me!")
* TheChosenOne: Parry believes Jack is the one destined to retrieve the Holy Grail.
* {{Cloudcuckoolander}}: Most of, if not all, the hobos, Parry in particular.
* ComicallyMissingThePoint: Parry tends to misunderstand what Jack is trying to say or do, such as the bargaining example above, or when he interprets Jack's attempt to convince him to abandon his insane plan to get the "grail" from a rich man's house as concern for his safety. Another is when Jack is ranting to him in the park.
--> '''Jack''': You are out of your fucking mind!
--> '''Parry''': Bingo!
* ConspicuousTrenchcoat: Edwin, the man who committed the massacre, wore an overcoat to hide his shotgun.
* CoupledCouples: Jack and Anne, and Parry and Lydia. The former two act as matchmakers for the other two.
* CrazyHomelessPeople: Parry, who believes that he is a knight on a quest to get the Holy Grail. Of course, it's all just a delusion.
* CuteClumsyGirl: Lydia.
* DeadpanSnarker: Jack, mainly in response to Parry's delusions. Anne and the Transvestite have their moments as well.
* DeathSeeker: Jack attempts to drown himself using CementShoes after a period of depression. Also [[spoiler:Parry is glad when the two teens return later to beat him, due to having intense flashbacks to his wife's murder.]]
* DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment: Jack does this when feeling uneasy about lying next to a naked Parry in the middle of Central Park:
--> '''Jack''': "Jack Lucas, found dead next to a dead, naked man. The two were dead and his companion was naked".
* DrivenToMadness: Parry's current condition is the result of this, as a result of his wife being murdered right in front of him - even getting her blood (and other things) splattered on him.
* DutchAngle: As expected in a Terry Gilliam film. Most prominent in the scenes with Parry and the other bums.
* FanDisservice: Parry dancing around naked in Central Park, covered in dirt.
* FishEyeLens: Used frequently in the film.
* FisherKing: The TropeNamer is discussed, but not quite invoked. See Magical Realism.
* FourEyesZeroSoul: Edwin wears a pair of glasses.
* GroinAttack: One of the teens cops this from Parry. With a plunger, no less!
* HeroicBSOD: Jack after learning of the massacre. He basically gives up on everything in his life.
* HeterosexualLifePartners: Jack and Parry form this over the course of the movie.
* HomelessHero: Parry.
* ImagineSpot: As Parry is following Lydia through Central Station, he imagines the whole place turning into a big ballroom dance. It's quite spectacular.
* ItsAllAboutMe: Jack is like this in the beginning. His ego is ultimately lowered after the massacre.
* JabbaTableManners: Both Lydia and Parry have less than proper manners when at the Chinese Restaurant.
* JadeColoredGlasses: Jack becomes TheCynic after his big mistake.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Jack begins as a cynical self-aggrandizing shock-jock who doesn't care who he hurts. Even his motivation to help Parry begins as a selfish urge to assuage his own guilt, which is destroying him (he even says as much: "I thought that if I could help him...things would change for me."). His friendship with Parry teaches him to be generous to others without expecting rewards.
* KarmaHoudini: Aside from being frightened off by the hobos the first time they appear, the teens don't receive any comeuppance for [[spoiler:putting Parry in a coma]].
* KingArthur: Parry's semi-symbolic quest for the Holy Grail.
* KingOfTheHomeless: Parry seems to lead his own small band of homeless people.
* KnightOfCerebus: Any scenes in which the Red Knight appears generally take a darker turn, even if it is just a hallucination on Parry's part. In fact, all the antagonistic characters have no humorous traits, so they all count.
* MagicRealism: Especially the scene in Grand Central Station. There's also echoes of this [[spoiler:when the 'grail' revives Parry]].
* MaleFrontalNudity: [[FanDisservice Shame about the context...]]
* MaybeMagicMaybeMundane: While the Red Knight is certainly in Parry's head, whether or not [[spoiler:the 'Holy Grail' really magically brings Parry out of his catatonic state or it's just the realization he's holding it that does it]] is never explained.
* MeaningfulName: Is Parry a diminutive of Percival?
* MockGuffin: [[spoiler:Somewhat ambiguous. While it appears to be the case, the 'Holy Grail' still somehow brings Parry out of his catatonic state.]]
* MoodWhiplash: Just as Parry and Lydia say their goodbyes after their date, which was quite uplifting and romantic, Parry starts having gruesome flashbacks to his wife's murder, and is chased around the city by the Red Knight. He eventually winds up by himself and [[spoiler:is unfortunate enough to encounter the teens again.]]
* NakedPeopleAreFunny: Parry goes ''au naturale'' in Central Park. At the end of the movie, he's gotten Jack to do the same.
* NiceGuy: Parry is a cheery, optimistic, friendly man, but of course, very troubled. As Jack puts it: "You are a psychotic man. A very ''nice'' psychotic man..."
* NiceHat: Parry has two. One for his knight attire and another for his casual clothing when out in the city.
* NoNameGiven: Michael Jeter's character is only known as "Homeless Cabaret Singer" in the credits.
* NoPeripheralVision: {{Lampshaded}} as Jack is breaking into Langdon Carmichael's home from the top window to get the "grail".
-->'''Jack:''' Thank God nobody looks up in this town!
* OddCouple: Parry and Jack.
* OhCrap[=/=]PrecisionFStrike:
-->'''Jack:''' ''(after hearing about the mass murder by the fan he told to go kill yuppies)'' ... '''''Fuck'''''...
* OminousLatinChanting: Heard when Parry is running from the Red Knight and experiencing gruesome flashbacks.
* PrideBeforeAFall: Jack used to be egotistical and rude as a shock jock, before the accident he caused through his own insensitivity.
* RedemptionQuest: Everything Jack does for Parry.
* RedOniBlueOni: Parry is the red, Jack is the blue.
* SarcasmBlind: Parry doesn't tend to get Jack's sarcasm either.
* ShockJock: Jack Lucas
* ShoutOut: There is a ''Film/{{Brazil}}'' poster hanging in the Video Shop which was also directed by Terry Gilliam.
* ShrinkingViolet: Lydia.
* SmallRoleBigImpact: Edwin is heard once over the radio and his screen time is limited to a couple of flashbacks and a hallucination, yet he is the one who committed the shooting and made Parry lose his sanity.
* SophisticatedAsHell: Parry speaks like this when he fights off Jack's attackers.
-->'''Parry:''' In the name of Blanche de Fleur, unhand that errant knight! You speak English? Let the bum go, dipshit!
* SpontaneousChoreography: The Central Station scene.
* StalkerWithACrush: Parry has followed Lydia around the city for a while and knows her daily routine.
** StalkingIsLove: AvertedTrope. Lydia never gets to know how long Parry has... eh... known her.
* StarmakingRole: No one knew who Michael Jeter was before this film.
* StormingTheCastle: Kind of. Though he's not taking down any villain, Jack does this when he [[spoiler:sneaks into the castle-shaped house of millionaire Langdon Carmichael in order to steal the "Holy Grail" for Parry.]]
* SuspiciouslyAproposMusic: Jack's theme when he's riding high is "I've Got the Power" by Snap.
* TeensAreMonsters: The two brutish teens who assault Jack in the beginning of the film [[spoiler:and who return later on to beat the crap out of Parry.]]
* {{Transvestite}}: This movie may have the most lovable DragQueen ever conceived.
* UnwittingInstigatorOfDoom: Jack didn't know that Edwin wasn't right in the head when he told him over the radio to go and kill yuppies.
* WhatYouAreInTheDark: [[spoiler:After Jack has broken into the Carmichael castle to steal the 'Holy Grail' for Parry, Jack discovers Langdon Carmichael himself unconscious and dying of a drug overdose. Jack considers leaving the man to die and escaping unimpeded with his prize. Instead--at considerable risk to himself, and with the knowledge that he can never take credit for the good deed--he deliberately triggers the burglar alarm and summons the police to save the man's life.]]
* WholesomeCrossdresser: Michael Jeter's character is practically the TropeCodifier.
* WisdomFromTheGutter: Parry practically becomes Jack's mentor.
* WorldOfHam: Many characters ChewTheScenery. Mostly the homeless people, especially Parry and the Transvestite. Jack even gets into it in Central Park!
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