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Film / ...All the Marbles

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...All the Marbles is a 1981 Professional Wrestling comedy-drama film directed by Robert Aldrich and starring Peter Falk as Harry Sears, the manager of the Tag Team the California Dolls, Iris (Vicki Frederick) and Molly (Laurene Landon). It won the Hochi Film Award (Japan) for "Best Foreign Language Film."

"...All the Tropes"

  • Action Girl: It's about women's wrestling, what else would you expect?
  • Alliterative Name: The Toledo Tigers.
  • As Himself: Pittsburgh Steelers legend Mean Joe Greene is the ring announcer for the tag title match, and sportscaster Chick Hearn calls the action.
  • Big Entrance: For the title match, the Dolls come out in elaborate costumes being carried out by scantily-clad muscular men to the strains of "Oh, You Beautiful Doll."
  • Brotherhood of Funny Hats: The Mud Wrestling match is organized by the Vice President of the Kiwanis Club.
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  • By the Hair: All the time.
  • Catfight: The Mud Wrestling match is basically one of these.
  • Clothing Damage: During the Mud Wrestling match.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: For the tag title match, the Face Dolls wear white leotards, while the Heel Tigers wear orange and black striped leotards.
  • Easily-Distracted Referee: All the referees are portrayed this way, with the possibility of wrestlers being screwed over considered to be a distinct possibility at all times.
  • Fan Disservice: The beautiful Molly eventually appears nude while taking a shower... but it's a Shower of Angst following Harry and Molly having an argument in which they slapped each other.
  • Finishing Move: Harry tells the Dolls to work on "those sunset flips." They win the titles via stereo sunset flips.
  • I Take Offense to That Last One: After the Mud Wrestling debacle, Molly calls Harry "a lousy human being" and "a lousy manager." Harry says, "I am not a lousy manager."
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  • Insult Backfire: Promoter Eddie Cisco calls Molly a bitch, and she tells him that she's been called worse by much better people.
  • It's the Best Whatever, Ever!: Chick Hearn says, "This is the greatest fight in history!"
  • Leotard of Power: All the wrestlers.
  • Market-Based Title: Retitled The California Dolls for foreign markets because "All the Marbles" was an American slang expression that didn't mean anything outside the U.S.
  • Ms. Fanservice: The California Dolls are drop-dead gorgeous, and the female wrestling theme of the film is an opportunity to showcase their physiques. The other teams aren't slouches either.
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: The Dolls' costumes get described by someone as making them look like "virgin vampires."
  • No Name Given: Lennie Bremen's character is credited as "No-Name Promoter."
  • Panthera Awesome: The Toledo Tigers, of course.
  • Pop-Cultural Osmosis Failure: Type 2. Eddie Cisco tells Harry that if he wanted class, he'd get the Brontë sisters. Harry says, "My girls will tear their legs off."
  • Pro Wrestling Is Real: The film absolutely pushes this idea. As the Toledo Tigers' manager says after the Dolls' first match with them, "Nobody's supposed to win!" As a result, EVERYTHING (cheating, referees being distracted, money) is treated as Serious Business.
  • Title Drop: Before the tag match, Chick Hearn says, "It's safe to say that this match is for all the marbles."
  • Vanity License Plate: Harry's Cadillac has custom California license plates that say "TAG TEAM".
  • Would Hit a Girl: Harry slaps Molly for spending the night with promoter Eddie Cisco, though she slaps him back. This is followed by Molly taking a Shower of Angst.