6.8/10
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115 user 74 critic

Morvern Callar (2002)

R | | Drama | 1 November 2002 (UK)
After her beloved husband's suicide, a mourning supermarket worker and her best friend hit the road in Scotland, but find that grief is something that you can't run away from forever.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Kathleen McDermott ...
Lanna
...
Ruby Milton ...
Couris Jean
...
Susan
...
Dazzer
Carolyn Calder ...
Sheila Tequila
Raife Patrick Burchell ...
Boy in Room 1022
Steve Cardwell ...
Welcoming Courier
...
Guy with Hat's Mate
El Carrette ...
Gypsy Taxi Driver
Andrew Flanagan ...
Overdose
...
Him
Mette Karlsvik ...
Sick Girl / Bikini Girl
Andrew Knowles ...
Green Boy #1
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Storyline

Following her boyfriend's suicide, supermarket clerk Morvern Callar passes off his unpublished novel as her own. With the money her boyfriend left for his funeral, she leaves Scotland for Ibiza where she travels with her closest friend. The journey prompts a series of internal and external transformations for Morvern-- ones which bring to light her experiences of grief, memory, freedom, and desire. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexuality, nudity, language and some disturbing images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

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Release Date:

1 November 2002 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Le voyage de Morvern Callar  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

£82,014 (UK) (3 November 2002)

Gross:

$267,194 (USA) (24 August 2003)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Morvern Callar was the debut novel by Scottish author Alan Warner, first published in 1995. See more »

Goofs

When Morvern changes the name on the manuscript, there is a shot of her hitting the "delete" key repeatedly, followed by a shot of the cursor at the end of her boyfriend's name, and the characters disappearing one by one from the end. In English versions of Windows (and Mac OS X), the "delete" key deletes characters after the cursor, not before it. Depending on the program and keyboard, "delete" could work like "backspace." See more »

Quotes

Lanna: Where are we going?
Morvern Callar: Somewhere beautiful.
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Connections

References Ms .45 (1981) See more »

Soundtracks

Everything You Do Is a Balloon
Written by Mike Sandison / Marcus Eoin
Performed by Boards of Canada
Courtesy of Warp Music
By Arrangement with Skam Records
Published by EMI Virgin Music Ltd
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User Reviews

 
Ultimately flawed, but with some good ideas
18 November 2002 | by See all my reviews

For me, the most notable thing about this film was the scarcity of dialogue. It is a brave move on the director's part for sure, but for a film that tells a story of personal awakening (of sorts), the infrequent speech means we can never be sure of what Morvern is thinking or feeling. We don't get much help from the camera either - the film is exquisitely shot, but many of the scenes have a confrontational, tense and opaque sense of aesthetics - there is not enough variation in feel to tell the story of someone who changes their life completely.

My reading of Morvern Callar (as a film and a character) is of a woman who escapes from a humdrum, ugly life. Through personal awakening, art and good fortune, she comes to embrace a more bohemian and expansive existence. In short, she learns to live.

It's a big story and a big theme - yet we never really understand how and why Morvern comes to change her entire outlook on life. Neither do we hear enough from her to mitigate the more unpleasant sides of her character - her frequent (and occasionally sociopathic) lack of emotional response, her selfish excess, her deliberate mistreating of her friend. I suspect she is supposed to be a hero of sorts, but she could equally be an anti-hero or even something in between. We just never find out enough about her - in her words, anyone else's words or the director's shooting of her.

I'm glad that the film has made me consider questions like this, and as an intellectual exercise it's therefore quite enjoyable. As entertainment, as statement or as spectacle however, it's quite badly flawed.


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