7.0/10
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116 user 93 critic

Being Julia (2004)

Trailer
2:11 | Trailer
Set in '30s London, the film involves stage actors and their experiences with love and revenge.

Director:

István Szabó

Writers:

W. Somerset Maugham (novel), Ronald Harwood (screenplay)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 9 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Gambon ... Jimmie Langton
Annette Bening ... Julia Lambert
Leigh Lawson ... Archie Dexter
Shaun Evans ... Tom Fennel
Mari Kiss Mari Kiss ... Mr. Gosselyn's Secretary
Jeremy Irons ... Michael Gosselyn
Ronald Markham Ronald Markham ... Butler
Terry Sach Terry Sach ... Chauffeur
Catherine Charlton ... Miss Philips
Juliet Stevenson ... Evie
Miriam Margolyes ... Dolly de Vries
Max Irons ... Curtain Call Boy
Andrew Paton Story Busher Andrew Paton Story Busher ... Male Singer
George Lang George Lang ... Antoine the Maitre D
Michael Culkin ... Rupert
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Storyline

1938. Julia Lambert and Michael Gosselyn are the royal couple of the London theater scene, Julia an actress and Michael a former actor who took over running the theater and its troupe upon the passing of their mentor, Jimmie Langton. Jimmie is still constantly with Julia in spirit as she navigates through life. Besides their work, Julia and Michael lead largely separate lives, they long ago having stopped a sexual relationship. Julia of late has been feeling disenchanted with her life, she not wanting to admit it's because she is approaching middle age. Her disenchantment manifests itself in wanting Michael to close their current production early so that she can recharge her juices, something he is reluctant to do if only for not wanting to let the theater sit empty. What Julia ends up doing instead is embarking on an affair with Tom Fennel, an adoring young American who is young enough to be her son. As Julia and Tom's relationship progresses, the more she falls in love with him and ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Passion. Obsession. Revenge. Prepare for the performance of a lifetime.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Canada | USA | Hungary | UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 February 2005 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Adorable Julia See more »

Filming Locations:

Budapest, Hungary See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$122,214, 17 October 2004

Gross USA:

$7,739,049

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$14,339,171
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Evie, Julia's maid, insinuates that Dolly may be a lesbian for always visiting during Julia's massages. This may be an in-joke, as Miriam Margolyes, who plays Dolly, has been with her partner, Heather Sutherland, since 1968. See more »

Goofs

Michael hands Julia a beer bottle that he opened by twisting off the cap; this innovation wasn't introduced until the mid-1960s. See more »

Quotes

Jimmie Langton: I've lived in the theatre since I was a kid, what I don't know about acting isn't worth knowing. Now, you may be 20 years old and just beginning, but I think you're a genius. You've got magnetism, but no idea how to use it. You have to grab the audience by the throat and say "Now, you buggers, you pay attention to me!" and remember this, when you're on the stage acting, theatre is the only reality, everything else, the world outside, what civilians call the real world, is nothing but fantasy ...
See more »

Connections

Version of Bezaubernde Julia (1960) See more »

Soundtracks

Bei Mir bist Du Schon
Written by Sholom Secunda, Jacob Jacobs, Sammy Cahn and Saul Chaplin
Published by EMI Music Publishing Ltd. and Warner Bros. Inc.
Performed by The Andrews Sisters
Courtesy of Pavillion Records/Flapper Label
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Acting Up A Storm
20 June 2005 | by terrygiu2000See all my reviews

Tom Sturridge in a lovely performance as Roger, Julia's son, puts it beautifully in a soft confrontation with his mother. "You're playing, mother, or playing wife..." Yes, acting as a way of life as a way of being. Tricky. Ronald Harwood can write the ins and outs of theatrical life better than any living soul - remember "The Dresser? - This is not any way near as good or as insightful but is charming and fun. Lilli Palmer played the part back in the 60's in "Adorable Julia" and she was adorable indeed as is Annette Bening in a tour de force performance with regular interruptions to give plenty of space to the trade mark Bening giggle. Shaun Evans plays the young man, the object of Julia's desire, her frustrating emotional holiday and I must admit, that's the one element that should have sizzle instead of fizzle. Shaun Evans is a good actor but it doesn't have anything that would make us understand the folly attraction that awakes in Julia. He plays an American but appears bland, as bland as a British actor can be when he's bland. I longed for a Billy Crudup or someone younger, a Brad Renfro. Can you imagine what the movie would have been like with a Heath Ledger in that part? Unless, of course, the whole thing was intentional to underline Julia's absurdity. An actress on the verge of a nervous break down. Comparasions with "All About Eve" are ridiculous. That would be like comparing "One Flew Over The Cookoo's Nest" with "The Couch Trip"


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