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Being Julia (2004) - Oscar® Nominee

Director: István Szabó     Starring: Annette Bening Jeremy Irons
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Learn more about Being Julia:

Format: DVD
Sku: 40706667
UPC: 043396091740
UPC 14: 00043396091740
Category Keywords: 1930s  Actors  Actresses  Directors  England  Theatrical Release
Rating: Game Rating Code
See more in Family & Kids
Actress julia lambert is at her peak but longs for novelty and excitement. Tom is a younger man who claims to be her biggest fan. Finding his ardor irresistible, she embarks on a passionate affair. Life becomes more daring and exciting, until her young lover tries to relegate her to a supporting role.

"'s the glorious Annette Bening who hoists this flawed production on her mink-wrapped shoulders and makes it work.  Carla Meyer, San Francisco Chronicle
"The pleasures are in the actual presence of the actors, Bening most of all...  Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

Editor's Note
As she enters her early 40s, London theater actress Julia Lambert (Annette Bening) starts having a nervous breakdown. She still rules the West End, but is growing too old for ingenue parts. When Tom Fennell (Shaun Evans), an adoring lad half her age, comes into her life, a clandestine affair begins. Though she's happy for a while, Julia eventually winds up in a face-off with a Tom's other, much younger lover (Lucy Punch). Luckily, the spirit of Julia's cantankerous old acting coach (London theater legend Michael Gambon) follows Julia around offering some tough-love encouragement.

Set in the late 1930s, this is a fine costume comedy-drama about the sorrows and joys of art. The eternal question of "when am I acting and when am I myself?" has seldom been addressed as intelligently as it is here; Bening seems to be not only tangling with her own status as an aging beauty, but also with the limits of her own acting abilities, and it's a pleasure to see her transcend both with such triumphant exuberance. Bravo, Miss Bening, and kudos to director Szabó (MEPHISTO) for rendering his obvious love of theater, cinema, and actors with such contagious warmth. Other fine performances include Jeremy Irons as Julia's manager/husband and Juliet Stevens as her jaded maid.


Video Features DVD, Widescreen, Aspect Ratio 1.85:1, Dolby Digital (5.1)

Technical Info

Release Information
Video Mfg Name Studio: Sony
Video Release Date Release Date: 3/6/2012
Video Play Time Running Time: 103 minutes
Video Release Year Original Release Date: 2004
Video CategoryId Catalog ID: 09174
Video UPC UPC: 00043396091740
Video Number of Discs Number of Discs: 1

Audio & Video
Video Original Language Original Language: English
Video Audio Spec Available Audio Tracks: English
Video Color Spec Video: Color

Cast & Crew

Video Cast Info Annette Bening
Video Cast Info Jeremy Irons
Video Cast Info Leigh Lawson
Video Cast Info Michael Gambon
Video Cast Info Shaun Evans
Video Cast Info Istvan Szabo - Director
Video Cast Info Lajos Koltai - Cinematographer
Video Cast Info Mark Milln - Executive Producer
Video Cast Info Mychael Danna - Musical Score
Video Cast Info Robert Lantos - Producer
Video Cast Info Ronald Harwood - Writer
Video Cast Info Susan Shipton - Editor


Oscar (2005)
   Video Award Name Annette Bening, Nominee, Best Actress

Golden Globe (2005)
Video Award Name Annette Bening, Winner, Best Actress

Screen Actors Guild (2005)
   Video Award Name Annette Bening, Nominee, Best Actress

Professional Reviews

New York Times
"Ms. Bening shows both fragility and dignity, managing a hectic plot with glamour and aplomb." 10/15/2004 p.E14

Los Angeles Times
"Bening and a lustrous ensemble cast have brought to vivid life W. Somerset Maugham's 1937 novella THEATRE....They have done so with such verve and panache that this film can never be described as merely a romp or a star vehicle." 10/15/2004 p.E6

Entertainment Weekly
"[I]t has enough surprises to keep you guessing, and for Annette Bening it's the liveliest of comebacks." 10/22/2004 p.72

Sight and Sound
"It is an expert performance from Bening, combining coquetry, lust, anger, sarcasm, vulnerability and hauteur..." 12/01/2004 p.36

Movieline's Hollywood Life
"BEING JULIA finds old-fashioned fun in a 1937 W. Somerset Maugham novella..." 12/01/2004 p.103

Wall Street Journal
"Of the many gifts that Annette Bening brings to her best roles, the most endearing may be a sense of self-enjoyment....This quality shines through every one of her scenes in BEING JULIA." 05/07/2010

James Berardinelli's ReelViews 7 of 10
Not having read the source material, I can't speak to the faithfulness of the adaptation. But I can - James Berardinelli

Rolling Stone 7 of 10
Annette Bening can act -- watch American Beauty or Bugsy or The Grifters -- but - Peter Travers

Product Attributes

Product attributeActor:   Bening,Annette
Product attributeLabel:   Columbia/tri-Star
Product attributeMusic Format:   DVD
Product attributeVideo Format:   DVD
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