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Doctor Zhivago (1965)

8.0
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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 47,012 users  
Reviews: 243 user | 79 critic

Life of a Russian doctor/poet who, although married, falls for a political activist's wife and experiences hardships during the Bolshevik Revolution.

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Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
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Title: Doctor Zhivago (1965)

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Won 5 Oscars. Another 18 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
Yevgraf
...
Siobhan McKenna ...
...
Rita Tushingham ...
The Girl
Jeffrey Rockland ...
Tarek Sharif ...
...
The Bolshevik
...
Kostoyed
Gérard Tichy ...
Liberius (as Gerard Tichy)
Noel Willman ...
Razin
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Storyline

Lara inspires lechery in Komarovsky (her mother's lover who is a master at surviving whoever runs Russia) and can't compete with passion for the revolution of the man she marries, Pasha. Her true love is Zhivago who also loves his wife. Lara is the one who inspires poetry. The story is narrated by Zhivago's half brother Yevgraf, who has made his career in the Soviet Army. At the beginning of the film he is about to meet a young woman he believes may be the long lost daughter of Lara and Zhivago. Written by Dale O'Connor <daleoc@interaccess.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

love | epic | russia | bolshevik | poetry | See more »

Taglines:

A Love Caught in the Fire of Revolution See more »

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for mature themes | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

31 December 1965 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Doctor Zhivago  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$11,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$111,722,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (1999 re-release) | (1992 re-release)

Sound Mix:

(35 mm magnetic prints)| (Westrex Recording System) (70 mm prints)| (re-release) (35 mm prints)| (35 mm optical prints)| (Linear PCM)

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The actor who plays the young Yuri Zhivago at his mother's funeral is Omar Sharif's son Tarek Sharif. See more »

Goofs

The city railroad scenes were filmed in Spain, and many of the forest railroad scenes were filmed in Finland; in both of those countries, most of the railroad track is broad gauge (the rails are more than 5 feet apart). The plains and mountains railroad scenes were largely shot in Canada, where the rails are "standard gauge": 4' 8 & 1/2" apart. The rails can be seen to jump between far apart and closer together more than once as the movie progresses. See more »

Quotes

Tonya: Yuri, there's an extraordinary girl at this party.
Zhivago: I know. I'm dancing with her.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Damsels in Distress (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Prelude in G minor, Op.23-5
(1901) (uncredited)
Composed by Sergei Rachmaninoff
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Drowned in the Purity of Sentiment
9 December 2004 | by (London, UK) – See all my reviews

No wonder the highest directorial achievement for direction of the British Academy of Film and Television is named after David Lean. An artist who knew how to combine great performances, with breathtaking settings, haunting soundtrack, in order to create works of art that are to remain as pillars for the future generations of film-makers.

"Doctor Zhivago" is definitely one of his most outstanding works, a film that breathes with life, and suffers with passion. Neither, though, of the credited people can take as much credit for it, as David Lean. Omar Sharif delivers one of his best performances of his career, Julie Christie has never been as stunning, or Rod Steiger as Komarovsky or Tom Courtenay as Antipov ever left more memorable performances than these ones. Not even Maurice Jarre, who composed one of the most unforgettable themes in film history, or Robert Bolt, for his skillful adaptation on Pasternak's difficult novel, not even Freddy Young's cinematography, can rise above the vibration of genius, which is David Lean. We almost feel the complexity of the universe collapsing on us with a mad power that we instantly become part of it, and fall in love with all its particles.

For those who haven't seen the film, this might make little sense, and it can give a misleading understanding of what one is to expect. "Doctor Zhivago" is a poet, who at the beginning of the 20th Century is caught in the historical Bolshevik revolution. An outstanding doctor, married to his childhood friend, Tonya (Geraldine Chaplin in a warm performance), finds that there is beauty beyond deceit, love beyond commitment, by starting an affair with an enigmatic lady which appears often in his path in the most unnoticeable of moments. Their destiny is as confused as Russia in the turmoil started by the Reds, it is shaped by history without their approval. There is no solution for a country that abandoned its passions in its desire of self-improvement, just as for the two lovers, which find themselves abandoned in the middle of the Siberian taiga.

This is a slow film and for the good reasons. We are allowed to breathe the story, to give it momentum, and to judge it from within, as if the choices were not Yury's, Lara's or Tonya's, but our own creation. And this is the brilliance of Lean's direction. The story transcends time and space, and it melts within the triviality of our life. Beyond it, we are left with nothing but love, pure and blindingly real.


105 of 148 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Chaplin/Tonya, or Christie/Lara? fnj2002
Worst Movie I Have Ever Seen spbutters
why dr zhivago didn't leave russia with lara, If he loved her so much? erfanall
Why did Sharif get such poor billing on the movie poster? imdb-19700
Why is this film NOTconsidered one of the greatest films of all time? black-warrior007
Julie Christie looks like Peter O' Tool? shomy007
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