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Julia (1977)

PG  |   |  Drama  |  20 January 1978 (West Germany)
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 5,965 users  
Reviews: 41 user | 32 critic

At the behest of an old and dear friend, playwright Lillian Hellman undertakes a dangerous mission to smuggle funds into Nazi Germany.



(based upon the story by), (screenplay)
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Title: Julia (1977)

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Won 3 Oscars. Another 21 wins & 21 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Dora Doll ...
Woman Passenger
Elisabeth Mortensen ...
Girl Passenger
Young Julia
Susan Jones ...
Young Lillian
Cathleen Nesbitt ...
Maurice Denham ...


From "Pentimento," the memoirs of late playwright Lillian Hellman, JULIA covers those years in the 1930s when Lillian attained fame with the production of her first play "The Children's Hour" on Broadway. Not surprisingly, it centers on Lillian's relationship with her lifelong friend, Julia. It is a relationship that goes beyond mere acquaintance and one for which the word "love" seems appropriate. While Julia attends the University in Vienna, studying with such luminaries as Sigmund Freud and Albert Einstein, Lillian suffers through revisions of her play with her mentor and sometimes lover Dashiell Hammett at a New England beach house. After becoming a celebrated playwright, Lillian is invited to a writers' conference in Russia. Julia, having taken up the battle against fascism, enlists Lillian to smuggle money through Nazi Germany which will assist in the Anti-Fascist cause. It is a dangerous mission especially for a Jewish intellectual on her way to communist Russia. During a brief... Written by Mark Fleetwood <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Based on a true story. See more »




PG | See all certifications »




| | |

Release Date:

20 January 1978 (West Germany)  »

Also Known As:

Júlia  »

Box Office


$7,840,000 (estimated)


SEK 4,101,519 (Sweden)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


This is the first film that Meryl Streep has appeared in that has the name "Julia" in the title. The second is Julie & Julia (2009) in 2009. See more »


During a sailing shot, as the boat containing Julia and Lilian tracks away from the camera, the gunnel of the boat containing the camera crew is clearly visible for an instant in the lower left of the frame. See more »


Dashiell Hammett: [after reading Lillian's play] You better tear this up. It's not that it's bad, it's just not good enough, not for you.
See more »


Featured in The 70th Annual Academy Awards (1998) See more »


La Cucaracha
Played as Dance music
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User Reviews

Serious, splendidly done drama
27 February 2006 | by (New York, NY) – See all my reviews

This was one of the best pictures I had ever seen when it was first released, and after almost thirty years, I still think so, especially after watching the steady decline in quality of product that the film industry has turned out since.

Gorgeously photographed, costumed and written, with some of the finest acting on film, "Julia" succeeds in capturing the texture and truly world shattering issues of a time and place, Europe between the wars and on the brink of cataclysm. Everything about it shines, from the scenes of childhood in flashback to the suspenseful and tense train trip, I watch this film over and over waiting for one scene: the scene between Fonda and Redgrave in the Berlin restaurant. I just saw it again two hours ago and once again I was in awe of the acting, from both stars, some of the finest work of their careers, the direction of the scene and the spare, intense writing.

Whether the story itself was factual or not (Hellman might just have made it all up!) it works on so many levels that it's still worthy, and its truth or falsity just doesn't matter.

36 of 42 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Julia a work of total fiction EJF
did it ever get better? randy512tx
The Hat!! weenyboy
Goof Not Valid tanist67
Is the story true? JustCuriosity
when will it be available on dvd? lumpynose
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