Aria (1987)

R  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Music  |  July 1988 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.8/10 from 2,084 users  
Reviews: 24 user | 17 critic

Ten short pieces directed by ten different directors, including Ken Russell, Jean-Luc Godard, Robert Altman, Bruce Beresford, and Nicolas Roeg. Each short uses an aria as soundtrack/sound (... See full summary »


(segment), (segment), 8 more credits »
0Check in

Watch Now

From $1.99 on Amazon Video

1 nomination. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Caravaggio (1986)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A retelling of the life of the celebrated 17th-century painter through his brilliant, nearly blasphemous paintings and his flirtations with the underworld.

Director: Derek Jarman
Stars: Noam Almaz, Dexter Fletcher, Nigel Terry
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Two convicts break out of Mississippi State Penitentiary in 1936 to join a third on a long spree of bank robbing, their special talent and claim to fame. The youngest of the three falls in ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Altman
Stars: Keith Carradine, Shelley Duvall, John Schuck
The Dog (2013)
Documentary | Adventure | Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A documentary portrait of the late John Wojtowicz, whose attempted robbery of a Brooklyn bank to finance his male lover's sex-reassignment surgery was the real-life inspiration for Dog Day Afternoon (1975).

Directors: Allison Berg, Frank Keraudren
Stars: John Wojtowicz, Carmen Bifulco, Jeremy Bowker
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.7/10 X  

This is an insane and fast-paced romantic comedy about a bizarre dinner date among Bruce (Goldblum) and Prudence (Hagerty), and their lunatic therapists, and Bruce's jealous, gun-wielding ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Altman
Stars: Julie Hagerty, Jeff Goldblum, Glenda Jackson
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A repressed, middle-aged divorced U.S. Greek meets a young singer through a dating service and becomes smitten.

Director: Robert Altman
Stars: Paul Dooley, Marta Heflin, Titos Vandis
Documentary | Biography | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

A documentary of the successful career and assassination of San Francisco's first elected gay councilor.

Director: Rob Epstein
Stars: Harvey Fierstein, Harvey Milk, Anne Kronenberg
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

O.C. and Stiggs aren't your average unhappy teenagers. They not only despise their suburban surroundings, they plot against it. They seek revenge against the middle class Schwab family, who embody all they detest: middle class.

Director: Robert Altman
Stars: Daniel Jenkins, Neill Barry, Jane Curtin
Gambit (1966)
Comedy | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

An English cat burglar needs a Eurasian dancer's help to pull off the perfect heist, but even the most foolproof schemes have a way of backfiring.

Director: Ronald Neame
Stars: Shirley MacLaine, Michael Caine, Herbert Lom
Black Widow (1987)
Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A federal investigator tracks down a gold digging woman who moves from husband to husband, kills them and collects the inheritance.

Director: Bob Rafelson
Stars: Debra Winger, Theresa Russell, Sami Frey
Streamers (1983)
Crime | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Four young soldiers waiting to be shipped to Viet Nam deal with racial tension and their own intolerance when one soldier reveals he's gay.

Director: Robert Altman
Stars: Matthew Modine, Michael Wright, Mitchell Lichtenstein
Track 29 (1988)
Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A doctor's wife tires of his obsession with model trains, and spends her days wondering about the son she gave up for adoption at birth. While eating at a roadside cafe, she encounters a ... See full summary »

Director: Nicolas Roeg
Stars: Theresa Russell, Gary Oldman, Christopher Lloyd
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Late on Guy Fawkes Day, 1892, Oscar Wilde arrives at a high-class brothel where a surprise awaits: a staging of his play "Salome," with parts played by prostitutes, Wilde's host, his lover ... See full summary »

Director: Ken Russell
Stars: Glenda Jackson, Stratford Johns, Nickolas Grace


Cast overview, first billed only:
King Zog (segment "Un ballo in maschera")
Stephanie Lane ...
Baroness (segment "Un ballo in maschera")
Roy Hyatt ...
Chauffeur (segment "Un ballo in maschera")
Sevilla Delofski ...
Maid (segment "Un ballo in maschera")
Ruth Halliday ...
Companion (segment "Un ballo in maschera")
Arthur Cox ...
Major (segment "Un ballo in maschera")
Dennis Holmes ...
Colonel (segment "Un ballo in maschera")
Paul Brightwell ...
Assassin (segment "Un ballo in maschera")
Frank Baker ...
Assassin (segment "Un ballo in maschera")
Chris Hunter ...
Assassin (segment "Un ballo in maschera")
Nicola Swain ...
Marie (segment "La virgine degli angeli")
Jackson Kyle ...
Travis (segment "La virgine degli angeli")
Marianne McLoughlin ...
Kate (segment "La virgine degli angeli")
Marion Peterson ...
Les Jeunes Filles (segment "Armide")
Valérie Allain ...
Les Jeunes Filles (segment "Armide")


Ten short pieces directed by ten different directors, including Ken Russell, Jean-Luc Godard, Robert Altman, Bruce Beresford, and Nicolas Roeg. Each short uses an aria as soundtrack/sound (Vivaldi, Bach, Wagner), and is an interpretation of the particular aria. Written by Ed Sutton <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Ten great directors. One unforgettable film. The most sensual experience you'll ever have in a movie theater. See more »


Comedy | Drama | Music


R | See all certifications »




| | |

Release Date:

July 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ária  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$1,028,679 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Federico Fellini was attached to this project in the very beginning. He worked with producer Don Boyd in Rome and only dropped out because he was ill--he was making his much delayed Intervista (1987). Like everybody else who saw "Aria", he loved various sections of the movie, particularly those of Franc Roddam and Julian Temple. See more »


Les Jeunes Filles: [Armide segment] He looks like he's made for love. He hasn't found my eyes charming enough. He hasn't found my eyes charming enough.
Les Jeunes Filles: O how I'd love to hate him.
See more »


Referenced in The Directors: The Films of Robert Altman (2001) See more »


(Entracte) - Suite des Vents
from "Les Boréades (Acte 3)"
Performed by English Baroque Soloists
Conducted by John Eliot Gardiner
segment "Les Boreades"
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

erotic tension, great arias
2 August 2003 | by (Houston, TX) – See all my reviews

I'm an opera buff, and operas are full of sex, blood and death. It may help to know the librettos of the operas the arias are from to really appreciate this film -- my mileage is very different than Tug-3. I am a classical music lover, and I liked this film.

I loved Ken Russell's "Nessun Dorma" segment, and would actually like to see him produce Turandot, because opera is supposed to be overwhelming, truly multi-media experience , but then I loved Lisztomania. I love *Turandot* and knowing the libretto so well may be why I don't find this segment the travesty that Tug-3 did.

The Buck Henry/ Rigoletto segment is probably the most approachable for the average viewer -- they are likely to recognize the tunes, and its a classic bedroom farce. I like bedroom farces, so the silliness didn't upset me.

The "Liebestod" segment is so outstanding that I recommend people watch this for that piece alone. "Depuis la Jour" was, for me, beautifully spiritual. And the Caruso recording of "Vesti la Giubba" (aka I Pagliacci) with John Hurt as the clown was wonderful. But people just wanting naked women may feel there is too much music and not enough bare flesh and sex.

16 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Credits - the piece vasikom
Discuss Aria (1987) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: