7.4/10
28,807
133 user 54 critic

The Unbearable Lightness of Being (1988)

In 1968, a Czech doctor with an active sex life meets a woman who wants monogamy, and then the Soviet invasion further disrupts their lives.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
2,917 ( 282)

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Franz
...
The Ambassador
...
Pavel
...
Chief Surgeon
...
Interior Ministry Official
...
The Engineer
Tomasz Borkowy ...
Jiri (as Tomek Bork)
Bruce Myers ...
Czech Editor
Pavel Slabý ...
Pavel's Nephew
Pascale Kalensky ...
Nurse Katja
Jacques Ciron ...
Swiss Restaurant Manager
Anne Lonnberg ...
Swiss Photographer
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Storyline

Tomas is a doctor and a lady-killer in 1960s Czechoslovakia, an apolitical man who is struck with love for the bookish country girl Tereza; his more sophisticated sometime lover Sabina eventually accepts their relationship and the two women form an electric friendship. The three are caught up in the events of the Prague Spring (1968), until the Soviet tanks crush the non-violent rebels; their illusions are shattered and their lives change forever. Written by Dan Hartung <dhartung@mcs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A Lovers Story.

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

5 February 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La insoportable levedad del ser  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$17,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$10,006,806 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Philip Kaufman cast Daniel Day-Lewis after watching glimpses of the actor in a film shown on TV. He couldn't remember the name of the film but he remembered the actor's name and performance and decided that he was perfect for the role of Tomas. See more »

Goofs

During Sabina's final monologue at the end of the film, Lena Olin's Swedish accent is quite noticeable. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
First Title Card: In Prague, in 1968, there lived a young doctor named Tomas...
Tomas: Take off your clothes.
[line recurs several times during film]
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in The Unbearable Whiteness of Dean (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Sublime
22 November 2000 | by (Washington DC) – See all my reviews

Well acted and well directed. An uninhibited examination of lust vs. love, and the comfort of monogamy vs. the prison of possessiveness without over-dramatization or false emotion. Kaufman's depiction is faithful to Kundera's work, even if some depth is lost, as is inevitable in any film adaptation of a novel.


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