IMDb > Dying Young (1991) > Reviews & Ratings - IMDb
Dying Young
Quicklinks
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
Overview
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany credits
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsparents guidemessage board
Plot & Quotes
plot summarysynopsisplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
Promotional
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

Reviews & Ratings for
Dying Young More at IMDbPro »

Filter: Hide Spoilers:
Page 1 of 5:[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [Next]
Index 46 reviews in total 

22 out of 25 people found the following review useful:

A love story which stays inside of you long after viewing.

Author: Killiam Tierney (killiam@earthlink.net) from Malibu, California, USA
8 April 2001

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

A love story, deep and consuming. The characters stay with you, like family.

(I'm not sure what a 'spoiler' might be with a title like 'Dying Young' - so, if you don't wish to know what the movie is about . . . skip this comment!)

I've survived five different cancers since 1959. I've watched many others die from cancer, mostly because I've been treated in Veterans Hospitals since 1961 which had 'open cancer wards' of forty to sixty beds and we see all there is to see in each other's lives. I've seen this movie in real life, mine and many others' lives and families.

You will be utterly absorbed by the consummate, intricate writing of Richard Freidenberg's adaptation of the Marti Leimbach novel and the 'invisible' direction - my finest compliment - done by Joel Schumacher.

Throughout the film you'll be absorbed by the character's lives. How utterly real their pain, how complete their anguish, how deep their fear,how intense their love: both of the cancer victim Victor Geddes (Campbell Scott) and the loved ones - especially the caretaker becoming lover, Hiliary O'Neil (Julia Roberts).

If the Victor Geddes character had AIDS or Parkinson or Alzheimer's Disease? The audience and reviews would be thunderous applause; nines and tens. But: about cancer? The audience is frightened to give acclaim to cancer, the shadow disease.

The predictable audience reaction to a cancer victim story is amazing: Viewers fear contagion! In real life - friends, relatives, loved ones are frightened to death to visit a person with cancer; to 'touch' them?, to breath their air?, to be nearby?. That fear is brought to the theater, to the television and to the VCR. Fear is the Bitch Goddess of Cancer and was ever present in 'Dying Yong'!

I've never seen Julia Roberts (with whom I've been stuck since 'Pretty Woman") 'disappear into a role' as she did portraying the woman in love with a man dying with cancer. (I didn't see it in 'Erin Brockavich', at least not by comparison). Campbell Scott, playing the cancer sick Vic Geddes, is likewise consumed by the character and is invisible as an actor. There is not an actor before the camera throughout the film . . . just people about whom you Give-A-Damn; about people, not actors.

This is an amazing film.

Some might think I am biased because of my having had cancer: Perhaps. But, to see the gut wrenching under current, words which are never said, emotions programmatically withheld, denial and lies issued and ignored even though instantly recognized until there is a no longer any ability to do so was (is) the most profound treatment of catastrophic illness I've ever seen on film. I kept wanting to yell at each character to speak up, shout, get it out, say something!

(I wonder if those who have not had cancer had that same reaction.)

I hope that those who see this film will see the magnificence of its incredible love story (in spite of illness!) and feel its adroit kick in the shin rendered against the 'silence and lies' between those about whom you care when ill. This story is about love, about life, not about death.

If ever an actor deserved to be awarded an Oscar it was Julia Roberts' portrayal of a woman in love with a man dying with cancer in 'Dying Young.'

See this film: It is an incredible love story! You'll feel happy for all the characters, and, yourself.

Killiam Tierney

Was the above review useful to you?

24 out of 33 people found the following review useful:

One word; Fantastic.

10/10
Author: Anita (Nitaoxley0811@aol.com) from Nottinghamshire, England
18 June 2002

I bought this video in a sale for only £2.50 and although I knew it had Julia Robert in it, I thought that maybe this was going to be another "Firehouse" which.. Well did nothing for me. I turned the video on, lied on he sofa and cried! Very few movies ever make me cry, this being one that has never failed to every time I have seen it.

Hilary O'Neil is hired as a nurse when Victor Geddes' father goes away on business. Eventually, Hilary becomes more than his nurse, she becomes, in my opinion; His reason for living. This movie is a powerful and moving story of one man's need for love and a woman's need simply for a job.

Definitely one to watch!

Was the above review useful to you?

14 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

Beautifully sad movie that just misses the mark.

6/10
Author: Xeresa6 from San Diego, Ca
17 July 2007

My first complaint was that Vincent D'Onofrio was totally wasted in this role, although he brought some much needed life to this role. If they had fully developed Vincent'Onofrio's character then this could have been a beautiful and powerful triangle, but they wasted most of the supporting characters.

Campbell Scott was great as the young man dying of leukemia and gave a riveting performance as a young man who had never been able to fully live his life and groping for what he considers his last chance of happiness before dying.

Campbell Scott also has the courage to be unlikeable and at times arrogant rather than a plaster saint. His inability to connect and understand the simple friendship offered by Gordon(Vincent D'Onofrio) is almost painful to watch. He envies Gordon's easy openness and zest, and is also jealous of the way that Gordon effortlessly connects to JUlia Roberts character,Hilary.

The most poignant scene is when this young man of wealth, privilege, and education tries to relate with Gordon and Hilary who are getting a kick out of answering the questions to Jeopardy. He scores big on the questions that he studied in college, but grows more and more frustrated as Hilary and Gordon bond over their ordinary knowledge of TV shows-- like their singing the theme to Gilligan's Island. They are having fun, but Vincent can only see it as a competition.

In that moment he sees a world that he has never known and probably will never really get, and he lashes out at both of them. Gordon is hurt and puzzled and Hilary is torn between anger and understanding.

I wish that they had had Julia telling Gordon about how the character of Vincent was struggling with cancer, and having all three of them interact with each other bringing more depth to their struggles-- Vincent's jealousy of watching Hilary and Gordon interacting, and Gordon reaching out in friendship to help his new friend. It also would have given Hilary more insight into her emotions, and, when she made a choice it would have had more meaning.

Was the above review useful to you?

10 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Dying young

8/10
Author: one_way1983 from United States
16 May 2008

Every time this movie comes on television, I sit in my bedroom and watch it from start to finish as if it was the first time I've seen it. It is a film that focuses on a man, Victor (Campbell) dying of leukemia and his internal struggles of wanting to be carefree and wanting total companionship from the Hillary (Roberts), the woman he hires to take care of him. Eventually, Victor wishes that he could be well so that Hillary can look at him in a different light; however, Victor cannot see pass his disease to allow anyone to be in his life including his dad and Hillary. He abruptly stops his chemotherapy to go live life and die; however, he does not seem to be living it since he so competitive and wanting to be better than anyone else. You want Victor to be cured of the disease and you want him to be less envious of the well people and to stop worrying about death and just live, which is the whole message of the film. Don't be afraid of death since we all will eventually die and no one knows exact time when death will wrapped them in his arm, which is a very powerful message. Great acting from Campbell and Julia. Great cast. Please watch this film and formulate your own opions.

Was the above review useful to you?

8 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

Romantic tearjerker depicts heartbreak of cancer

6/10
Author: roghache from Canada
19 March 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This may not be classic cinema, but I found it a moving portrayal of both the suffering caused by cancer to its victims, and the grief to the loved ones who support them. Of course it's also a romantic tale of the relationship that develops between this particular patient and his caregiver.

The movie chronicles the story of a young woman, Hilary, who, following a recent betrayal by her boyfriend, takes a job as a private caregiver to a rather difficult young man, Victor, suffering from terminal blood cancer. It dramatically depicts Victor's struggles with chemotherapy (the scenes most memorable to me), and Hilary's assistance, with its ever increasing emotional involvement.

Julia Roberts brings her typical endearing qualities to the role of his nurse, who risks a broken heart by falling for a young man who is most certainly going to die soon. I've never seen Roberts in a role for which she didn't elicit viewer sympathy. Campbell Scott, son of actor George C. Scott, is also convincing as the young leukemia sufferer. My major complaint is Victor's lack of supportive family relationships (as I recall) or apparent faith. The movie could have been more meaningful if he'd had these, yet in addition, loved and needed Hilary. This scenario is dramatic, but it is unfortunate and simplistic that she is portrayed as his sole reason for living.

Get out the Kleenex, folks, for the entire movie. I liked the ambiguous ending that left the viewer able to cling to the remote prospect that Victor might miraculously survive. Its message of course is the devoted loyalty until death that Hilary offers. Some viewers have mentioned an alternate suicide ending; that would have definitely ruined the film for me.

Was the above review useful to you?

18 out of 29 people found the following review useful:

Julia Roberts scores again in a 4 handkerchief role

Author: JOHN WERNER from Glens Falls, New York
22 February 2003

Julia Roberts shows once again how she can take an ordinary script and turn it into a worthwhile flick. This is a great movie for one of those rainy afternoons when you don't mind a little tear here and there.No one in Hollywood can cry and hit you right in the gut like Julia. Along with Campbell Scott,who is dying from Leukemia, they both give believable performances and the music score is quite good.

Was the above review useful to you?

7 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

Moving, Realistic, and well acted!

Author: pheonix2029 from United States
19 April 2000

As someone who has seen this movie numerous times, I can honestly say that this movie isn't for those people that are looking for a "Happily ever after". This movie is as realistic as a movie about such a subject(Cancer) can be. But the best thing about this movie is the relationship that the characters have. The actors, Julia Roberts as the hired nurse and Campbell Scott as the very sick young man are excellent and believable in their rolls. If anything this movie brings out the fact that he has a short time to live, how he chooses to live his life is what this movie is about. The story ends in a way which WE the viewer choose the path we want to see it. If you want a happy ending you can say that they left together and he was cured, BUT if you are realistic and are aware of how many lives cancer takes you know that they had their time together and eventually he dies. "You don't know when you are going to die, nobody does. But we have now, so live with me Victor. Live with me--Hillary(Julia Roberts). Those words are the basis of this story, to live the time you have, live for the day. I have recommended this movie to many of my friends and I am doing so here and now. A must see.

Was the above review useful to you?

8 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

What a movie?

Author: alikaholley from Cleveland, Ohio
1 November 2001

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I absolutely love this movie. I think it is one of the best romance films on the market. This movie can move you in so many ways. It made me laugh, it made me angry, it made me cry. I thought the end was very touching. I cried so hard. I don't know why the review says he dies because no one knows. It has an open ending and you can take from it what you want. I know everyone is allowed to have his or her opinion but to say he dies is assuming. I like to believe that he lives. He was getting better with the chemo. He could get better again. I thought this was just the best movie ever.

Was the above review useful to you?

13 out of 20 people found the following review useful:

The last face you see will be mine becuase I love you

10/10
Author: Rainbow2003 from Montgomery, Alabama
30 January 2003

Julia Roberts is excellent as Hilary in this impressive romance film. The remaining cast is spectacular. The costumes are elegant. One of the excellent flicks in the genre, Dying Young will press the viewer to love until death. 10 out of 10.

Was the above review useful to you?

7 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

A film that takes off -- but forgets how to fly

7/10
Author: Irisheyes0717 from United States
28 February 2007

To put it simply, the opening third of this film is intense. Quite intense. Campbell Scott's Vincent is a tortured young man who only wants to live enough to prepare himself for death. Julia Roberts' Hillary is essentially her Vivian from Pretty Woman (I hope everyone who sees this film is as unimpressed as I was with the shameless allusion to Pretty Woman when Hillary steps off the bus in -- gasp -- a red suit), but it suits the film well. But the passionate acting from Roberts, yes, but mostly Scott absolutely rends one's heart. When Hillary declares that she thought "this guy was going to die," the audience is right there with her. Scott's performance is so rare and so special during these opening minutes because he is not self-pitying. He is aware of his disease, and he's trying to fight it. He's beyond emotional pain, and as he struggles through the physical pain, we start to feel it too. By the time Victor announces that his treatment is finished and he's ready for a vacation, the audience is ready for one too--it's really too much to watch a character we're instantly so attracted to come so close to death so many times.

However, with the change of scenery comes a change of momentum. This is not surprising considering how emotional the opening third of the movie is--I'm not sure any movie could sustain that degree of intensity for the length of a feature film. Sadly though, the couple's time in the beach house becomes, as one critic put it, a kind of music video which features long shots of "endearing" moments between the two main characters. I would have liked to see more *real* discussions, interactions, etc. between the two than the endless close-ups of their pretty faces. The townsfolk are superfluous--essentially they're stock characters, cut-outs of real people that serve no real purpose in the film. Vincent D'Onofrio's Gordon is the most confusing character of all. He seems to have some sort of flirtation with Hillary, but this is never developed, explained, or resolved. A shame, as it could have added more drama to a section of the film that was sorely lacking in any sort of dramatic effect.

The ending of the movie isn't bad, but it never quite recovers the momentum of the earlier section. However, I find that no matter how much I dislike the middle part of the film, I keep thinking about the film as a whole, and really really liking it. If you're prone to it, this film will probably make you cry. If you're not interested in tears, it's still worth watching because at the very least it will make you appreciate how lucky you are to not be going through what Vincent goes through--not having to make the decisions or sacrifices he makes each day.

I recommend watching it at least once and forming your own opinion.

Was the above review useful to you?


Page 1 of 5:[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [Next]

Add another review


Related Links

Plot summary Ratings Awards
Newsgroup reviews External reviews Parents Guide
Plot keywords Main details Your user reviews
Your vote history