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Death Becomes Her (1992)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Fantasy, Horror | 31 July 1992 (USA)
When a woman learns of an immortality treatment, she sees it as a way to outdo her long-time rival.


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Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 12 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Psychologist (as Alaina Reed Hall)
Vivian Adams
William Frankfather ...
Mr. Franklin
Opening Man
Opening Woman
Second Man


In 1978, in Broadway, the decadent and narcissist actress Madeline Ashton is performing Songbird, based on Tennessee Williams' Sweet Bird of Youth. Then she receives her rival Helen Sharp, who is an aspiring writer, and her fiancé Ernest Menville, who is a plastic surgeon, in her dressing-room. Soon Menville calls off his commitment with Helen and marries Madeline. Seven years later, Helen is obese in a psychiatric hospital and obsessed in seeking revenge on Madeline. In 1992, the marriage of Madeline and Menville is finished and he is no longer a surgeon but an alcoholic caretaker. Out of the blue, they are invited to a party where Helen will release her novel Forever Young and Madeline goes to a beauty shop. The owner gives a business card of the specialist in rejuvenation Lisle Von Rhuman to her. When the envious Madeline sees Helen thin in a perfect shape, she decides to seek out Lisle and buys a potion to become young again. Further, she advises that Madeline must take care of ... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


In one small bottle... The fountain of youth. The secret of eternal life. The power of an ancient potion. Sometimes it works... sometimes it doesn't. See more »


Comedy | Fantasy | Horror

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some nudity and off-color humor | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

31 July 1992 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La muerte le sienta bien  »

Box Office


$55,000,000 (estimated)


$58,422,650 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The potion is depicted in the film as a pink ethereal essence. In the original script however, it was described as a thick gray mercury-like fluid. See more »


Just after a drugged Madeline falls face-down in her dinner (according to Helen's plan), all the candle flames are wafted by the rapid passage of the camera up the table. See more »


[after seeing Mad]
Helen Sharp: It's alive!
[Cut line]
Helen Sharp: And it's beautiful...
See more »


Referenced in The Scorpion King: Rise of a Warrior (2008) See more »


Written by Geoff Aymar
Lyrics by Martin Donovan & David Koepp
Arranged by William Ross
Performed by Meryl Streep (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

It just gets funnier every time I watch it
20 October 2003 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

I love this movie and have watched it more than any other film I own. What makes it for me is the subtle face acting of the two leads whose comic timing is perfect. Meryl Streep and Goldie Hawn have never been so good (plus this is the only film in which Bruce Willis doesn't do his trademark smirk even once).

Every role is played to perfection and the script is a comedy work of art.

I won't bother defending it to those people who need their jokes hammered home to them by comedy actors whose only way of getting a laugh is to gurn and fart. Each to their own.

166 of 189 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Why No Blu Ray or Widescreen Love? bazerker2003
Reboot edwie-594-19044
6.2 is an offensive score! mamy2237
The floating nuns? XDumbledork
How much was did the potion cost? How much was that check for? ajtaylor82
Why didn't Lisle's body rot? heidegg-1
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