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The Remains of the Day (1993)

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A butler who sacrificed body and soul to service in the years leading up to World War II realizes too late how misguided his loyalty was to his lordly employer.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
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Popularity
2,748 ( 551)
Nominated for 8 Oscars. Another 15 wins & 24 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Haycraft ...
Auctioneer
...
Jack Lewis
...
...
Caroline Hunt ...
Landlady
...
Lord Darlington
...
William Stevens
Paula Jacobs ...
Mrs. Mortimer, the cook
...
Charlie, Head Footman
...
George, Second Footman
...
Housemaid (as Abigail Harrison)
...
Spencer
Peter Cellier ...
Sir Leonard Bax
Peter Halliday ...
Canon Tufnell
...
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Storyline

A rule bound head butler's world of manners and decorum in the household he maintains is tested by the arrival of a housekeeper who falls in love with him in post-WWI Britain. The possibility of romance and his master's cultivation of ties with the Nazi cause challenge his carefully maintained veneer of servitude. Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for themes | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

| |

Release Date:

19 November 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Lo que queda del día  »

Box Office

Budget:

$11,500,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$22,954,968 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Butler James Stevens, portrayed in the film by Anthony Hopkins, examines his 'life with the eye of hindsight as he embarks on a journey to the seaside town where he hopes to catch up with Miss Kenton ('Emma Thompson') and to perhaps engage her again as the housekeeper of Darlington Hall. "Like most road stories, it's a journey into himself," explained Kazuo Ishiguro, who wrote the prize-winning novel of the same name on which the film is based, "a journey into his past". Ishiguro notes: "Travel gives Stevens a certain perspective that allows him, for fleeting moments, to drop the defenses of self-deception and see through some of the stories he has told himself all his life about who he is and what he has done". In the 1930s, Stevens was proud to serve his master's cause. As the years pass and new, more accurate information becomes available, Stevens' pride diminishes. Ishiguro adds: "Lord Darlington is used as a pawn by the Nazis because he yields to a common aristocratic urge to contribute something large to the world. He is somebody who starts off with very good and noble impulses, but because of a certain kind of naiveté, which almost all of us would share, he becomes a pawn". See more »

Goofs

When Mr. Stevens is serving at the banquet, he stands behind Lord Darlington's chair empty-handed. Then he suddenly leaves the room to receive news of his father's death, but at the end of this scene he now has a decanter in his hand, which isn't used until the next scene when the guests have left the banquet, and have been in another room for quite some time. See more »

Quotes

Father: There was this English butler out in India. One day, he goes in the dining room and what does he see under the table ? A tiger. Not turning a hair, he goes straight to the drawing room. "Hum, hum. Excuse me, my lord," and whispering, so as not to upset the ladies : "I'm very sorry my lord. There appears to be a tiger in the dining room. Perhaps his Lordship will permit use of the twelve bores ?" They go on drinking their tea. And then, there's three gunshots. Well, they don't think nothing of ...
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Connections

Referenced in Nostalgia Critic: Bebe's Kids (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Blue Moon
Composed by Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart
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User Reviews

Outstanding in Every Possible Area
9 January 2001 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Excellent film that was overlooked in 1993 due to the dominance of "Schindler's List", "The Remains of the Day" is an exquisite film which examines the relationship between two servants in England (Anthony Hopkins and Emma Thompson, both Oscar-nominated). They both definitely have feelings for each other, but both seem to be bound by duty, honor, and society. Hopkins is not the type of person who shares his inner-most feelings with anyone and Thompson wants to share her hidden love for Hopkins, but is frightened for various reasons. The fact that the film is told during flashbacks which took place just before the involvement of England in World War II just makes everything that much more interesting and heart-wrenching. During the present-day of the movie it appears that Hopkins and Thompson will finally proclaim their love for one another, but in the end that is not even a real certainty. Ruth Prawer Jhabvala's adaptation of the novel is exceptional and James Ivory's direction has rarely been better or more focused. With all this said, it is Hopkins and Thompson that dominate the action and make "The Remains of the Day" one of the best films of the 1990s. 5 stars out of 5.


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