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Ed Wood (1994)

7.9
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 123,329 users   Metascore: 70/100
Reviews: 399 user | 135 critic | 19 from Metacritic.com

The mostly true story of the legendary director of awful movies and his strange group of friends and actors.

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Title: Ed Wood (1994)

Ed Wood (1994) on IMDb 7.9/10

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Won 2 Oscars. Another 23 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Brent Hinkley ...
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George 'The Animal' Steele ...
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Clive Rosengren ...
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Storyline

The life of 'Edward D. Wood Jr.', hailed as the worst director (of Plan 9 from Outer Space (1959), Glen or Glenda (1953) and Bride of the Monster (1955)) of all time. Written by Rogerio Santos

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Movies were his passion. Women were his inspiration. Angora sweaters were his weakness. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 September 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ed Wood  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$5,887,457 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The musical cue when Ed goes to help the suicidal Lugosi (when Lugosi falls in the chair) and Ed is repeatedly watching the film clip of Lugosi smelling the flower is an adaptation of the 2nd Act theme from Swan Lake by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, as adapted for the Main Title of Bela Lugosi's Dracula (1931) by Heinz Roemheld. It was also used as the main title for Boris Karloff's original The Mummy (1932). See more »

Goofs

Ed Wood and Orson Welles never met. See more »

Quotes

Edward D. Wood, Jr.: [talking on phone] Bunny? We're making another movie! Yes. I got the Baptist Church of Beverly Hills to put up the cash!
Paul Marco: [knocking on door] Ed, I got the Lugosi doubles outside!
Edward D. Wood, Jr.: Bunny, I gotta go...
[Ed opens the door to find a short man, a fat man, and a Chinese man]
Edward D. Wood, Jr.: [sighs, shakes head] He's too short, he's too... tall, he's... just not going to work.
Paul Marco: Well, Ed. I was thinking like when Bela played Fu Manchu...
Edward D. Wood, Jr.: [Pulls Paul aside]
[wispering]
Edward D. Wood, Jr.: Paul, that was Karloff.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the opening credits, Johnny Depp's name appears in capital letters, followed by the title - both of them alternating in black and white, as though being illuminated by lightning - and the rest of the main cast are credited on tombstones. Supporting cast and crew names appear in white against dark, rainy sets featuring meant-to-look-low-budget effects such as a giant tentacle and flying saucers in outer space. See more »


Soundtracks

KUBA MAMBO
Written and Performed by Dámaso Pérez Prado
Courtesy of the RCA Records Label of BMG Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Kinship with a Fringie
27 June 1999 | by (Greenville SC) – See all my reviews

The theatre wasn't exactly filling up fast: so far my husband, a friend and myself were the only ones seated. Just before the movie began, a young couple walked in. And shortly after the movie began, they walked out. I wonder if they asked for their money back. I hope they didn't get it.

The movie was ED WOOD, Tim Burton's homage to trash-film director Edward D. Wood Jr., which only played in Greenville for two weeks and did not show up at the second-run movie houses. Apparently no one wanted to see it. Their loss.

But perhaps I'm being too hard on those who don't appreciate the subtle nuances of Eddie Wood's movies. To me, Eddie was a glittering bead hanging on Hollywood's lunatic fringe. However, Eddie, a transvestite who often directed his masterpieces wearing high heels and an angora sweater, was not exactly your mama's director. He was no Frank Tashlin, who tried to make Jayne Mansfield respectable in THE GIRL CAN'T HELP IT. He was no Norman Taurog, who made Elvis look like a dork in countless girls-cars-and-guitars flicks. He wasn't even Russ Meyer, whose exploitation films are legendary in their trashiness. No, Eddie just never seemed to get a break. He wanted to be Orson Welles. He didn't even find the measure of fame accorded to Orson Bean! He remained a pathetic outcast, forever a fringie.

Perhaps it is appropriate that Johnny Depp was chosen to portray Eddie Wood. Depp has a long history of playing outcasts and fringies -- Edward Scissorhands, Gilbert Grape, Hunter Thompson. Depp makes it clear that Eddie's angora-covered heart was in the right place. He worked hard on his scripts, he gave important roles to spectacularly talentless actors like Vampira, wrestler Tor Johnson and Eddie's own main squeeze, Dolores Fuller. And he was very kind to the drug-addled has-been Bela Lugosi, even dissuading the drunken Drac from committing suicide (which wasn't entirely altruistic, perhaps, as Lugosi had threatened to take Eddie with him). Depp makes Eddie appear almost human.

Depp's portrayal is just one of several that are outstanding: George "The Animal" Steele as Tor Johnson, Jeffrey Jones as Criswell, Vincent D'Onofrio in his cameo of Orson Welles and Bill Murray as Bunny Breckinridge -- one of the rare times Murray has immersed himself in his character and not been merely Bill Murray with someone else's name. Also delightful is a brief appearance by organist Korla Pandit, 1950's television personality once billed "The Prince of the Wurlitzer."

However, all the performances in ED WOOD are overshadowed by Academy-award winner Martin Landau as Bela Lugosi. For those enough old enough to remember Landau in TV's "Mission: Impossible," it perhaps isn't surprising that Landau was able to hide so completely behind a spookily accurate makeup job; seeing Landau's Lugosi watch himself on television was eerie because Landau looked enough like Lugosi to make it seem real.

The film ends on a high note, which Eddie's life didn't -- he died in his sleep, watching a ball game, just a few days after he'd been evicted from his apartment.

ED WOOD is not a family film. Some of the language is strong, drugs and drink are abundant, and many of the characters are a shade on the bizarre side. It might be hard to explain to one's children why this apparently virile man loves to raid his girlfriend's closets.

Unfortunately, ED WOOD hasn't exactly burned up the box office. Perhaps it is because so few people can relate to someone as weird as Eddie, with his terrible stories about men in angora sweaters, killer octopi, blank-eyed wrestler slaves and, the piece de resistance, aliens with eight failed plans to take over the universe. I believe Eddie himself felt like those aliens, which is why, viewing PLAN NINE FROM OUTER SPACE, he said, "This is the one I'll be remembered by." And perhaps that very weirdness made the story appealing to me. Having lived as a misfit and outcast, working hard all my life to reach a goal that has remained elusive, I can, to quote someone I don't care for, feel Eddie's pain. It's too late for him, but perhaps there's hope for me yet ...


108 of 137 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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