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Tom & Viv (1994)

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In 1915, T.S. (Tom) Eliot and Vivienne Haigh-Wood elope, but her longstanding gynecological and emotional problems disrupt their planned honeymoon. Her father is angry because Tom's poetry ... See full summary »

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Rose Haigh-Wood
...
Maurice Haigh-Wood
Nickolas Grace ...
Geoffrey Bayldon ...
Harwent
...
Louise Purdon
Philip Locke ...
Charles Haigh-Wood
Joanna McCallum ...
Joseph O'Conor ...
John Savident ...
Sir Frederick Lamb
Michael Attwell ...
W.I. Janes
Sharon Bower ...
Secretary
Linda Spurrier ...
Edith Sitwell
Roberta Taylor ...
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Storyline

In 1915, T.S. (Tom) Eliot and Vivienne Haigh-Wood elope, but her longstanding gynecological and emotional problems disrupt their planned honeymoon. Her father is angry because Tom's poetry doesn't bring in enough to live on, but her mother is happy Viv has found a tender and discreet husband. Written by mama.sylvia

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For better, for worse, forever.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for mature thematic elements | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

2 December 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Tom & Viv - nel bene, nel male, per sempre  »

Box Office

Gross:

$538,534 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Rosemary Harris and Willem Dafoe would later appear in the Spider-Man film trilogy directed by Sam Raimi, though they only share scenes in the first film. See more »

Connections

Referenced in I Dreamt Under the Water (2008) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Straightforward biopic of complicated characters
11 June 2013 | by (London, UK) – See all my reviews

Unlike this film adaptation of Michael Hastings' play, there was nothing straightforward about the characters that populate Tom & Viv. Well, with the honourable exception of Tim Dutton's Maurice. The cast of characters are all exceptional, constituting the creative exoticism of the 1920s. Inevitably this means the Bloomsbury Group, though the film is modest in its examination of those personalities themselves, using Ottoline Morrell, Virginia Woolf and Edith Sitwell et al as a backdrop & foil for the highly strung Vivienne Eliot, rather than out- and-out antagonists.

It is Vivienne about whom this film rotates. She appears to be the life force that drives Tom Eliot on in his decisions and actions, if only through her spasmodic mood swings. It's a very difficult role for Miranda Richardson (who is excellent, perfectly cast) to grade; we need a sense of escalation but also to see that her post-menopausal self is significantly different from how she was before Tom. The result is a rich portrayal, dizzying and distracting from the couple's real dynamic. As a narrative I'm sure it's accurate. As drama it's less satisfying.

Willem Dafoe is a nicely taciturn Eliot, with the same strong features as the poet, if not an obvious lookalike. The attention to design detail, especially in costume is quite excellent. Recommended as a broad-brush primer for this important period in TS Eliot's professional development. 6/10


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