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The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama, Thriller  |  25 December 1999 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 129,698 users   Metascore: 76/100
Reviews: 692 user | 200 critic | 35 from Metacritic.com

In late 1950s New York, Tom Ripley, a young underachiever, is sent to Italy to retrieve Dickie Greenleaf, a rich and spoiled millionaire playboy. But when the errand fails, Ripley takes extreme measures.



(novel), (screenplay)
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Nominated for 5 Oscars. Another 10 wins & 75 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Sergio Rubini ...
Inspector Roverini
Alvin MacCarron
Aunt Joan
Fiorello ...
Fausto (as Rosario Fiorello)
Ivano Marescotti ...
Colonnello Verrecchia
Anna Longhi ...
Signora Buffi
Sergeant Baggio


The 1950s. Manhattan lavatory attendant, Tom Ripley, borrows a Princeton jacket to play piano at a garden party. When the wealthy father of a recent Princeton grad chats Tom up, Tom pretends to know the son and is soon offered $1,000 to go to Italy to convince Dickie Greenleaf to return home. In Italy, Tom attaches himself to Dickie and to Marge, Dickie's cultured fiancée, pretending to love jazz and harboring homoerotic hopes as he soaks in luxury. Besides lying, Tom's talents include impressions and forgery, so when the handsome and confident Dickie tires of Tom, dismissing him as a bore, Tom goes to extreme lengths to make Greenleaf's privileges his own. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


It's better to be a fake somebody than a real nobody. See more »


Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, language and brief nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

| |  »




Release Date:

25 December 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Strange Mr. Ripley  »

Box Office


$40,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$12,738,237 (USA) (24 December 1999)


$81,292,135 (USA) (21 April 2000)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Tom Ripley presents Marge with a bottle of perfume from Santa Maria Novella, the same perfumer who concocted Hannibal's telltale fragrance in Hannibal (2001). See more »


When Marge attacks Tom on the pier, his arms go up to fend her off, then he finger-combs his hair, but in the very next shot his arms are straight at his sides. See more »


[first lines]
Tom Ripley: If I could just go back... if I could rub everything out... starting with myself.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening title uses all the adjectives of the complete title before cutting to the final "The Talented Mr. Ripley". See more »


References Persona (1966) See more »


By Johann Sebastian Bach (as J.S. Bach)
Performed by Sally Heath
See more »

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User Reviews

"I'd rather be a fake somebody, than a real nobody..."
6 April 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I'd have to say The_Void really sums up on how amazing this film is and because I find his library of reviews so helpful, I will link them now: http://www.imdb.com/user/ur2248099/comments?order=date&start=0 His review should definitely take precedence over all other Reviews for this film (and probably a lot more). I write this review for the chance that if someone liked one of my opinions, they'd come and see what I thought of this masterpiece.

I can't remember that last time I felt my heart jerked like this in some time. Well that is a lie, I do remember. The last time would have had to of been when I saw: Match Point. So let's get the 'if you liked/hated' bust out of the way and say if you liked Woody Allen's Match Point, I can't see why you wouldn't ultimately like this. Not that they're AT ALL the same, nor do I have some sort of expertise on the matter. I just know the rare feeling Match Point gave me is the same this movie gave me. It sets so many moods and it does it with such finesse you find yourself begging for more and more in a devilish fashion you'll catch yourself many times wondering why you're rooting for Mr. Ripley.

The movie is only 2 hours and 20 minutes or there abouts. But it feels like a lifetime. Not the sort of lifetime when you're waiting in the DMV. The sort of life time where you experience, learn, and think about through your life. Not to say this film is a learning experience. But it IS an experience and it will fill a hole in your film-going life for that thick-plot, character ran, and dark trenching void you may have. I can't think of a film that quite compares in sequence of events, twists, character development, character inclusion quite like this.

Every character is important, every event is important, and everything you think is pretty null and void. Or possibly that is just me.

It should be heavily noted that this film STARTS SLOW, as many have said and probably judged it that way. I'd say it picks up speed around the 15-20 minute mark and it roller coasters from there. And let me tell you, when it accelerates, it seriously doesn't know how to stop and personally, I never wanted it to stop. This is the sort of film where not even the most annoying person can scream at the film, because you're too tight lipped about everything going on and you'll most likely find yourself wanting Ripley to keep going. And when I say Ripley, I really mean the movie.

And the movie doesn't stop, it keeps going. Even after it's over, you will be doing a mental tango of all the information you have received and trying to sort out all the pieces. And trust me, there are pieces. If you go to watch this film to just watch a 90's flick, you're doing it wrong. You will probably find the movie a flop of just dark moments led by lies and deceit. (Which it really is). But to those who went to watch this film because we wanted to know why there was so much mixed hype about this 1999 film, we should have all noticed there were the smallest bits of puzzle pieces and the biggest amounts of twists that really made this film what it is.

I don't even like Matt Damon, I personally have a biased grudged towards the guy and his movies. But I'd have to say, it's tough to choose between his performances here and Good Will Hunting. He, along with the entire cast will tug at heart strings you never thought you had. There are the strings for romance, thrillers, and horror. These strings are the one's collecting dust and sometimes never see the light of day for a life time. It's rare to come across a film that seems to have everything and goes about it like it's nothing, like it doesn't even seem to care if you're watching or not, because it all is going to happen with or without you. It's truly it's own living, breathing, and dark entity.

Watch this film if you want a film that will bake in your brain for the days, weeks, maybe months to come. It's not to late to bring this movie back up into lunch-time conversation in the new century.

18 of 21 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Did he ever feel anything? (Vulnerability, weakness, etc.) Lily1357
why did Tom not kill Meredith? mikeos3
Freddie - most watchable hateable character I've seen in a long time daniel-grigg
Did Tom kill Dickie's mistress? ericjstacey
When Dickie sent Tom sightseeing... iremb13
The Italian Policeman asking Tom was he homosexual - why? Marsha_CutiePie
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