Hilary and Jackie (1998)

R  |   |  Biography, Drama, Music  |  5 February 1999 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 8,538 users   Metascore: 78/100
Reviews: 110 user | 68 critic | 21 from Metacritic.com

The tragic story of world renowned classic cellist Jacqueline du Pré, as told from the point of view of her sister, flautist Hilary du Pré-Finzi.



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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 4 wins & 22 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Hilary Du Pré
Daniel Barenboim
Kiffer Finzi
Derek Du Pré
Iris Du Pré
Piers Du Pré
Cello Teacher
Auriol Evans ...
Young Jackie
Young Hilary (as Keeley Flanders)
Grace Chatto ...
Nyree Dawn Porter ...
Maggie McCarthy ...
Professor Bentley
Anthony Smee ...
BBC Nabob


British sisters Hilary du Pré and Jacqueline du Pré are both talented musicians, Hilary a flautist, Jackie a cellist. With regard to their musical prowess, they have always had a friendly competitive nature with each other, fueled in large part by the want of their pianist mother, Iris, for them to achieve musical greatness. But underlying this friendliness is a deep desire to be truly better than the other. Despite or perhaps in part because of her flamboyant performance style, the younger Jackie emerges from the shadows of older Hilary's more triumphant childhood successes to become the renowned musician in the family. Although both continue with their music and both end up marrying (Hilary to Kiffer Finzi, and Jackie to pianist Daniel Barenboim), Hilary focuses on her home life, whereas Jackie focuses on her career. A seemingly odd request by Jackie to Hilary is later understood, but Hilary's agreement to that request demonstrates the true nature of their loving but unusual ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The true story of two sisters who shared a passion, a madness and a man. See more »


Biography | Drama | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

5 February 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hilary y Jackie  »

Box Office


$7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$92,956 (USA) (1 January 1999)


$4,874,838 (USA) (23 April 1999)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The lines, "...O body swayed to music, O brightening glance, / How can we know the dancer from the dance?", are from the poem, 'Among School Children' by William Butler Yeats. See more »


In the Russian newspaper the title above the Jackie's photo states "About Lenin, about October" See more »


Jackie du Pré: I'll play the fucking triangle, I just want to make music again!
See more »


Featured in At the Movies: Rachel Griffiths in Conversation (2012) See more »


Sonata for Violoncello and Piano in A Major
Written by César Franck
Excerpts played as part of the score
See more »

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User Reviews

an interesting study of a sibling relationship
27 July 1999 | by (Austintown, Ohio) – See all my reviews

Hilary and Jackie is a film that can be appreciated on many levels. The performances of Ms. Griffith and Ms. Watson as the title characters were superb, but so were the actors that played the parents and husbands, and the two young actresses playing them as girls were terrific. All the people in the film were interesting. The film gives insight into the life of a musical genius with its rewards and triumphs as well as conflicts and sacrifices. There is also a psychological aspect at the heart of this film. From the beginning the two sisters have a bond, almost a symbiotic relationship, yet there is also intense competition. To make the presentation even more interesting the relationship is presented in two "acts", the first told from Hilary's perspective and the second from Jackie's. Whose is more real? Does it make a difference? The final scenes as MS is taking its toll on Jackie are gripping. Both actresses were deserving of their nominations. This was great entertainment! Three and half stars!!!

9 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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