6.6/10
188,931
554 user 119 critic

The Beach (2000)

Twenty-something Richard travels to Thailand and finds himself in possession of a strange map. Rumours state that it leads to a solitary beach paradise, a tropical bliss - excited and intrigued, he sets out to find it.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (novel)
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1,025 ( 195)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Daniel York ...
Hustler
Patcharawan Patarakijjanon ...
Hotel Receptionist
...
...
Étienne
...
Somboon Phutaroth ...
Cleaning Woman
Weeratham 'Norman' Wichairaksakui ...
Detective
Jak Boon ...
Travel Agent
...
Zeph
Jerry Swindall ...
Sammy
Krongthong Thampradith ...
Woman with Key
Apichart Chusakul ...
Senior Farmer (as Abhijati 'Muek' Jusakul)
Sanya 'Gai' Cheunjit ...
Farmer
Kaneung 'Nueng' Kenia ...
Farmer
Edit

Storyline

Garland's novel centers on a young nicotine-addicted traveler named Richard, an avid pop-culture buff with a particular love for video games and Vietnam War movies. While at a hotel in Bangkok, he finds a map left by his strange, whacked-out neighbor, who just committed suicide. The map supposedly leads to a legendary island paradise where some other wayward souls have settled. Written by Mike Arndt <clayton@hooked.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It really was some kind of paradise See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, some strong sexuality, language and drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

| | | |

Release Date:

11 February 2000 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La playa  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£2,418,321 (UK) (11 February 2000)

Gross:

$39,778,599 (USA) (5 May 2000)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The island was initially chosen by location scouts for Fox Studios not because of its astounding natural beauty, but because of its potential for a landscaping redevelopment. The script called for a clearing on the beach large enough to play football, so they bulldozed a large swath of the native trees and vegetation. They also planted a hundred non-native palm trees just to get the right look, essentially introducing an exotic species to the island that could take over and effectively change the habitat forever. While the whole thing was an eyesore for the locals, the real damage didn't come until the filmmakers left the island. The usual seasonal storms hit the beach, but this time the sand dunes didn't have the protection of their natural vegetation. They collapsed immediately and washed out to sea, damaging the fragile coral reef on their way out.

Environmentalists were outraged and accused the filmmakers of bribing the Thai government to get around legal requirements; for instance, the National Park Act, which was specifically designed to prevent this exact sort of thing. Allegedly Fox donated the equivalent of $100,000 to the Royal Forestry Development in Thailand; the normal fee for filming on the island is less than one percent of that. Afterwards, they were allowed the freedom to remodel the island as much as they pleased after the money changed hands.

Environmentalists responded by taking legal action against Fox Studios, its local coordinator Santa International, and the Thai government officials. Seven years later, the court penalized the film company for unnecessary ecological destruction and ordered them to repair all environmental damage to Maya Beach, which is much more than just planting a few trees. They are also expected to rebuild the marine life population that was wiped out.

In a fitting twist, the message of the movie is that trying to preserve an untouched paradise is futile. See more »

Goofs

Keaty explains the rules of cricket and asks if anyone still doesn't understand. Richard and Étienne both raise their left hands. The camera angle changes; when Richard is shown again, he is raising his right arm instead. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Richard: My name is Richard. So what else do you need to know? Stuff about my family, or where I'm from? None of that matters. Not once you cross the ocean and cut yourself loose, looking for something more beautiful, something more exciting and yes, I admit, something more dangerous. So after eighteen hours in the back of an airplane, three dumb movies, two plastic meals, six beers and absolutely no sleep, I finally touch down; in Bangkok.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Siskel & Ebert: Episode dated 12 February 2000 (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Out of Control
Written by Tom Rowlands (as Thomas Rowlands), Ed Simons (as Edmund Simons) and Bernard Sumner
Performed by The Chemical Brothers
Courtesy of Virgin Records Limited/Astralwerks
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Unfairly Panned; A Good Movie
25 October 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Here is another of those films that got panned by critics all over the place, but I liked the movie and thought it was unfairly criticized.

Two things are not up for debate: the film is entertaining and the cinematography is gorgeous.

Leonardo DiCaprio's lead character is not particularly likable, but that's nothing new for him. He's good at playing the boyish, cocky immature type. He's also good at narration, which he provides here, as he has in a number of other films. In fact, I wish there were more of it in here.

French actress Virginie Ledoyen is a new face to me, and a pretty one. I found her intriguing, and not just because of her face Actually, all the characters were pretty darn interesting in this film and you get a varied group.

The scenery from Thailand is magnificent. By the way, "the beach" that's in this film really exists, just as it's seen here. The story is interesting, too, for the full two hours. My only complaint was that they might have toned down the language, particularly with all the f-words.

Don't listen to those national critics who blasted this. I think you'll be entertained.


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