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Magnolia (1999)

R | | Drama | 7 January 2000 (USA)
An epic mosaic of interrelated characters in search of love, forgiveness, and meaning in the San Fernando Valley.
Popularity
1,431 ( 106)

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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 28 wins & 51 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Sir Edmund William Godfrey / Young Pharmacy Kid
Genevieve Zweig ...
Mrs. Godfrey
Mark Flannagan ...
Joseph Green
...
Stanley Berry
Rod McLachlan ...
Daniel Hill
...
Firefighter
...
Delmer Darion
Raymond 'Big Guy' Gonzales ...
Reno Security Guard
...
Craig Hansen
...
Forensic Scientist
...
Sydney Barringer
...
Arthur Barringer
Frank Elmore ...
1958 Detective
John Kraft Seitz ...
1958 Policeman
Cory Buck ...
Young Boy
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Storyline

24 hours in L.A.; it's raining cats and dogs. Two parallel and intercut stories dramatize men about to die: both are estranged from a grown child, both want to make contact, and neither child wants anything to do with dad. Earl Partridge's son is a charismatic misogynist; Jimmy Gator's daughter is a cokehead and waif. A mild and caring nurse intercedes for Earl, reaching the son; a prayerful and upright beat cop meets the daughter, is attracted to her, and leads her toward a new calm. Meanwhile, guilt consumes Earl's young wife, while two whiz kids, one grown and a loser and the other young and pressured, face their situations. The weather, too, is quirky. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Things fall down. People look up. And when it rains, it pours.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

7 January 2000 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mag·no'li·a  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$37,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$193,604 (USA) (17 December 1999)

Gross:

$22,450,975 (USA) (12 May 2000)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

New Line wanted to push the film as a Tom Cruise movie but Paul Thomas Anderson refused, saying it was an ensemble piece. He ended up designing the poster and editing the trailer himself. See more »

Goofs

In the beginning sequence involving the scuba diver in the tree, specifically when they are in the casino and the pilot says "All I need is a two." The dealer (scuba diver) lays down an eight of diamonds, but it is the only card in front of the pilot. In this style of blackjack, the player holds the first two cards in his hand. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: In the New York Herald, November 26, year 1911, there is an account of the hanging of three men. They died for the murder of Sir Edmund William Godfrey; Husband, Father, Pharmacist and all around gentle-man resident of: Greenberry Hill, London. He was murdered by three vagrants whose motive was simple robbery. They were identified as: Joseph Green, Stanley Berry, and Daniel Hill. Green, Berry, Hill. And I Would Like To Think This was Only A Matter Of Chance. As reported in the Reno...
See more »

Crazy Credits

As the credit for Robert Downey Sr. scrolls up the screen, the words "(a prince)" appear next to his name. See more »

Connections

Referenced in MythBusters: Scuba Diver/Car Capers (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Hungarian Dance No. 6
(uncredited)
Written by Johannes Brahms
Performed by New World Harmonica Trio
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

The best film I've seen this year!!!
19 December 1999 | by (New Jersey) – See all my reviews

The first encounter that I ever had with Paul Thomas Anderson was through "Boogie Nights." I admit, I first saw it because of I heard that it was about the porn industry. However, I was surprised to discover an intimate look into the damaged lives of several very interesting, well-developed characters. I also was delighted to have found a new and exciting director whose career and films I will be sure to follow. Anderson's cinematic flamboyance, technical bravura, and inspired storytelling ability make him a talent who is emblematic of the resurrgence in creative and dynamic filmmaking that has occured in this past year. Like Fincher(Fight Club), Mendes(American Beauty), Jonze(Being John Malkovich), and the Wachowski Brothers(The Matrix), Anderson has created a truly unique film that stretches the boundaries of cinema.

Many who I saw the movie with grumbled repeatedly about it's length. Clocking in at about three hours and ten minutes, "Magnolia" is long. Even if you are as strong an advocate of the film as I am, you will think that it is long. I really had to go to the bathroom the whole time. But I did not want to miss a single second of Mr. Anderson's fascinating opus. The prologue is very well done, doing a good job of drawing in the viewer. It makes an interesting commentary on coincidence, wjich segues nicely into the rest of the film. The first half hour of the film is the most wonderfully done I have ever seen. Just as Anderson does in "Boogie Nights," the prodigy weaves a fast-paced web of intrigue, flashing tidbits of the many characters' lives that leave the viewer thirsty for more. The rhythm of the film slows down for the bulk of it, as we learn more and more and become more intimately involved in the lives of the wonderfully flawed characters. The film seems to build and build into something bigger than itself. In a way, that is the main flaw of it, but also the beauty of it. Anderson's ambitiousness is huge, but I wouldn't call him an overreacher.

This film is so full of great performances. It is probably the best ensemble piece that I have witnessed. There has been much Oscar buzz on Tom Cruise's behalf, but I honestly believe that there are so many Oscar worthy performances in this film that it is a futile effort to mention them all.

Particularly strong in the movie is the editing, which allows for the interconnected stories of the various characters to be placed parallel to each other very smoothly. The cinematography is wonderful, obviously influenced by Scorcese. I really don't believe that this film could have been as good as it was if it were any shorter. Seeing it is truly an experience. I was almost sad to see it end.


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