6.9/10
3,792
60 user 46 critic

The Luzhin Defence (2000)

PG-13 | | Drama, Romance | 8 September 2000 (UK)
Trailer
2:13 | Trailer

On Disc

at Amazon

Two worlds collide when an eccentric genius falls in love with a strong-willed society beauty.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Knights of the South Bronx (TV Movie 2005)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

The movie is based on the life & times of David MacEnulty who taught schoolchildren of the Bronx Community Elementary School 70 to play at competition level, eventually winning New York ... See full summary »

Director: Allen Hughes
Stars: Ted Danson, Malcolm David Kelley, Keke Palmer
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Garry Kasparov is arguably the greatest chess player who has ever lived. In 1997 he played a chess match against IBM's computer Deep Blue. Kasparov lost the match. This film shows the match... See full summary »

Director: Vikram Jayanti
Stars: Marc Ghannoum, Joel Benjamin, Michael Greengard
Queen to Play (2009)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Middle-aged chambermaid Hélène's newfound obsession with the game of chess leads her to seek the tutelage of a reclusive American expat, transforming both of their ho-hum lives in the ... See full summary »

Director: Caroline Bottaro
Stars: Sandrine Bonnaire, Kevin Kline, Francis Renaud
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A prepubescent chess prodigy refuses to harden himself in order to become a champion like the famous but unlikable Bobby Fischer.

Director: Steven Zaillian
Stars: Joe Mantegna, Ben Kingsley, Max Pomeranc
Mrs Dalloway (1997)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

In 1923 London, socialite Clarissa Dalloway's well-planned party is overshadowed by the return of an old suitor she had known 33 years earlier.

Director: Marleen Gorris
Stars: Vanessa Redgrave, Natascha McElhone, Michael Kitchen
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Depressed businessman Henry Bell and aristocrat Karen Knightly save each other's lives one night when they are ready to jump off London's Tower Bridge. Karen invents a revenge plot - she ... See full summary »

Director: Malcolm Mowbray
Stars: Sam Neill, Helena Bonham Carter, Kristin Scott Thomas
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

During Stalin's reign of terror, Evgenia Ginzburg, a literature professor, was sent to 10 years hard labor in a gulag in Siberia. Having lost everything, and no longer wishing to live, she meets the camp doctor and begins to come back to life.

Director: Marleen Gorris
Stars: Emily Watson, Pam Ferris, Ian Hart
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A young celebrity marriage counselor discovers herself left at the altar of her own highly-publicized wedding. To save face, she accepts an offer from her contractor, who secretly has a crush on her, to step in as groom and marry her.

Director: David Winning
Stars: Larissa Albuquerque, Eileen Barrett, Aaron Craven
Documentary | Biography | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

'Bobby Fischer Against the World' is a documentary feature exploring the tragic and bizarre life of the late chess master Bobby Fischer. The drama of Bobby Fischer's career was undeniable, ... See full summary »

Director: Liz Garbus
Stars: Bobby Fischer, David Edmonds, Anthony Saidy
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Katie Holstrom leaves the farm to become a nurse, but is sidetracked into domestic service, romance, and politics.

Director: H.C. Potter
Stars: Loretta Young, Joseph Cotten, Ethel Barrymore
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Frédéric, a shy small-town man, falls in love with Anne, a middle class woman married to Didier, who cheats on her with top model Barbara. Catherine, a very determined woman, is secretly in... See full summary »

Director: Alexandre Astruc
Stars: Jean-Claude Brialy, Marie-José Nat, Dawn Addams
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A paleontologist is diagnosed with a fatal brain disease and, rather than falling into a depression, explodes into life.

Director: Arto Paragamian
Stars: John Turturro, Oleg Kisseliov, Katherine Borowitz
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Aleksandr Ivanovich 'Sascha' Luzhin
...
Natalia Katkov
...
Vera, Natalia's Mother
...
Leo Valentinov
Christopher Thompson ...
Jean de Stassard
...
Dottore Salvatore Turati
Peter Blythe ...
Ilya
...
Aunt Anna
...
Luzhin's Father
...
Luzhin's Mother
Alexander Hunting ...
Young Aleksandr Luzhin
Alfredo Pea ...
1st Official
Fabio Pasquini ...
2nd Official
Luigi Petrucci ...
Santucci
Carlo Greco ...
Hotel Manager
Edit

Storyline

Set in the late 1920s, The Luzhin Defence tells the story of a shambling, unworldly chess Grand Master who arrives in the Italian Lakes to play the match of his life and unexpectedly finds the love of his life. Discovering his prodigious talent in boyhood overshadowed by his parents' failing marriage, Luzhin's lyrical passion for chess has become his refuge and rendered the real world a phantom. Already matched up by her family to the very suitable Comte de Stassard, when Natalia meets Luzhin, she is drawn to the erratic genius and offers him a glimpse outside of his chess obsession. But it is a world he is not equipped to deal with and his two worlds collide to tragic effect. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

chess | genius | obsession | lake | 1920s | See All (35) »

Taglines:

His love dictates every move.

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sensuality and thematic elements | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

8 September 2000 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

The Luzhin Defense  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$63,203 (USA) (20 April 2001)

Gross:

$1,051,811 (USA) (24 August 2001)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Goofs

In his game as white against an unnamed opponent before the final, Luzhin is shown supposedly checkmating with Rd1-d8, which is an illegal move because his rook at d1 is pinned against his king on h1 by black's rook at c1. See more »

Quotes

Vera: He's defiled you already, hasn't he? That's why you're rushing this ridiculous marriage. You're carrying his child.
See more »

Soundtracks

Waltz 2
from "Suite for Jazz Orchestra No. 2"
Composed by Dmitri Shostakovich (as Dimitri Shostakovich)
Performed by Koninklijk Concertgebouworkest (as Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra)
Conducted by Riccardo Chailly
By permission of Boosey & Hawkes Licensing
Courtesy of Decca Record Label Ltd.
Under license from Universal Special Markets
(p) 1992 Decca Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Definitely One to Check, Mate.
14 September 2000 | by (Belfast, Northern Ireland) – See all my reviews

Part of the enjoyment that I took from this film stemmed from the fact that I knew nothing more about it than that it starred John Turturro and Emily Watson (2 reasons enough to watch), was a period piece and involved chess. Everything that evolved before me was completely unexpected. I shan't, therefore, give away much more. Suffice to say that Turturro is magnificent as an eccentric, obsessive and deeply vulnerable chess genius and Em matches him step for step as the strong-minded woman who is drawn to him. It's about love and obsession, rather than the venerated board game and after drawing me in gradually over the first half hour, became totally compelling. And I defy anyone to second-guess the ending.


12 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Why making movies that are blatantly sexist? pierrejcd
handling of chess pieces ishmaelite
plot questions WheezePuppet
Why Natalia Katkov? sdrockq
Chess pieces gbaileytx
Nabokov's real ending MrCinephile
Discuss The Luzhin Defence (2000) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?