6.2/10
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148 user 117 critic

Vanity Fair (2004)

PG-13 | | Drama | 1 September 2004 (USA)
Growing up poor in London, Becky Sharp defies her poverty-stricken background and ascends the social ladder alongside her best friend, Amelia.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »

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From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
2 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Angelica Mandy ...
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Ms. Green (as Lillette Dubey)
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John Franklyn-Robbins ...
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Gambler
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Storyline

The British Empire flowers; exotic India colors English imaginations. Becky Sharp, the orphaned daughter of a painter and a singer, leaves a home for girls to be a governess, armed with pluck, a keen wit, good looks, fluent French, and an eye for social advancement. Society tries its best to keep her from climbing. An episodic narrative follows her for 20 years, through marriage, Napoleonic wars, a child, loyalty to a school friend, the vicissitudes of the family whose daughters she instructed, and attention from a bored marquess who collected her father's paintings. Honesty tempers her schemes. No aristocrat she, nor bourgeois, just spirited, intelligent, and irrepressible. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

All's fair in love & war. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sensuality/partial nudity and a brief violent image | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

1 September 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Vanidad  »

Box Office

Budget:

$23,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$6,268,925 (USA) (3 September 2004)

Gross:

$16,123,851 (USA) (5 November 2004)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the early 1970s Stanley Kubrick wanted to direct an adaptation of this book, but found it to be too big to make it into a three-hour film. He instead made Barry Lyndon (1975). See more »

Goofs

During the outdoor gathering at Vauxhall, George Osborne and Joseph Sedley ride in the row boat. A cable slices through the water, pulling the boat from the front. See more »

Quotes

Amelia Sedley: [the clock strikes midnight at the Waterloo ball] George, shouldn't we rest now? There may be a battle in the morning.
George Osborne: Go to bed if you're tired, my dear. Sweet dreams.
[Dances with Becky]
George Osborne: Are you tired, you wicked woman?
Becky Sharp: [laughing] I'm not a child, Captain Osborne. Not like your brainless little Amelia. Ambition doesn't tire. Evil never sleeps.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Before the credits start rolling the word "Alvida" (goodbye) appears in Urdu script. Beneath it is the following dedication: for our beloved Ammy Kulsum Alibhai 1927-2003 See more »

Connections

Referenced in 2011 MTV Movie Awards (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

The Polonaise
Music by Johann Nepomuk Hummel (as Hummel)
Arranged by Terry Davies
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User Reviews

 
Ironically, 'Vanity Fair' is a very fitting title for this inexpressive and characterless remake of a true classic.
22 January 2005 | by (Ireland) – See all my reviews

I had the somewhat unfortunate job of accompanying two teenage girls to my viewing of Vanity Fair. As any cinema attendee will know, there is nothing more irritating then two talkative teens, with the attention span of goldfish, chatting throughout the entire film. All their interest was well gone by the time Gabriel Byrne strutted onto the screen, and although it pains me to admit it, my interest had slowly subsided with theirs.

Although beautiful shots, skillful performances and magnificently designed sets came bountiful, there was still one vast absence that was so dearly missed. This was the charm, the charisma and the fascination that connects the audience with the characters. The scenes didn't fuse well and felt shabbily thrown together. Acknowledged events came as surprises and characters lost their appeal and distinctiveness. Becky Sharp, played by Reese Witherspoon, became aggravating and tedious, and any sympathy, understanding or patience for that matter, was lost to a plot so drawn and witless, it made 'Charlie's angels' seem thought provoking.

The charm and the magic of the William Makepeace Thackeray novel were forgotten in this drawn and soulless remake of a classic. Worth the watch for the costumes and set alone, but expect nothing more.


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