MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 3,312 this week

Wit (2001)

TV Movie  -   -  Drama  -  24 March 2001 (USA)
8.2
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.2/10 from 6,736 users  
Reviews: 116 user | 18 critic

A renowned professor is forced to reassess her life when she is diagnosed with terminal ovarian cancer.

Director:

Writers:

(play), (teleplay), 1 more credit »
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

On Disc

at Amazon

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 44 titles
created 31 Aug 2011
 
a list of 40 titles
created 10 May 2012
 
a list of 47 titles
created 18 Oct 2012
 
a list of 31 titles
created 3 months ago
 
a list of 40 titles
created 1 week ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Wit" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Wit (TV Movie 2001)

Wit (TV Movie 2001) on IMDb 8.2/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Wit.

User Polls

Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. Another 9 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A highly-evolved planet, whose denizens feel no emotion and reproduce by cloning, plans to take over Earth from the inside by sending an operative, fashioned with a humming, mechanical ... See full summary »

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: Garry Shandling, Annette Bening, John Goodman
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A man joins the political campaign of a smooth-operator candidate for president of the USA.

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: John Travolta, Emma Thompson, Kathy Bates
Gilda Live (1980)
Comedy | Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A filmed version of the Broadway show starring comedienne Gilda Radner, complete with the characters she made famous on the TV show "Saturday Night Live."

Directors: Mike Nichols, Lorne Michaels
Stars: Gilda Radner, Don Novello, Paul Shaffer
Biloxi Blues (1988)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A group of young recruits go through boot camp during the Second World War in Biloxi Mississippi. From the play by Neil Simon.

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: Matthew Broderick, Christopher Walken, Matt Mulhern
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Substance-addicted Hollywood actress Suzanne Vale is on the skids. After a spell at a detox centre her film company insists as a condition of continuing to employ her that she live with her... See full summary »

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: Meryl Streep, Shirley MacLaine, Dennis Quaid
The Fortune (1975)
Comedy | Crime | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Two bumbling hustlers in the 1920s attempt to gain the fortune of an heiress. Nothing will stop them . not even murder.

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: Stockard Channing, Jack Nicholson, Warren Beatty
Drama | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Dr Jake Terrell, who has been training a pair of dolphins for many years, has had a breakthrough. He has taught his dolphins to speak and understand English, although they do have a limited... See full summary »

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: George C. Scott, Trish Van Devere, Paul Sorvino
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Henry is a lawyer who survives a shooting only to find he cannot remember anything. If that weren't enough, Henry also has to recover his speech and mobility, in a life he no longer fits ... See full summary »

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: Harrison Ford, Annette Bening, Michael Haley
Angels in America (TV Mini-Series 2003)
Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

Playwright Tony Kushner adapts his political epic about the AIDS crisis during the mid-eighties, around a group of separate but connected individuals.

Stars: Al Pacino, Meryl Streep, Emma Thompson
Silkwood (1983)
Biography | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The story of Karen Silkwood, a metallurgy worker at a plutonium processing plant who was purposefully contaminated, psychologically tortured and possibly murdered to prevent her from exposing blatant worker safety violations at the plant.

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: Meryl Streep, Kurt Russell, Cher
Heartburn (1986)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

An autobiographical look at the breakup of Ephron's marriage to Carl "All the President's Men" Bernstein that was also a best-selling novel. The Ephron character, Rachel is a food writer at... See full summary »

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: Meryl Streep, Jack Nicholson, Jeff Daniels
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The concurrent sexual lives of best friends Jonathan and Sandy are presented, those lives which are affected by the sexual mores of the time and their own temperament, especially in ... See full summary »

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Candice Bergen, Ann-Margret
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Dr. Harvey Kelekian
...
Evelyn 'E.M.' Ashford
...
Susie Monahan
...
Dr. Jason Posner
Harold Pinter ...
Mr. Bearing (Vivian's Father)
Rebecca Laurie ...
Vivian aged 5
Su Lin Looi ...
Nurse (as Su-Lin Looi)
...
Technician 1
Miquel Brown ...
Technician 2
Hari Dhillon ...
Fellow 1 (as Harry Dillon)
...
Fellow 2
Alex Gregor ...
Fellow 3
Lachele Carl ...
Fellow 4
...
Student 1
Edit

Storyline

Based on the Margaret Edson play, Vivian Bearing is a literal, hardnosed English professor who has been diagnosed with terminal ovarian cancer. During the story, she reflects on her reactions to the cycle the cancer takes, the treatments, and significant events in her life. The people that watch over her are Jason Posner, who only finds faith in being a doctor; Susie Monahan, a nurse with a human side that is the only one in the hospital that cares for Vivian's condition; and Dr. Kelekian, the head doctor who just wants results no matter what they are. Written by Pat McCurry <laraspal00@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It appears to be a matter of life and death.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some thematic material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

24 March 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

W;t  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

To prepare for the role, Emma Thompson shaved her head, following in the footsteps of Kathleen Chalfant and Judith Light, who performed the role of Vivian Bearing on stage. See more »

Goofs

The size of Vivian's and Susie's popsicles. See more »

Quotes

Vivian Bearing: Published *and* perished.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The 59th Annual Golden Globe Awards (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

2nd Movement
from Gorecki's Symphony No. 3
(Symphony of Sorrowful Songs)
Written by Henryk Mikolaj Górecki (as Henryk Gorecki)
Courtesy of Nonesuch Records
By Arrangement with Warner Special Products
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Emma Thompson Is Extraordinary
31 July 2002 | by (Salem, Oregon) – See all my reviews

First of all, be advised, this is a tough film to watch; but also know that if you choose to do so, you will be rewarded with an experience that is invaluable and unforgettable, and in ways that transcend mere cinematic satisfaction. There is no mystery here, no secrets nor allegories. Indeed, the subject matter is made succinctly evident in the first words you hear, spoken by Dr. Kelekian (Christopher Lloyd) to Vivian Bearing (Emma Thompson): `You have cancer.' And so begins `Wit,' directed by Mike Nichols, a film that will claim you emotionally and take you to a place of eternal night-- a region, in fact, wherein even the most intrepid of body and spirit fear to tread. It puts you in a dark room with that thing in the closet and keeps you there; and there is no way out. And once inside, it forces you to face your worst fears, albeit vicariously, in a way that invites some serious reflection upon mortality and the profundity of life.

Vivian Bearing is a professor of English Literature, specializing in the work of Seventeenth Century poet John Donne. Hers is a scholarly life, and she is secure with her place in it; not yet fifty, she has achieved a level of comfort with herself, as well as her work, especially in the class she teaches on Donne. With her students she is a demanding taskmaster and does not suffer fools, nor students who opt for more immediate pleasures over Donne, refusing to accept youthful zeal as an excuse for academic impropriety. In her classroom, she insists that those in attendance rise to her level; she does not stoop to conquer.

Then, with the words of Dr. Kelekian, her world abruptly changes. At first, wrapped in intellectual armor, she finds at least some comfort and respite in her beloved Donne, but she soon finds that the pursuits of the mind, even leavened with a healthy ego, attain a diminished capacity within the environs of a ravaging disease. The eternity of the hospital affords her much time for reflection, and as her illness progresses she undergoes a change in perspectives; taking stock, she considers such things as the aloof manner she affected that served no purpose other than to distance her from her students. And she thinks about it now, not with regret, but differently; her intellectual acumen no longer separates her from her students, nor affords her a lofty perch from which she may sit in judgment. She understands, at last, that she is not so different from them after all. For as she discovers to her considerable dismay-- pain is the great equalizer.

Written by Nichols and Thompson, the screenplay is based on the play by Margaret Edson. The story unfolds like a living diary, as Vivian addresses the viewer directly, with a descriptive narrative that leaves little to the imagination. Graphically real and unrelenting, it is a riveting chronicle that will hold you in thrall from beginning to end and beyond-- because this experience does not end when the screen goes dark; it's something that is going to be with you for a long time afterwards, so be prepared. And the reason this will linger in your memory is that it's a contemplation of a reality that is horrendous beyond imagination. This is that thing that always happens to someone else, but never to `me,' and to be put in the room with someone to whom the unthinkable has happened-- to be up close and personal with it-- is emotionally devastating. This is a true horror story beyond anything Stephen King could write, because this is `real.' What happens to Vivian Bearing is something that happens to people all the time, and there has never been a film before or since that will put you more in touch with what it feels like, from the incredulity born at the moment of diagnosis to the acceptance of the reality of it. And it has nothing to do with courage; it is not about that at all. It's about knowing that you are going to have to do this thing that you least in the whole world want to do-- and that you have no choice in the matter.

This film is a veritable showcase for the incredible talent of Emma Thompson, who gives a performance that is so remarkable there are not enough superlatives to do it justice. Ineligible for Oscar consideration as this film was made for television (HBO), her performance nevertheless is as Oscar worthy as they come (even more impressive than her Oscar winning performance as Margaret in `Howard's End,' which was nothing less than a study in perfection). As Vivian Bearing, Thompson is absolutely mesmerizing-- you simply cannot take your eyes off of her for even a moment. There are times when you want to look away, to avert your eyes because it's just too painful to watch, but you can't. Once you begin this journey you are bound to her for better or worse. You suffer with her through the physical pain, as well as through the base indignities to which she is subjected as a matter of course by the doctors and care givers who simply do not respond to the humanity of the person in their care; a sad commentary, to be sure, but so true.

What really marks Thompson's performance as so extraordinary, however, is the fact that as you watch the drama unfold, you forget this is an actor playing a role; rather, this is a very real person you are watching-- a person named Vivian Bearing who is dying of cancer.

The supporting cast includes Eileen Atkins (E.M. Ashford), Audra McDonald (Susie), Jonathan M. Woodward (Jason) and Harold Pinter (Vivian's Father). An emotionally absorbing drama that redefines empathy and compassion, `Wit' will make you feel alive like never before, and thankful for each and every day that you wake up healthy. It's a film that will enrich your life. 10/10.


99 of 108 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
The Runaway Bunny... Jesus Quintana
boring pattythebro
Usually Don't Cry In Films. geewhizzerz
One of the most difficult movies I've ever watched adaros71
Emma Thompson did not win EMMY for 'Wit'? Why? doncoyotejr
Poetry cmmusic87
Discuss Wit (2001) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?