8.1/10
7,866
116 user 19 critic

Wit (2001)

PG-13 | | Drama | TV Movie 24 March 2001
A renowned professor is forced to reassess her life when she is diagnosed with terminal ovarian cancer.

Director:

Writers:

(play), (teleplay) | 1 more credit »
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3,699 ( 170)

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at Amazon

Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. Another 11 wins & 19 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Dr. Harvey Kelekian
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Mr. Bearing (Vivian's Father)
Rebecca Laurie ...
Vivian aged 5
Su Lin Looi ...
Nurse (as Su-Lin Looi)
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Technician 1
Miquel Brown ...
Technician 2
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Fellow 1 (as Harry Dillon)
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Fellow 2
Alex Gregor ...
Fellow 3
Lachele Carl ...
Fellow 4
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Student 1
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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:

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Details

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Release Date:

24 March 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

W;t  »

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Company Credits

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,  »
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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Margaret Edson wrote the play "Wit" (for which she won the 1999 Pulitzer Prize for Drama), she was an Atlanta-area kindergarten teacher. In 2010, she changed to teaching sixth grade instead at Inman Middle School in Atlanta. "Wit" was the first (and, as of 2012, the only) play she ever wrote. See more »

Goofs

During her exam with the young internist, her arms alternate repeatedly from being completely under the sheet, to being folded together on top of the sheet. See more »

Quotes

Vivian Bearing: I trust this will have a soporific effect.
Susie Monahan: I don't know about that, but it sure does make you sleepy.
Vivian Bearing: [laughing]
Susie Monahan: What's so funny? What? What?
Vivian Bearing: [laughing] Soporific means "makes you sleepy".
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Saved! (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Spiegel im Spiegel
Written by Arvo Pärt
Produced by Manfred Eicher
Courtesy of ECM Records
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User Reviews

Non-abstract Meditation
28 March 2001 | by (Eatontown, NJ, USA) – See all my reviews

"Non-abstract Meditation" may sound like a contradiction, but then this film is full of contradictions -- like life itself.

We are given a look into life and death from the point of view of a poetry scholar who has, in turn, viewed life and death in the abstract through John Donne's poetry. She, in turn, is viewed in the abstract by a renowned doctor who views life and death as a case in a bed and by the scholar's former student who doesn't know how to communicate with patients beyond superficial catch phrases.

This is a touching, powerfully filmed play guided by the witty, amusing, profound, and painful asides and soliloquies of the main character. Her only human contact seems to be through the compassionate nurse, the scholar's old teacher, and the audience -- the point being that we too often live our lives inside walled prisons of our own construction and then come to the end realizing that we had never lived at all.

The movie could easily have descended into melodrama but instead is gritty, prim, and gripping in its own odd way. See this one if you can.


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