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Brideshead Revisited (2008)

PG-13 | | Drama, Romance | 15 August 2008 (USA)
A poignant story of forbidden love and the loss of innocence set in England prior to the Second World War.


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10 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Thomas Morrison ...
David Barrass ...
Ship's Barber
Celia Ryder
Lady Guest
Stephen Carlile ...
English Lord
Peter Barnes ...
American Professor
Mr Ryder
Richard Teverson ...
Cousin Jasper
Roger Walker ...
Mark Edel-Hunt ...
Oxford Student


WWII. Charles Ryder, in his civilian life, rose out of his middle class London background, which includes being an atheist and having a distant relationship with his eccentric father, to become an up and coming artist. He is currently an army officer, who is stationed at a makeshift camp set up at Brideshead estate before imminently getting shipped into battle. The locale, which is not unfamiliar to him, makes him reminisce about what ended up being his doomed relationship with Brideshead's owners, the Flytes, an ostentatiously wealthy family. Charles first met Sebastian Flyte when they both were students at Oxford, where Sebastian surprisingly welcomed Charles into his circle of equally wealthy, somewhat stuck up and flamboyant friends. Charles ended up getting caught up in Sebastian's family struggles, where Sebastian used excessive alcohol to deal with the pain resulting from his family relationships. Although Charles and Sebastian were more than just friends, Charles ultimately ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Privilege. Ambition. Desire. At Brideshead Everything Comes at a Price. See more »


Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:


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Release Date:

15 August 2008 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Regreso a Brideshead  »


Box Office


$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£375,270 (United Kingdom), 5 October 2008, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$339,616, 27 July 2008, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$6,414,563, 21 September 2008
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


David Yates was set to direct this film, but had to step aside from the director's chair to direct Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007) instead. While Yates was attached, Paul Bettany, Jennifer Connelly and Jude Law were cast in the roles of Charles, Julia and Sebastian respectively. It was also announced that Chatsworth House in Derbyshire would be used as Brideshead. See more »


The Venetian drummers have instruments fitted with Mylar drumheads (Remo Pinstripes) that were not manufactured before WWII. Calfskin heads or ones that resembled calfskin would have been more appropriate for the time. See more »


Lady Marchmain: I act only as God directs.
Charles Ryder: Rubbish. God's your best invention. Whatever you want, he does.
See more »


With the Rumba Playing
Music & Lyrics by Terry Davies
Violin by Chris Garrick
Guitar by John Etheridge
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Oh dear, something of a parody of Waugh's subtle novel
1 September 2012 | by See all my reviews

Julian Jarrold's interpretation of Brideshead Revisited is not exactly bad, but it's not very good either and, for me, is a great disappointment. Evelyn Waugh is my favourite author, but even I admit that Brideshead is something of the cuckoo in the nest in his work (and he also admits in a preface to later editions that he did tone down the sumptuousness of the novel's first incarnation). It is not typical of his work. Having said that, it is still a damn sight more subtle than Jarrold's film.

Matthew Goode as Charles Ryder does rather well as the middle-class lad who is bowled over by every aspect of the Catholic aristocratic family which takes him under its wing. But Ben Whishaw's Sebastian Flyte is a parody. It doesn't help that I can't stand Wishaw and have loathed his every performance, but I'll try not to let that influence this appraisal.

In a sense Wishaw's two-dimensional portrayal of Sebastian as a young, weak, very gay, spoilt and rich man adrift in the world and life typifies what, in my view, is wrong with Jarrold's film. Where Waugh has a light touch and is subtle and ambiguous, Jarrold uses far too broad a brush to paint his picture and thereby kills the piece stone dead. It might survive for later generations as an entertaining enough period piece, but it can and should expect no higher praise than that.

Certainly, there are a great many aspects of the film which score well: the production is good, the casting - except for bloody Wishaw - is decent, but without hitting the bullseye in translating the novel's essence to the silver screen, all those successes are rather pointless.

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