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Stranger Than Fiction (2006)

An IRS auditor suddenly finds himself the subject of narration only he can hear: narration that begins to affect his entire life, from his work, to his love-interest, to his death.

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Guy Massey ...
Martha Espinoza ...
T.J. Jagodowski ...
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Ricky Adams ...
Young Boy
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Young Boy's Father
Denise Hughes ...
Kronecker Bus Driver
Peggy Roeder ...
Polish Woman
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Bakery Employee #1
Helen Young ...
Bakery Customer #1
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Storyline

Everybody knows that your life is a story. But what if a story was your life? Harold Crick is your average IRS agent: monotonous, boring, and repetitive. But one day this all changes when Harold begins to hear an author inside his head narrating his life. The narrator it is extraordinarily accurate, and Harold recognizes the voice as an esteemed author he saw on TV. But when the narration reveals that he is going to die, Harold must find the author of the story, and ultimately his life, to convince her to change the ending of the story before it is too late. Written by the lexster

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Harold Crick isn't ready to go. Period. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some disturbing images, sexuality, brief language and nudity | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

10 November 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Killing Harold Crick  »

Box Office

Budget:

$38,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$13,411,093 (USA) (12 November 2006)

Gross:

$40,137,776 (USA) (17 December 2006)
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Technical Specs

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1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The guitar that the narrator describes as saying, "I'm compensating for something. Guess what?" is a Cherry Gibson EDS-1275, the guitar made famous by Jimmy Page. See more »

Goofs

The Wristwatch saves Harold Crick's life by stopping the bleeding of the artery in his right arm by a shard of metal. Actually the Wristwatch should have killed him because a clogged artery could lead to some serious blood clotting and cause a major stroke or heart attack. See more »

Quotes

Harold Crick: How are you?
Ana Pascal: I'm lousy. I'm being audited.
Harold Crick: Of course.
Ana Pascal: By a real creep too.
Harold Crick: I think I owe you an apology.
Ana Pascal: Really?
Harold Crick: IRS agents, we're given rigorous aptitude tests before we can work. Unfortunately for you, we aren't tested on tact or good manners, so I apologize.
[stammers]
Harold Crick: I ogled you. Sorry.
Ana Pascal: Okay, apology accepted. But only because you stammered.
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Crazy Credits

During the end credits, the names of the characters and the actors who played them were displayed against stylized images of the places where the characters worked. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Death and Taxes (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

The Way We Get By
(2002)
Written by Britt Daniel
Performed by Spoon
Courtesy of Merge Records
By Arrangement with Bank Robber Music
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Detailed, Astute, Eclectic, and Entertaining Pseudo-Comedy
19 November 2006 | by (New Jersey, USA) – See all my reviews

"Stranger than Fiction" is the complex tale of a simple IRS man named Harold Crick (an appealing Will Ferrel) who one day awakes to his own voice-over narration only to find he is the unwitting main character in the new tragic novel from acclaimed author Karen Eiffel (an excellent return to form for Emma Thompson). Imagine a Charlie Kaufman penned film where all the cynicism and nihilism is replaced with an endearing and heartfelt melancholy that creates a surprising amount of emotional involvement in characters who would've otherwise been over-reaching literacy devices, and you'll get a feel for the sincere type of entertainment Marc Forster's film provides.

Forster, with his keen eye and eclectic visual sense, populates the film the sharp and contrasting visual angles, camera tricks, and in-frame oddities (like the play with numbers) constantly keeping the viewer engaged and on their toes. Fun supporting turns from Dustin Hoffman as a literary theorist employed by Krick to help find out if the story he is in is a comedy or tragedy, and Queen Latifah as Eiffel's no-nonsense publishing assistant help guide the viewers through imaginative stretches that are occasionally too clever by half. Ferrel gets to show some nice range here, and much like Robin Williams did with "The World According to Garp" and Jim Carrey did with "The Truman Show," graduates with honors into more high-minded quasi-serious roles. His co-lead Thompson is subtly method and well studied as the reclusive sociopathic author who just can't help killing her characters.

What really seals the deal is Maggie Gyllenhal as Farrell's love interest, the anti-establishment baker he is assigned to audit. She literally lights up the screen. There's one expertly framed and perfectly lit shot of her standing outside her townhouse inviting Farrel in for the night where the light from street lamp off screen is filtered in through the shadows of tree branches and hits her face in such a way that in that brief flickering frame you become insanely happy to be watching such a pleasant marriage of literary concepts inside a visual medium. At this point you don't care how the film ends. You're just grateful to experience that giddy moment of pure movie entertainment.


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