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The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008)

PG-13  |   |  Drama, Fantasy, Romance  |  25 December 2008 (USA)
7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 401,936 users   Metascore: 70/100
Reviews: 812 user | 357 critic | 37 from Metacritic.com

Tells the story of Benjamin Button, a man who starts aging backwards with bizarre consequences.

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(screenplay), (story), 2 more credits »
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Won 3 Oscars. Another 69 wins & 118 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Dorothy Baker (as Faune Chambers)
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Jacob Tolano ...
Martin Gateau (as Jacob Wood)
Earl Maddox ...
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Priest Giving Last Rites
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Doctor at Benjamin's Birth
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Tizzy (as Mahershalalhashbaz Ali)
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Storyline

On the day that Hurricane Katrina hits New Orleans, elderly Daisy Williams (nee Fuller) is on her deathbed in a New Orleans hospital. At her side is her adult daughter, Caroline. Daisy asks Caroline to read to her aloud the diary of Daisy's lifelong friend, Benjamin Button. Benjamin's diary recounts his entire extraordinary life, the primary unusual aspect of which was his aging backwards, being diagnosed with several aging diseases at birth and thus given little chance of survival, but who does survive and gets younger with time. Abandoned by his biological father, Thomas Button, after Benjamin's biological mother died in childbirth, Benjamin was raised by Queenie, a black woman and caregiver at a seniors home. Daisy's grandmother was a resident at that home, which is where she first met Benjamin. Although separated through the years, Daisy and Benjamin remain in contact throughout their lives, reconnecting in their forties when in age they finally match up. Some of the revelations ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

"I was born under unusual circumstances". See more »

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for brief war violence, sexual content, language and smoking | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

| |  »

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

25 December 2008 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Benjamin Button  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$150,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£2,213,495 (UK) (6 February 2009)

Gross:

$127,490,802 (USA) (17 April 2009)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At one point in its development, this was mooted as a project for Phil Alden Robinson. See more »

Goofs

When Thomas Button first is seen in the movie observing Benjamin during an outdoor gathering at the old folks house, he gets immediately into his car and leaves, the camera pans back to Benjamin with a power pole visible behind him. The pole has a modern cable television/internet wire running down it, just above his shoulder. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Daisy: What are you looking at, Caroline?
Caroline: The wind, mom.
[yawns]
Caroline: They say the hurricane is coming.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Paramount and Warner Bros. logos are in the form of mosaics constructed from several buttons. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #21.188 (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

OSTRICH WALK
Written by Edwin B. Edwards (as Edwin Edwards), Nick LaRocca (as James La Rocca), Henry Ragas (as H.N. Ragas), Tony Sbarbaro (as Anthony Sbarbaro), and Larry Shields
Performed by Frank Trumbauer and His Orchestra featuring Bix Beiderbecke
Courtesy of Columbia Records
By Arrangement with SONY BMG Music Entertainment
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
An Astonishing Rarity
26 December 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button is a film unlike any I've ever seen and probably ever will. A true epic that left me utterly speechless. It accomplished so much through such simplicity. Everything was top notch from the elegant directing to the subtly wonderful performances down to the magical score. The film demands you to feel not only for the death we witness, but for the incredible life we discover. It prays on the obvious morality issues we all deal with but also dangles the idea in front of us that everyone goes through the same joys and grievances, just not in the same way. This is a momentous tale that deserves nothing less than the title of brilliance.

This visually and emotionally rich movie recalls the life of a very peculiar man born in the early 20th century who ages backwards. His tale unfolds through a diary read by the daughter of his love, Daisy. Throughout life he goes through the same things we do, growing up and eventually growing old. He's a thoughtful observer, discovering life from all different angles. But it is not his life that makes him unique. His love is what makes him special. He spends a lifetime trying to understand how his love for Daisy works and still only gets a few incredible years really loving her. As their lives tell us, the years of frustration and hardship are all worth it if only for a few moments of happiness.

The direction in the film is almost flawless. Hopefully, Benjamin Button will garner David Fincher the recognition he deserves. He winds this clock so well and with such grace that the movie has this undeniable flow that is enjoyable from start to finish. At nearly 3 hours, there is not a minute wasted. Every shot is jaw dropping and while some will find issue with the time, it is used wisely.

The acting is also a thing of wonder. This is by far Brad Pitt's best performance. He is so believable and realistic throughout. His nuances are spot on and despite the heavy use of make-up and CGI used to portray his character, it is Pitt who makes Benjamin that much more curious.

I left the theater astonished that some one could review this movie badly. It is an extremely graceful depiction of life, love, and the things we lose. After so much anticipation I was certainly not disappointed. This movie is probably not for everyone though. It's not your average drama that spoon feeds it's audience their emotions. It is something of awe and astonishment, an absolute gem. What makes our lives memorable are the moments we never seem to grasp long enough before letting go. Life in itself is indeed very, very curious and Benjamin Button is no less of a wonder.


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