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Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story (2005)
"A Cock and Bull Story" (original title)

 -  Comedy | Drama  -  20 January 2006 (UK)
6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 10,607 users   Metascore: 80/100
Reviews: 122 user | 123 critic | 35 from Metacritic.com

Director Michael Winterbottom (Northam) attempts to shoot the adaptation of Laurence Sterne's essentially unfilmable novel, "The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman."

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(novel), (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Elizabeth / Keeley Hawes
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Susannah
Raymond Waring ...
Trim
Conal Murphy ...
Joe Williams ...
Paul Kynman ...
Obadiah
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London Doctor
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Midwife
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Dr. Slop
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Surgeon
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Parson
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Mark
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Ed
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Storyline

Two actors, as their make up is applied, talk about the size of their parts. Then into the film: Laurence Sterne's unfilmable novel, Tristram Shandy, a fictive autobiography wherein the narrator, interrupted constantly, takes the entire story to be born. The film tracks between "Shandy" and behind the scenes. Size matters: parts, egos, shoes, noses. The lead's girlfriend, with their infant son, is up from London for the night, wanting sex; interruptions are constant. Scenes are shot, re-shot, and discarded. The purpose of the project is elusive. Fathers and sons; men and women; cocks and bulls. Life is amorphous, too full and too rich to be captured in one narrative. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Because everyone loves an accurate period piece. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 January 2006 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story  »

Box Office

Budget:

£2,800,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$60,886 (USA) (27 January 2006)

Gross:

$1,247,453 (USA) (28 April 2006)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

All of the armed soldiers (those with working guns) in the battle scenes, plus some other extras were members of the Sealed Knot Society, which tours the UK, performing historical re-enactments of the English Civil War. See more »

Quotes

Rob Brydon: [Rob shows Steve his teeth] What do you think? Have a look at the color.
Steve Coogan: I saw the color the last time I looked. It registered.
Rob Brydon: It's what they call "not white." What color would you call it?
Steve Coogan: I would, I'd concur with "not white." I'd go further.
Rob Brydon: I mean, it's not yellow.
Steve Coogan: I, you know, I mean, there's a sliding scale, isn't there, you know.
Rob Brydon: Hint of yellow.
Steve Coogan: I think you're closest to...
Rob Brydon: Barley meadow. Tuscan sunset.
Steve Coogan: You're getting laughs, but it's not making your teeth look any better.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Throughout the closing credits, Rob and Steve talk about how they use techniques of various other actors. See more »

Connections

References The X-Files (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

Sommarnattens Leende ('Smiles of a Summer Night') Galop
Composed by Erik Nordgren
Performed by the Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra
Conducted by Adriano
Licensed courtesy of Naxos Rights International Ltd
See more »

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User Reviews

 
best literature adaptation in ages
14 September 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Smart, funny, original. I just saw this at the Toronto Film Festival tonight, and was really impressed. Great and hilarious performances, especially by Steve Coogan, who is SO funny. But Rob Brydon is almost as great, and the two of them have a great rapport.

The film really captures the anarchistic spirit of the book. Hard to imagine that anyone could come up with an idea to bring this unusual book to the screen, and Michael Winterbottom hasn't been the most consistent of directors lately (or ever, really) but this is a winner. The story is told in several layers: a film is being made of the novel "Tristram Shandy", starring Steve Coogan as both Tristram and his father Walter Shandy, but the behind the scenes drama of the making of the film is an important component. And lots of parallels with the various players real lives (Steve Coogan and lap dancers, etc.) Incredibly clever. Definitely check it out.


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