Maurice Russell, once a great actor, is now living in London in the twilight of his life. Those of his generation remember him fondly, while those in the younger generations have no idea who he is. He spends most of his time hanging out with his friends Ian, also an actor, and Donald, or visiting with his wife Valerie for who he has great affection but with who he no longer lives. His acting career is virtually over, he only taking roles on the odd occasion when he needs the money. Ian has decided to invite his young great-niece Jessie from the provinces to come and stay with him, basically to act as his caregiver in case he falls ill, but also to be his companion. He envisions listening to Bach with her and her cooking him food to which he is accustomed. Jessie's stay is nothing as he envisions. She doesn't know how to cook, she drinks all his alcohol, and she has unrealistic visions of what she will accomplish in her life. Maurice, however, sees in Jessie, a person who can help him ... Written by
This marked Peter O'Toole's eighth and final nomination for a Best Actor Academy Award. The first was for Lawrence of Arabia (1962) 44 years earlier. He lost every time and therefore holds the record for the most Academy Award acting nominations without a win. However, received an honorary Oscar for his lifetime work in 2002. See more »
In the newspaper fight scene in the restaurant, the waitress is seen about a foot behind Maurice as he is initially attacked. From the opposite camera angle, the waitress alternates between being missing or about ten feet away. See more »
I haven't got anything to wear.
I can't think of anything more enraging, my dear.
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There is poetry to Peter O'Toole's performance in "Venus"; it is so effortless, so seamless, so beyond "acting" that it tempts the rest of us to give up and hand in our union cards. No actor in memory has so finely embraced with voice Shakespeare's "Shall I compare thee to a summers day...". This is as fine a vintage as you'll ever find! Perfection. Roger Michell delivers a superb cast all around. Jodie Whitaker hands in a lovely nuanced performance, especially for a newcomer. Together with O'Toole, Leslie Phillips and Richard Griffiths present a marvelous portrait of aging actors. Michell deftly makes us laugh at some things simply because it hurts too much to weep. This is such a beautifully layered and rich film one may want to revisit it time and again.
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