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This Must Be the Place (2011)

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Cheyenne, a retired rock star living off his royalties in Dublin, returns to New York City to find the man responsible for a humiliation suffered by his recently deceased father during W.W.II.



(screenplay), (screenplay)
4,414 ( 153)
18 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Mary's Mother (as Olwen Fouéré)
Danielle O'Brien ...
Supermarket Girl #1
Margaret O'Reilly ...
Supermarket Girl #2
Mairin O'Donovan ...
Old Lady in Bank
Old Man in Cemetary
Master Deng ...
Chinese Tai Chi Teacher
Jane Myers ...
Jeffrey's Girlfriend
Heather Fedyk ...
Elevator Woman #1
Elevator Woman #2


Cheyenne, a wealthy former rock star (Penn), now bored and jaded in his retirement embarks on a quest to find his father's persecutor, an ex-Nazi war criminal now hiding out in the U.S. Learning his father is close to death, he travels to New York in the hope of being reconciled with him during his final hours, only to arrive too late. Having been estranged for over 30 years, it is only now in death that he learns the true extent of his father's humiliation in Auschwitz at the hands of former SS Officer Aloise Lange - an event he is determined to avenge. So begins a life-altering journey across the heartland of America to track down and confront his father's nemesis. As his quest unfolds, Cheyenne is reawakened by the people he encounters and his journey is transformed into one of reconciliation and self discovery. As his date with destiny arrives and he tracks down Lange, Cheyenne must finally decide if it is redemption he seeks ....or revenge. Starring two time Academy Award winner ... Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A former rock star is hunting down a Nazi criminal...This could be his greatest hit. See more »


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, some sexual content and brief disturbing images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:


| |



Release Date:

24 August 2011 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Un lugar donde quedarse  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


€25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$7,754 (USA) (2 November 2012)


$142,242 (USA) (14 December 2012)

Company Credits

Production Co:

, ,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (cut)

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The red truck in the snow scene has a State of Texas inspection sticker on the windshield. See more »


Mordecai Midler: You know about the Holocaust?
Cheyenne: In a general sort of way.
Mordecai Midler: And your father? Did you know your father?
Cheyenne: In a general sort of way.
See more »


Features Jamie at Home (2007) See more »


Lay & Love
Written by Will Oldham (as W. Oldham)
Performed by The Pieces Of Shit
(c) Royal Stable Music
Published in Italy by Universal Music Publishing Ricordi S.r.l.
See more »

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User Reviews

Alternately quirky and affecting, this heartwarming movie with its laid-back charm and deadpan humour is anchored by a virtuoso performance by Sean Penn
31 March 2012 | by (Singapore) – See all my reviews

Is there a role which eludes Sean Penn? In Italian director Paolo Sorrentino's English-language debut following his 2008 Cannes hit 'Il Divo', the two-time Academy Award winner takes on an unlikely comedic role as an over-the-hill pop star named Cheyenne and pulls it off with aplomb. Indeed, even though the movie never does quite come together as a cohesive whole, Penn's brilliant performance more than anchors the entire film, and you'll find yourself hard-pressed to take your eyes off him.

To say that Penn owns the entire movie is not an overstatement- right from the start, Penn mesmerises with a bizarre get-up consisting of a jet-black fright wig and all-black lipstick and eyeliner even in the comfort of his own sprawling home. As is typical of such characters, Cheyenne suffers from depression, and besides doing the groceries while his fireman of a wife (Frances McDormand) is off at work, spends most of his time in the day hanging out with a spunky teen Mary (Eve Hewson) at a café in a shopping mall.

Purpose is what is lacking in his life- haunted by the suicide of two brothers who said they were inspired by his lyrics, Cheyenne has not been able to return to his music since. For the first half hour, Sorrentino familiarises his audience with the idiosyncrasies of his lead character as well as his marriage with his wife Jane, and thanks to an empathetic performance by Penn, your heart will go out to this lost soul searching for that elusive thing called meaning. It is testament to Penn's flawless performance that you'll still feel the warmth and heart behind his character's eccentricities.

Cheyenne awakens from his stupor when he gets news that his father is dying and promptly makes the travel by cruise- because of his fear of flying- to New York. Unfortunately, he arrives too late, missing the very last opportunity to connect with the father he has not spoken to in years. So when his cousin Richard (Liron Levo) informs him that his dad was obsessed with tracking down a Nazi war criminal at Auschwitz named Aloise Lange (Heinz Lieven), Cheyenne takes it upon himself to complete his father's mission.

And so begins a road trip across the United States, each pit-stop in Michigan, New Mexico and finally Utah offering memorable encounters with locals that in their own way serve to give him closure and reconciliation. Mirroring Cheyenne's own inner transformation, Sorrentino adopts a measured pace as Cheyenne meets a history teacher (Joyce Van Patten), a war widow (Kerry Condon), his dad's fellow Nazi hunter Mordecai Midler (Judd Hirsch) and finally of course Lange himself. Less patient viewers will probably be frustrated, but those willing to accept the laid-back tone of the film will find Cheyenne's journey a rather therapeutic one- especially in its closing lesson on the importance of learning to let go of the past.

Sorrentino, who co-wrote the script with Umberto Contrarello, also lightens the mood of the film with some well-placed deadpan humour, delivered with panache by Penn. A scene where Cheyenne meets a gaggle of women in the lift discussing which brand of lipstick is best and finally gives them due advice just to shut them up is sharply hilarious, while his well-meaning attempt at match-making Mary with an earnest shopping mall staff proves sweet and amusing. But through the varying types of humour, it is Penn's unpretentious acting that makes them work- with a recurring gesture of Penn casually blowing a wisp of hair falling across his face perhaps the most consistently delightful narrative device. Among his co-stars, McDormand shines in her role as Cheyenne's wife, and a sequence where she is practising tai-chi in her lawn while distracted by her husband in the upper window one of the best moments in the film.

For rock fans, the participation of David Bryne is no doubt a highlight in itself, and Sorrentino pleases his fans with an extended concert scene that has the rock star performing the title song of the film while a woman in a room that reflects a period setting floats above the crowd. Nonetheless, for us cinephiles, the delight is in watching Sean Penn take on an unlikely comedic role in spite of his dramatic credentials. If it isn't yet apparent, we'll say it again- Penn's flawless performance is good enough reason to visit this place, and it's one that is warm, touching and unexpectedly affecting.

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bad film - a bit of a train wreck darrenmoran
Cheyenne looks like Robert Smith (The Cure) FrouFrouFoxes
Couldn't Understand..... wkt54
So who was Tony? olligf
USA Release Date ? neeble2
The Native American (Indian) passenger. slaphead504
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