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Life (I) (2015)

R  |   |  Biography, Drama  |  4 December 2015 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 798 users   Metascore: 55/100
Reviews: 6 user | 66 critic | 5 from

A photographer for Life Magazine is assigned to shoot pictures of James Dean.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Dennis Stock
Nicholas Ray
Natalie Wood
Messy Actress
John Blackwood ...
Raymond Massey
Publicity Trooper
John Morris's Secretary
Allison Brennan ...
Jack Warner's Assistant


A snapshot in time-the film chronicles the story behind the 1955 LIFE magazine photo thread by Dennis Stock of then-rising star, James Dean, and gives us an inside look at some of Hollywood's most iconic images and into the life of a gifted, but troubled man.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Biography | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some sexuality/nudity and language | See all certifications »



| | |


Release Date:

4 December 2015 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


James Dean's article written for Life Magazine was not very popular at the time when it was first released. See more »


References A Star Is Born (1954) See more »

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User Reviews

Inside look of Dean's short lived fame / anti-fame.
8 February 2015 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

James Dean, although the lead-star of only three films, concreted himself as one of the cinema's golden age legends quite quickly in the 1950's - mainly through his unconventional approach to Hollywood's rules - this is, all before his premature death quite soon later.

Portrayed by Dane Dehaan, LIFE is a satirical chronicle of Dean's rise of an unknown to his Hollywood acting debut of success and fame. Yet, the film is not directly told as a documentary of his life - but via the lens of Robert Pattinson's character, Dennis Stock, a rookie photographer for a photo-agency with aspirations of becoming known.

Set in the 1950's, director Anton Corbijn's take on Dean's life is admirably applaudable as it takes us on an inside look of Dean's short lived fame and anti-fame. The sets, the cinematography, the music and the atmosphere all cipher the 50's pose, as smoking and larger-than-life LA are the standard.

First meeting at a party in 1955, Dennis (the photographer) approaches Dean; a young, sophisticated individual wearing a melo- polo, slicked hair with thick framed glasses and asks who he is. For Dehaan, the performance, both visually and in terms of acting is undeniably suited as he resonates Dean's moody and unique approach, showing him as a person, not merely an icon.

Forming sturdy relationships with Jack Warner (Ben Kingsley), of Warner Brothers Pictures, Dean's talent is soon spotted, and through several frustrations of the individual's motives, he told to 'play the part, follow the rules' and he would be made a star.

For Robert Pattinson, his take on iconic photographer Dennis Stock is equally as impressive as he enters the world of Hollywood from the other side of the carpet (and at bottom). Spotting Dean's talent early, Stock, in the two-hour running time attempts to get photographs of Dean before fame kicks in. Deadlines, pressure and awkwardness soon mount-up, and Pattinson expertly presents it onto screen.

Shot-by-shot, we capture each of Stock's photos of James Dean - but, rather than just a photo and what point it was taken - we are inclusively taken into a perspective of why it was taken, the setting and how they were so important - and now, in retrospective of our present - why so iconic.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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