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Paris, Texas (1984)

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Travis Henderson, an aimless drifter who has been missing for four years, wanders out of the desert and must reconnect with society, himself, his life, and his family.

Director:

Wim Wenders

Writers:

L.M. Kit Carson (adaptation), Sam Shepard | 1 more credit »
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3,030 ( 205)
Top Rated Movies #243 | Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 16 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Harry Dean Stanton ... Travis Henderson
Nastassja Kinski ... Jane Henderson
Dean Stockwell ... Walt Henderson
Aurore Clément ... Anne Henderson (as Aurore Clement)
Hunter Carson ... Hunter Henderson
Bernhard Wicki ... Doctor Ulmer
Sam Berry Sam Berry ... Gas Station Attendant
Claresie Mobley Claresie Mobley ... Car Rental Clerk
Viva ... Woman on TV (as Viva Auder)
Edward Fayton Edward Fayton ... Hunter's Friend
Socorro Valdez Socorro Valdez ... Carmelita
Justin Hogg Justin Hogg ... Hunter - Age 3
Tom Farrell ... Screaming Man
John Lurie ... 'Slater'
Jeni Vici Jeni Vici ... 'Stretch'
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Storyline

A man wanders out of the desert after a four year absence. His brother finds him, and together they return to L.A. to reunite the man with his young son. Soon after, he and the boy set out to locate the mother of the child, who left shortly after the man disappeared. Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It brings magic back to the cinema... See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

West Germany | France | UK | USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

23 August 1984 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Париж, Техас See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

£1,162,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$22,709, 10 November 1984, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$2,181,987
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Musicians Kurt Cobain and Elliott Smith claimed this was their favorite movie of all time. See more »

Goofs

When Travis and Hunter are following the red Chevrolet from a downtown bank, they merge onto US HWY 59 northbound, just south of interstate 45 and north of the HWY 288 interchange with US HWY 59. After a few moments pass the next shot shows them approaching the HWY 59 and HWY 288 interchange (going northbound on HWY 59). This interchange is located about 1/2 mile south of the onramp they took in the previous shot so there is no way they would have been able to approach this interchange going north on HWY 59 had they taken the northbound onramp in the previous shot. See more »

Quotes

Jane Henderson: I wanted to see him so bad that I didn't even dare imagine him anymore.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in See This Movie (2004) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Ultimate Anti-Romance.
18 October 2009 | by Glengarry-Glen-WrightSee all my reviews

I would say that Paris, Texas is not for everyone, but, truly, that can be said about every movie. But I will say this: fans of methodically paced, beautifully shot, existentially rooted, and purely experiential cinema will not be disappointed.

Paris, Texas is virtually my favorite movie, and a movie that, whether you like it or not, will leave some impact on you. It is a journey, an experience, an odyssey.

Yes, it is long. Yes, it is slow. Defined plot points? Please.

But what this movie does do is place into the mind of it's lead character. Travis Henderson, an older man, gruff and worn out with age, wanders out of the Texas desert after missing from his family for four years. He is mute, and apparently unaware of who he is. His brother Walt finds him, and tries to rehabilitate him back into sanity. The film then covers Travis's journey to reconnect with a past which he has long since forgotten. He reunites with his son, his sister in-law, and eventually, in a scene which I tear up just thinking about, his wife.

But that is all I will divulge about his wife. That is a scene which you really have to see to believe.

While this film really doesn't rely on plot, it does have structure and tone. And what carries us through this mystical story is the unbelievably beautiful photography. We see the world as it should be seen: a starkly beautiful, but uncompromising, place. The use of color and motifs really makes this film a marvel to look at.

And then we get to performances. Everyone's great, so I will focus on our two truly main characters. Harry Dean Stanton plays Travis, a gentle, kind man, that, despite having personal demons, is a great fatherly figure (fine, maybe he isn't the best father...but there's no denying he left an impact on his son's life). And seeing Stanton bring this character to life in the most subtle and somber way possible is amazing. And then we have Natassja Kinski, who plays Jane, his wife. She doesn't show up until the third act, and 95% percent of her performance takes place in one room. But Kinski's portrayal of emotion...and her quiet, yet powerful demeanor...and the way she talks...god, it's unbelievable. Stanton and Kinski have some of the best chemistry ever, which is even more impressive considering they're never in the same room (see the movie...you'll understand). In the end, these two carry the movie on their backs, and do an amazing job doing it.

You may not cry, but you will think about crying. You will think about all the sad moments in your life. And it will all be washed out of you by movie's end. Believe me, I know this from personal experience. This movie is almost therapeutic in the way. Because the story is healing our own souls at the same time as it is healing Travis's.

So. What's more to say about Paris, Texas? It's a beautiful movie, one that relies on photography and performances to tell it's story, and a movie that portrays emotions on a master class level. And what do I mean by 'Anti-Romance'? It's not worth explaining here. See the movie, you'll understand.


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