7.8/10
16,154
108 user 82 critic

Babette's Feast (1987)

Babettes gæstebud (original title)
G | | Drama | 4 March 1988 (USA)
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During the late 19th century, a strict religious community in a Danish village takes in a French refugee from the Franco-Prussian War as a servant to the late pastor's daughters.

Director:

Gabriel Axel

Writers:

Karen Blixen (short story), Gabriel Axel (screenplay)
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 10 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Stéphane Audran ... Babette Hersant (as Stephane Audran)
Bodil Kjer Bodil Kjer ... Filippa
Birgitte Federspiel ... Martine
Jarl Kulle ... General Lorens Löwenhielm / Löwenhielm's Father
Jean-Philippe Lafont ... Achille Papin (as Jean Philippe Lafont)
Bibi Andersson ... Swedish Lady-in-Waiting
Ghita Nørby Ghita Nørby ... Narrator (voice)
Asta Esper Hagen Andersen Asta Esper Hagen Andersen ... Anna (as Asta Esper Andersen)
Thomas Antoni Thomas Antoni ... Swedish Lieutenant
Gert Bastian Gert Bastian ... Poor Man
Viggo Bentzon Viggo Bentzon ... Fisherman in Rowboat
Vibeke Hastrup ... Young Martine
Therese Højgaard Christensen Therese Højgaard Christensen ... Martha - Father's Maid
Pouel Kern Pouel Kern ... Pastor
Cay Kristiansen Cay Kristiansen ... Poul
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Storyline

In a remote 19th-century Danish village, two sisters lead a rigid life centered around their father, the local minister, and their church. Both had opportunities to leave the village: one could have married a young army officer and the other, a French opera singer. Their father objected in each case, and they spent their lives caring for him. Many years later - their father is now deceased - they take in French refugee, Babette Hersant, who agrees to work as their servant. After winning the lottery, Babette wants to repay the sisters for their kindness and offers to cook a French meal for them and their friends on the 100th anniversary of their father's birth. It proves to be an eye-opening experience for everyone. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Denmark

Language:

Danish | Swedish | French | Italian | English

Release Date:

4 March 1988 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Babette's Feast See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$4,398,938
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The original novella is set in the Norwegian village of Berlevag. Although Gabriel Axel stayed very close to the original source he felt that the original setting had become too colourful and pretty to evoke the bleakness described by Blixen, and transposed the setting to Jutland in his native Denmark, where he had the wooden village houses built. See more »

Goofs

In 1871 Babette pays with Skilling, which was the currency used at that time; 14 years later, Babette still uses Skilling, but Denmark changed the currency in 1875 from skilling to kroner and orer. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[in Danish, using English subtitles]
Narrator: In this remote spot there once lived two sisters who were both past the first flush of youth. They had been christened Martina and Philippa after Martin Luther and his friend Philipp Melanchton. They spent all their time and almost all their small income on good works.
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Connections

Referenced in Lang historie kort (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Were Nur Den Lieben Gott
(uncredited)
Written by Georg Neumark, Danish lyrics by unknown author
Sung after the meal
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Good Things (like a great meal) Come To Those Who Wait
22 January 2007 | by ccthemovieman-1See all my reviews

If you find the first 30 minutes of this film to be so slow that you wonder why you're watching it, don't give up. Also, hearing the Danish language is a bit new to most North Americans, who don't see and hear a lot of Danish films. Anyway, as the film progressed it got better and better and the viewer is rewarded for his/her patience.

Being a fan of the movie, "Out Of Africa," this film piqued my interest because it's based on a short novel by Isak Dinesen (Karen Blixen), the major character in that film.

The meal - Babette's feast - was amazing. I'm no chef, but I was impressed! How one interprets the story, too, varies, I suppose depending on how much you read into this, and where you stand religion-wise. If the latter, how you look at the definition of "legalism" can affect how you interpret this story.

In any case, it's a fine film, but don't watch this if you're dieting.


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