7.8/10
36,120
199 user 100 critic

Withnail & I (1987)

R | | Comedy, Drama | 19 June 1987 (USA)
Trailer
2:06 | Trailer

On Disc

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In 1969, two substance-abusing, unemployed actors retreat to the countryside for a holiday that proves disastrous.

Director:

Bruce Robinson

Writer:

Bruce Robinson
Reviews
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Richard E. Grant ... Withnail
Paul McGann ... ... & I
Richard Griffiths ... Monty
Ralph Brown ... Danny
Michael Elphick ... Jake
Daragh O'Malley ... Irishman
Michael Wardle ... Isaac Parkin
Una Brandon-Jones Una Brandon-Jones ... Mrs. Parkin
Noel Johnson Noel Johnson ... General
Irene Sutcliffe Irene Sutcliffe ... Waitress
Llewellyn Rees Llewellyn Rees ... Tea Shop Proprietor
Robert Oates Robert Oates ... Policeman 1
Anthony Wise ... Policeman 2
Eddie Tagoe ... Presuming Ed
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Storyline

London, 1969 - two 'resting' (unemployed and unemployable) actors, Withnail and Marwood, fed up with damp, cold, piles of washing-up, mad drug dealers and psychotic Irishmen, decide to leave their squalid Camden flat for an idyllic holiday in the countryside, courtesy of Withnail's uncle Monty's country cottage. But when they get there, it rains non-stop, there's no food, and their basic survival skills turn out to be somewhat limited. Matters are not helped by the arrival of Uncle Monty, who shows an uncomfortably keen interest in Marwood... Written by Michael Brooke <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

If you don't remember the sixties, don't worry - neither did they. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Handmade Films Website

Country:

UK

Language:

English | Latin

Release Date:

19 June 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Withnail & I See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$1,544,889
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the scene where they set off for Penrith, in the shot where the Jaguar drives away towards a railway bridge after Marwood flips the shades down on his glasses, Bruce Robinson's rare Aston Martin DB4 convertible can be seen parked in the background on the right hand side immediately before the bridge. This car also appears in the Bagleys' garage in How to Get Ahead in Advertising (1989) See more »

Goofs

Withnail's hairstyle is clearly from the mid-1980's, not 1969. See more »

Quotes

[Marwood comes out of the bathroom wearing a towel]
Danny: You're looking very beautiful, man. Have you been away? Saint Peter preached the epistles to the apostles looking like that.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Paul McGann is credited only as "and I". See more »

Alternate Versions

The original cinema version of this film was shorter than the one that has since been released on video, laserdisc and DVD. Changes include:
  • Marwood's opening voice-over has been redubbed.
  • Marwood's speech about his thumbs having gone weird has been cut. The scene thus goes from the line "I don't feel good" to "Look at my tongue".
  • Withnail's "I'm gonna pull your head off" has been cut.
  • Danny's anecdote about The Coalman has been cut.
  • Some dialogue concerning Withnail's current work and Marwood also being a thespian has been cut out of the scene at Monty's home.
  • The scene of Marwood slipping in the mud and then angrily persuading Withnail to have another look at the shed has been cut.
  • The first part of Withnail and Marwood's conversation with the major, concerning Withnail having been in the Territorials, has been cut. The scene in this version simply dissolves from Withnail and Marwood walking to the pub with Marwood's voice-over to the major bringing up the subject of Jake. Marwood's line about why Withnail lied to the major has understandably also been cut.
  • The word Saveloy has been redubbed to Sausage.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in My Dinner with Hervé (2018) See more »

Soundtracks

A Whiter Shade of Pale
Performed by King Curtis
Written by Keith Reid, Gary Brooker and Matthew Fisher (uncredited)
1969 Published by Westminster Music Ltd.
Original Sound Recording made by Warner Bros. Records
See more »

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User Reviews

Role of a lifetime
13 September 1999 | by triskellionSee all my reviews

Richard E Grant is simply perfect as Withnail, the addled but undoubtedly well-equipped "actor" on holiday with his pal, the "I" in the title. His soliloquy from Hamlet in the final scene is one of the best readings of that scene anyone's done in film. This is a film with a point, and a great way of avoiding making it too emphatically. I love every character, and every line. When Withnail frantically searches for antifreeze after drinking lighter fluid in a crazed attempt to become drunk, "I" says, "Everyone knows you shouldn't mix your drink!" Superb!


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