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Shirley Valentine (1989)

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Shirley's a middle-aged Liverpool housewife, who finds herself talking to the wall while she prepares her husband's chip'n'egg, wondering what happened to her life. She compares scenes in ... See full summary »

Director:

Lewis Gilbert

Writers:

Willy Russell (play), Willy Russell (screenplay)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 4 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Pauline Collins ... Shirley Valentine
Tom Conti ... Costas
Julia McKenzie ... Gillian
Alison Steadman ... Jane
Joanna Lumley ... Marjorie
Sylvia Syms ... Headmistress
Bernard Hill ... Joe
George Costigan ... Dougie
Anna Keaveney Anna Keaveney ... Jeanette
Tracie Bennett Tracie Bennett ... Millandra
Ken Sharrock Ken Sharrock ... Sydney
Karen Craig Karen Craig ... Thelma
Gareth Jefferson Gareth Jefferson ... Brian
Gillian Kearney ... Young Shirley
Catharine Duncan ... Young Marjorie
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Storyline

Shirley's a middle-aged Liverpool housewife, who finds herself talking to the wall while she prepares her husband's chip'n'egg, wondering what happened to her life. She compares scenes in her current life with what she used to be like and feels she's stagnated and in a rut. But when her best friend wins an all-expenses-paid vacation to Greece for two, Shirley begins to see the world, and herself, in a different light. Written by Kathy Li

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

No one thought she had the courage. The nerve. Or the lingerie.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 August 1989 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Shirley Valentine - Auf Wiedersehen, mein lieber Mann See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$6,353,913
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The movie was made by the same team that brought Educating Rita (1983) to the screen. The film was the second of two collaborations of playwright Willy Russell and director Lewis Gilbert who had six years earlier made Educating Rita (1983). See more »

Goofs

When Shirley is with her son in the squat in Kirby he sees a couple of kids robbing a car. When the car drives away you can see that the kid driving is replaced by an adult stunt driver. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Shirley Valentine: Hiya Wall.
[to the camera]
Shirley Valentine: Well what's wrong with that? There's a woman three doors down talks to her microwave. Talking to a microwave! Wall, what's the world coming to ?
See more »

Alternate Versions

When the film received its British terrestrial television debut, the BBC edited the famous "You afraid I want to try and make f*** with you" exchange between Costas and Shirley, substituting the profanity for the word "love" and effectively ruining one of the funniest moments in the film (Dougie's reaction to the juicy dialogue). Several people complained, and the next time the BBC showed the film, the bad language was left intact. See more »

Connections

Spoofed in A Handful of Summers (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

The Girl Who Used to Be Me
Music by Marvin Hamlisch
Lyrics by Alan Bergman and Marilyn Bergman
Performed by Patti Austin
Arranged by David Paich
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Finding your own reality
13 April 2007 | by ace-150See all my reviews

I just recommended this movie to a friend who's having her mid-life crisis. Just like Shirley, she can't stop taking care of other people at her own expense. Everyone who reviews this film focuses on its heart-warming qualities, making it sound like Pollyanna. The reality of Shirley Valentine is that it's very grounded in reality. Every moment of the film is fraught with ambiguity, moral and emotional. Shirley's trip to Greece and subsequent adventures are not Hallmark moments. She realizes quite clearly that her fantasies are superimposed on the necessities of reality. She doesn't marry a tycoon: she gets a waitress job. She realizes from the get-go that her relationship with Costas is a good-natured fraud. The ending of the movie doesn't answer any questions except "How does Shirley feel right at this moment in time?" This is not a film about escaping to a fantasy. It's about finding a reality that works for who you really are. Every human being on earth who's dissatisfied with their life should watch this film.


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