7.8/10
157,845
336 user 147 critic
After a famous author is rescued from a car crash by a fan of his novels, he comes to realize that the care he is receiving is only the beginning of a nightmare of captivity and abuse.

Director:

Rob Reiner

Writers:

Stephen King (novel), William Goldman (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
937 ( 43)

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
James Caan ... Paul Sheldon
Kathy Bates ... Annie Wilkes
Richard Farnsworth ... Buster
Frances Sternhagen ... Virginia
Lauren Bacall ... Marcia Sindell
Graham Jarvis ... Libby
Jerry Potter Jerry Potter ... Pete
Thomas Brunelle Thomas Brunelle ... Anchorman (as Tom Brunelle)
June Christopher ... Anchorwoman
Julie Payne Julie Payne ... Reporter #1
Archie Hahn ... Reporter #2 (as Archie Hahn III)
Gregory Snegoff ... Reporter #3
Wendy Bowers Wendy Bowers ... Waitress
Misery the Pig ... Herself
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Storyline

Best-selling novelist Paul Sheldon is on his way home from his Colorado hideaway after completing his latest book, when he crashes his car in a freak blizzard. Paul is critically injured, but is rescued by former nurse Annie Wilkes, Paul's "number one fan", who takes Paul back to her remote house in the mountains (without bothering to tell anybody). Unfortunately for Paul, Annie is also a headcase. When she discovers that Paul has killed off the heroine in her favorite novels, her reaction leaves Paul shattered (literally)... Written by Andrew Backhouse (andback74)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Paul Sheldon used to write for a living. Now, he's writing to stay alive. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 November 1990 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Miseria See more »

Filming Locations:

Truckee, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$10,076,834, 2 December 1990, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$61,276,872
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In 1991, Kathy Bates became the first woman to win an Oscar for Best Actress in a horror or thriller for her role as Annie Wilkes. The first performer to win an Oscar for a horror film was Fredric March for his performance as the title character in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1931). The only other winners for acting in a horror film were Ruth Gordon for her performance as Mia Farrow's new neighbor with a hidden agenda in Rosemary's Baby (1968) (Best Actress in a Supporting Role), Anthony Hopkins and Jodie Foster for Best Actor and Best Actress in The Silence of the Lambs (1991), and Natalie Portman for Best Actress in Black Swan (2010). See more »

Goofs

Near the end, Paul pokes Annie in the eyes and makes her bleed, but in the next shot when she's on the floor, there is no blood under her eyes. See more »

Quotes

[Annie has just read Paul's latest novel]
Annie Wilkes: YOU! YOU DIRTY BIRD, HOW COULD YOU!
Paul Sheldon: What?
Annie Wilkes: She can't be dead, MISERY CHASTAIN CANNOT BE DEAD!
Paul Sheldon: Annie, in 1871, women often died during childbirth. But her SPIRIT is the important thing, and Misery's spirit is still alive.
Annie Wilkes: I DON'T WANT HER SPIRIT! I WANT HER! AND YOU MURDERED HER!
Paul Sheldon: No... I didn't.
Annie Wilkes: WHO DID?
Paul Sheldon: No one! She... she died! She just slipped away!
Annie Wilkes: SLIPPED AWAY! SLIPPED AWAY? SHE DIDN'T JUST SLIP AWAY! YOU DID IT! YOU DID IT! YOU DID IT! YOU MURDERED MY...
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Crazy Credits

Misery the Pig - Herself See more »

Connections

Referenced in Dreamcatcher (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

TCHAIKOVSKY PIANO CONCERTO #1
Written by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performed by Liberace
Courtesy of CBS Records, Music Licensing Department
Arranged by Liberace
Published by AVI Music Publishing Group
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Don't EVER have a Number 1 fan...
7 January 2006 | by sngbrd39See all my reviews

Horror movies generally aren't my cup of tea, but people have always talked about how great Misery is. So I decided to give it a look when it came on TV today. All I can say is that I was definitely not disappointed; this was an amazing movie.

Misery is the story of writer Paul Sheldon (James Caan), who is driving through a snowstorm after just having finished his newest novel. The car crashes, and it seems that Paul will die, trapped in his car in the snow in a deserted forest, when he is rescued by a mysterious stranger. She turns out to be Annie Wilkes (Kathy Bates), a former nurse who dresses his wounds and gives him a comfortable bed. In addition, it turns out that Annie is Paul's self-proclaimed Number 1 Fan. Specifically, she is obsessed with the Misery Chastain series, Paul's major claim to fame. Annie keeps Paul in an isolated room for days, then weeks, as the outside world searches for him. Eventually, when Annie objects to the content of Paul's latest manuscript, and when she has a hysterical reaction to the death of Misery in the latest novel, Paul (and the audience) come to see that there may be something wrong with Annie.

Caan and Bates were absolutely stunning in their performances. The vast majority of this movie focused on them, so it was crucial that they both be able to convey the sense that something horrific was going on. It was no surprise that Kathy Bates won the Best Actress Oscar for her role. Everything in this movie really worked to show just how trapped Paul was, and how hopeless his situation seemed. And of course, this movie left a few indelible images in the mind. (One in particular comes to mind, and I really wish that I hadn't seen that scene previously on some other TV show; that almost took away from the impact of seeing it in context.) So, if you are a fan of suspenseful fare, or you just want to see a horror movie (mostly) sans blood and guts, Misery is for you. You will never, ever want to hear anyone say that they're a fan of yours again.


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