29 user 23 critic

Liebestraum (1991)

1:43 | Trailer
The successful writer and professor of architecture Nick Kaminsky returns from New York to Elderstown to visit his biological mother Lillian Anderson Munnsen that is terminal. Nick does not... See full summary »


Mike Figgis


Mike Figgis





Cast overview, first billed only:
Kevin Anderson ... Nick Kaminsky
Pamela Gidley ... Jane Kessler
Bill Pullman ... Paul Kessler
Kim Novak ... Lillian Anderson Munnsen
Graham Beckel ... Sheriff Pete Ricker
Zach Grenier ... Barnard Ralston IV
Thomas Kopache ... Dr. Parker
Anne Lange Anne Lange ... Nurse #1
Jack Wallace ... Mike
Max Perlich ... Orderly #1
Catherine Hicks ... Mary Parker
Taina Elg ... Old Mother Ralston
Tom McDermott ... Night Porter
Joseph McKenna Joseph McKenna ... Day Clerk
Hugh Hurd Hugh Hurd ... Orderly #2


The successful writer and professor of architecture Nick Kaminsky returns from New York to Elderstown to visit his biological mother Lillian Anderson Munnsen that is terminal. Nick does not know Lilian since he was adopted when he was a child but he pays the bill for her to stay in a private room in the hospital. While walking on the street, Nick stumbles upon his former college friend Paul Kessler, who is demolishing with his team an old department store building where a murder and a suicide happened many years ago. While talking to Paul, there is an accident and Nick saves his life. Paul invites Nick to go to the birthday party of his wife Jane Kessler. Nick feels attracted by the building that is built in cast iron and asks Paul to visit it. Meanwhile Jane, who is a photographer, decides to take photos of the same building. They get close to each other and Nick learns that Jane was also adopted. Along the following days, Jane and Nick have a love affair and Nick discloses hidden ... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A story of lust, murder and dreams.


Mystery | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sensuality, and for language | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Kevin Anderson and Pamela Gidley starred in the TV series Skin (2003) twelve years later. See more »


Lillian Anderson Munnsen: [Speaking to her son from a hospital bed] He was so handsome. One night, he came in very late. I was carrying you. I was still awake. He tiptoed in real quiet, so as not to disturb me. So I didn't let on. He slipped into bed, and was asleep in minutes. His hand was there on the pillow, between us. I gently took it, and I began to kiss the fingers. One by one. And I could smell cunt on them...
See more »

Alternate Versions

Director's cut is unrated and contains several minutes of additional footage. This version is available in VHS format. See more »


Written by Franz Liszt
Performed by Earl Bostic and His Orchestra
Courtesy of Highland Music, Inc.
See more »

User Reviews

Kim Novak in Sorrowful Mystery
19 September 2011 | by williwawSee all my reviews

Kim Novak returned to films in this Mike Figgis film. During the shooting there was a lot of PR generated by the legendary star's return to films including an interview with Kim Novak by the Sunday New York times Movie Section, great advance PR for the film. The back story of this movie would have been a better film than what appears on screen. Ms. Novak fought bitterly with Mike Figgis who threatened to cut Kim Novak's part to shreds, and Figgis did. What resulted is a muddled film that stars Kevin Anderson a fine actor whose part must also have been edited. Ditto Bill Pullman. Liebestraum - a brilliant title- makes little sense as a film.

Liebestraum started out as a Warner Bros film but ended up as a MGM film and that once fabled studio was going thru one of its periodic slumps and financial distresses and gave this film a very very limited opening in only two cities Los Angeles and New York. The New York Times favorably reviewed Ms. Novak in its review which should have given MGM and Figgis to open the picture more widely. The mystery here is not the film's murky subject but the fact that Kim Novak a worldwide star and a very under appreciated actress was given so little to do but moan. Novak is seen basically bed ridden and moaning during the film until a shocking windup.

In a purely business observation, Kim Novak was at one time a huge box office draw with films such as Vertigo, Picnic, Bell Book and Candle, Pal Joey, Strangers When We Meet, The Mirror Crack'd et al and MGM and Figgis should have sold this as a Kim Novak return project and they would have made their money back on that. Instead, Kim Novak was ignored by Figgis who in turn ignored this film refusing to do any PR for the project upon its release and sadly this film ended the film career of Kim Novak.

Madonna was supposed to do the female lead but told her then beau Warren Beatty she did not understand the script. Beatty wisely told Madonna if she did not understand the project do not do it. Pam Gidley stepped in to replace Madonna. Wise move on Madonna's part.

9 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 29 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.






Release Date:

November 1991 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Liebestraum See more »

Filming Locations:

New York, USA See more »


Box Office

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Holiday Movies on Prime Video for the Whole Family

Prime Video has you covered this holiday season with movies for the family. Here are some of our picks to get you in the spirit.

Get some picks

Recently Viewed