6.5/10
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187 user 62 critic

Death Becomes Her (1992)

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When a woman learns of an immortality treatment, she sees it as a way to outdo her long-time rival.

Director:

Robert Zemeckis
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Popularity
2,141 ( 337)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Meryl Streep ... Madeline Ashton
Bruce Willis ... Ernest Menville
Goldie Hawn ... Helen Sharp
Isabella Rossellini ... Lisle Von Rhuman
Ian Ogilvy ... Chagall
Adam Storke ... Dakota
Nancy Fish ... Rose
Alaina Reed-Hall ... Psychologist (as Alaina Reed Hall)
Michelle Johnson ... Anna
Mary Ellen Trainor ... Vivian Adams
William Frankfather ... Mr. Franklin
John Ingle ... Eulogist
Clement von Franckenstein ... Opening Man
Petrea Burchard ... Opening Woman
Jim Jansen ... Second Man
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Storyline

In 1978, in Broadway, the decadent and narcissist actress Madeline Ashton is performing Songbird, based on Tennessee Williams' Sweet Bird of Youth. Then she receives her rival Helen Sharp, who is an aspiring writer, and her fiancé Ernest Menville, who is a plastic surgeon, in her dressing-room. Soon Menville calls off his commitment with Helen and marries Madeline. Seven years later, Helen is obese in a psychiatric hospital and obsessed in seeking revenge on Madeline. In 1992, the marriage of Madeline and Menville is finished and he is no longer a surgeon but an alcoholic caretaker. Out of the blue, they are invited to a party where Helen will release her novel Forever Young and Madeline goes to a beauty shop. The owner gives a business card of the specialist in rejuvenation Lisle Von Rhuman to her. When the envious Madeline sees Helen thin in a perfect shape, she decides to seek out Lisle and buys a potion to become young again. Further, she advises that Madeline must take care of ... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Some people will go to any lengths to stay young forever. But Madeline Ashton and her old friend Helen Sharp are about to go TOO far. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Fantasy | Horror

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some nudity and off-color humor | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

31 July 1992 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La muerte le sienta bien See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$55,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$58,422,650

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$149,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Robert Zemeckis: [citation] The shots in the psychiatric clinic where Helen is brought look exactly like those in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975). See more »

Goofs

When Helen gets out of the fountain after being shot, she is soaking wet from head to toe. Just a few minutes later when she and Madeline engage in their shovel battle, Helen's hair is completely dry. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Opening Man: [leaving the theatre in the rain] Can you believe that? A musical version of "Sweet Bird of Youth."Who are they kidding?
Opening Woman: Thank God you wanted to leave...
Second Woman: Can you believe Madeline Ashton? Talk about waking the dead.
Second Man: I gotta get a drink...
[zoom in on discarded playbill featuring Madeline Ashton]
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Connections

References Singin' in the Rain (1952) See more »

Soundtracks

Bridal Chorus
(uncredited)
Written by Richard Wagner
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User Reviews

 
It just gets funnier every time I watch it
20 October 2003 | by leonardpetchSee all my reviews

I love this movie and have watched it more than any other film I own. What makes it for me is the subtle face acting of the two leads whose comic timing is perfect. Meryl Streep and Goldie Hawn have never been so good (plus this is the only film in which Bruce Willis doesn't do his trademark smirk even once).

Every role is played to perfection and the script is a comedy work of art.

I won't bother defending it to those people who need their jokes hammered home to them by comedy actors whose only way of getting a laugh is to gurn and fart. Each to their own.


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