7.8/10
60,893
194 user 67 critic

The Remains of the Day (1993)

Trailer
0:31 | Trailer
A butler who sacrificed body and soul to service in the years leading up to World War II realizes too late how misguided his loyalty was to his lordly employer.

Director:

James Ivory

Writers:

Kazuo Ishiguro (novel), Ruth Prawer Jhabvala (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
3,594 ( 684)
Nominated for 8 Oscars. Another 17 wins & 32 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Howards End (1992)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A businessman thwarts his wife's bequest of an estate to another woman.

Director: James Ivory
Stars: Anthony Hopkins, Emma Thompson, Vanessa Redgrave
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

In a Florence pensione circa 1900 with English guests, George Emerson (Julian Sands) and his dad (Denholm Elliott) offer their rooms with views to Lucy Honeychurch (Helena Bonham Carter) and her chaperone, Charlotte Bartlett (Dame Maggie Smith). Lucy and George get acquainted, but Lucy returns to England. George and Lucy meet again, but now she's engaged.

Director: James Ivory
Stars: Maggie Smith, Helena Bonham Carter, Denholm Elliott
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Rich Mr. Dashwood (Tom Wilkinson) dies, leaving his second wife and her three daughters poor by the rules of inheritance. The two eldest daughters are the title opposites.

Director: Ang Lee
Stars: Emma Thompson, Kate Winslet, James Fleet
Shadowlands (1993)
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

C.S. Lewis, a world-renowned Christian theologian, writer and professor, leads a passionless life until he meets spirited poet Joy Gresham from the U.S.

Director: Richard Attenborough
Stars: Anthony Hopkins, Debra Winger, Julian Fellowes
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A tale of nineteenth-century New York high society in which a young lawyer falls in love with a woman separated from her husband, while he is engaged to the woman's cousin.

Director: Martin Scorsese
Stars: Daniel Day-Lewis, Michelle Pfeiffer, Winona Ryder
Maurice (1987)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

After his lover rejects him, a young man trapped by the oppressiveness of Edwardian society tries to come to terms with and accept his sexuality.

Director: James Ivory
Stars: James Wilby, Rupert Graves, Hugh Grant
My Left Foot (1989)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Christy Brown, born with cerebral palsy, learns to paint and write with his only controllable limb - his left foot.

Director: Jim Sheridan
Stars: Daniel Day-Lewis, Brenda Fricker, Alison Whelan
The Piano (1993)
Drama | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

In the mid-19th century, a mute woman is sent to New Zealand along with her young daughter and prized piano for an arranged marriage to a wealthy landowner, but is soon lusted after by a local worker on the plantation.

Director: Jane Campion
Stars: Holly Hunter, Harvey Keitel, Sam Neill
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Sophie is the survivor of Nazi concentration camps, who has found a reason to live with Nathan, a sparkling if unsteady American Jew obsessed with the Holocaust.

Director: Alan J. Pakula
Stars: Meryl Streep, Kevin Kline, Peter MacNicol
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

True story of a transatlantic business correspondence about used books that developed into a close friendship.

Director: David Hugh Jones
Stars: Anne Bancroft, Anthony Hopkins, Judi Dench
The Insider (1999)
Biography | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A research chemist comes under personal and professional attack when he decides to appear in a 60 Minutes (1968) exposé on Big Tobacco.

Director: Michael Mann
Stars: Russell Crowe, Al Pacino, Christopher Plummer
Ray I (2004)
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The story of the life and career of the legendary rhythm and blues musician Ray Charles, from his humble beginnings in the South, where he went blind at age seven, to his meteoric rise to stardom during the 1950s and 1960s.

Director: Taylor Hackford
Stars: Jamie Foxx, Regina King, Kerry Washington
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Haycraft John Haycraft ... Auctioneer
Christopher Reeve ... Lewis
Anthony Hopkins ... Stevens
Emma Thompson ... Miss Kenton
Caroline Hunt Caroline Hunt ... Landlady
James Fox ... Lord Darlington
Peter Vaughan ... Father
Paula Jacobs Paula Jacobs ... Mrs. Mortimer, the Cook
Ben Chaplin ... Charlie, Head Footman
Steve Dibben ... George, Second Footman
Abigail Hopkins ... Housemaid (as Abigail Harrison)
Patrick Godfrey ... Spencer
Peter Cellier ... Sir Leonard Bax
Peter Halliday ... Canon Tufnell
Hugh Grant ... Cardinal
Edit

Storyline

Rule bound head butler Stevens' (Sir Anthony Hopkins') world of manners and decorum in the household he maintains is tested by the arrival of housekeeper Miss Kenton (Dame Emma Thompson), who falls in love with him in pre-World War II Britain. The possibility of romance and his master's cultivation of ties with the Nazi cause challenge his carefully maintained veneer of servitude. Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for themes | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA | UK

Language:

English | French | German

Release Date:

19 November 1993 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Remains of the Day See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,528,982, 7 November 1993

Gross USA:

$23,237,911

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$23,237,911
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby SR (35 mm prints)| SDDS (35 mm prints)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

By bringing together the most outstanding features of some of England's finest country houses, Merchant Ivory Productions created a single imaginary setting of quintessential beauty, the perfect backdrop to a compelling drama. Not one, but four of England's greatest country houses were used in the creation of Darlington Hall for this movie. They were scouted for the movie by Architectural Historian Joe Friedman, who had acted as location scout on previous Merchant Ivory Productions such as Maurice (1987), Howards End (1992), and Mr. & Mrs. Bridge (1990) for the Paris scenes. See more »

Goofs

When Mr. Stevens arrives in the market town on his way to Clevedon, a modern "National Westminster Bank" sign is seen on a building in the background as he is getting his case out of the car. See more »

Quotes

Reginald Cardinal: You remember that American, Stevens, calling Lord Darlington an Amateur? Well he was right, Stevens. He was damn right.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Nostalgia Critic: To Boldly Flee: Part VIII (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Roll Along Prairie Moon
Composed by Ted Fio Rito, Albert von Tilzer and Harry MacPherson
Performed by Gracie Fields
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
The best story of unrequited love in cinema history.
30 July 2003 | by sdillon-1See all my reviews

This is, in my opinion, the finest film in the Merchant Ivory canon. And to hail it as such is to grossly undersell it. It is not only that but also the best story of unrequited love in cinema history, and a masterpiece of understated emotion. It also boasts some of the finest performances ever put on film, most notably from the peerless Anthony Hopkins.

Then again, understatement is the key to this film. Writer Ruth Prawer Jhabvala and Director James Ivory adapt Kazuo Ishiguro's poignant novel with such delicacy that it gets under ones skin in a deeply profound way difficult to express in a few words.

The plot opens in the 1950's as meticulous and emotionally repressed butler Stevens (Anthony Hopkins) reviews a lifetime of service in Darlington Hall. The story flashes back to the 1930's where Stevens formed a close friendship with housekeeper Miss Kenton (Emma Thompson). This relationship grew slowly over several years and ultimately the pair developed romantic feelings for one another, although neither admitted it. Whilst all this was happening, Steven's employer Lord Darlington (Edward Fox) gradually became a misguided Nazi sympathiser in pre-war Europe. Unfortunately, loyalty to his master caused Stevens to reject the delicate advances of Miss Kenton. History took its inevitable course, and Darlington's involvement in appeasement contributed to the outbreak of World War II. Now Stevens realises he made a mistake and wants to make amends.

To describe Anthony Hopkins as brilliant is completely redundant. His turn here goes way beyond mere acting, and it was criminal he was denied the Oscar at the 1994 Academy awards. Stevens absurdly repressed personality gently takes the audience from laughter to tears in the most emotionally devastating finale I have ever seen. Hopkin's mesmerising performance is matched by a career-best turn from Emma Thompson. The supporting cast is uniformly superb, including a pre-Four Weddings Hugh Grant and Christopher Reeve in one of his last roles before the accident that paralysed him.

Needless to say, the cinematography, music, editing and art direction are immaculate. The understated beauty of the English countryside that was so important to the book translates brilliantly to film here.

This is a lovely, melancholic film, which effortlessly embraces complex themes such as misguided loyalty, dignity, pride, wasted lives, and unrequited love. It would be all too much to bear if it weren't for the film's genuine good-humoured understanding of English culture (all the more remarkable for having been initially penned by a Japanese author). In fact, humour is an important element in the film. There are many laugh-out-loud moments, which make the tragic part of the story all the more real and poignant. All in all, The Remains of the Day is a milestone film – an unforgettable tragedy of a man who pays the terrible price of denying his own feelings.


189 of 211 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 194 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series



Recently Viewed