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Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle (1994)

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Dorothy Parker remembers the heyday of the Algonquin Round Table, a circle of friends whose barbed wit, like hers, was fueled by alcohol and flirted with despair.

Director:

Alan Rudolph
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jennifer Jason Leigh ... Dorothy Parker
Campbell Scott ... Robert Benchley
Matthew Broderick ... Charles MacArthur
Peter Gallagher ... Alan Campbell
Jennifer Beals ... Gertrude Benchley
Andrew McCarthy ... Eddie Parker
Wallace Shawn ... Horatio Byrd
Martha Plimpton ... Jane Grant
Sam Robards ... Harold Ross
Lili Taylor ... Edna Ferber
James Le Gros ... Deems Taylor (as James LeGros)
Gwyneth Paltrow ... Paula Hunt
Nick Cassavetes ... Robert Sherwood
David Thornton ... George S. Kaufman
Heather Graham ... Mary Kennedy Taylor
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Storyline

Dorothy Parker remembers the heyday of the Algonquin Round Table, a circle of friends whose barbed wit, like hers, was fueled by alcohol and flirted with despair. Written by Cleo <frede005@maroon.tc.umn.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

At the center of the circle is a woman ahead of her time. See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Canada

Language:

English

Release Date:

23 November 1994 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mrs. Parker and Mr. Benchley See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$74,512, 27 November 1994, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$2,144,667
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Peter Benchley, the grandson of humorist and featured character Robert Benchley, plays editor Frank Crowninshield. See more »

Quotes

Dorothy Parker: Razors pain you, rivers are damp, acids stain you, drugs cause cramp. Guns aren't lawful, nooses give, gas smells awful; you might as well live.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Dinner for Five: Episode #1.3 (2002) See more »

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User Reviews

Mrs. Parker's isn't the ONLY side of this story
28 November 2001 | by enigmannSee all my reviews

While watching this film last night on IFC, I found myself appreciating the social, historical and artistic subject matter. Despite Mrs. Parker's obvious and overwhelming psychological dysfunctions, I felt this was a genuine "true to life" expression of one participant's subjective experiences. This was a unique, if not quite legendary, circle of literary talent -- certainly deserving of serious cinematic treatment such as this.

BUT....

There was another side to the story -- a healthier, less appalling, less depressing side. To discover "the rest of the story", I highly recommend Harpo Marx' autobiography "Harpo Speaks". Although Harpo also recalls the scathing insults and practical jokes that were a central part of the story of this Round Table group, his book relates a number of hugely funny and sometimes heart-warming scenes that indicate that at least some of these people truly cared for each other and expressed strong positive feelings in many different settings. In short, Harpo's stories (e.g. several "croquet fanatic" episodes) offer a telling comedic counterpoint to Mrs. Parker's almost continually cynical and self-pitying pathos. Read Harpo's book to balance out the negative. You'll be glad you did.


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