6.6/10
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84 user 28 critic

Total Eclipse (1995)

Trailer
1:46 | Trailer
Young, wild poet Arthur Rimbaud and his mentor Paul Verlaine engage in a fierce, forbidden romance while feeling the effects of a hellish artistic lifestyle.

Director:

Agnieszka Holland

Writer:

Christopher Hampton (screenplay)
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Leonardo DiCaprio ... Arthur Rimbaud
David Thewlis ... Paul Verlaine
Romane Bohringer ... Mathilde Maute
Dominique Blanc ... Isabelle Rimbaud
Félicie Pasotti Félicie Pasotti ... Isabelle, as a child (as Felicie Pasotti Cabarbaye)
Nita Klein Nita Klein ... Rimbaud's Mother
James Thierrée James Thierrée ... Frederic (as James Thiérrée)
Emmanuelle Oppo Emmanuelle Oppo ... Vitalie
Denise Chalem Denise Chalem ... Mrs. Maute De Fleurville
Andrzej Seweryn ... Mr. Maute De Fleurville
Christopher Thompson Christopher Thompson ... Carjat
Bruce Van Barthold ... Aicard
Christopher Chaplin ... Charles Cros
Christopher Hampton ... The Judge
Mathias Jung Mathias Jung ... Andre
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Storyline

In 1871, Paul Verlaine (1844-1896), an established poet, invites boy genius Arthur Rimbaud (1854-1891) to live with Paul and his young pregnant wife, Mathiltde, in her father's home in Paris. Rimbaud's uncouth behavior disrupts the household as well as the insular society of French poets, but Verlaine finds the youth invigorating. Stewed in absinthe and resentment, Verlaine abuses Mathiltde; he and Rimbaud become lovers and abandon her. There are reconciliations and partings with Mathiltde and partings and reconciliations with Rimbaud, until an 1873 incident with a pistol sends one of them to prison. Codas dramatize the poets' final meeting and last illnesses. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Impassioned by genius. Inflamed by desire. Imprisoned by love. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexuality and nudity, language, and some startling violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Volker Schlöndorff was originally attached to direct. See more »

Goofs

In the Café Andre where the adult Isabelle Rimbaud meets with Paul Verlaine, the typeface on the window is clearly in Helvetica, a typeface that was not created until 1954. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Paul Verlaine: Sometimes he speaks in a kind of tender dialect of the death which causes repentence, of the unhappy men who certainly exist, of painful tasks and heartrending departures. In the hovels where we got drunk he wept looking at those who surrounded us, the cattle of poverty. He lifted up drunks in the black streets. He had the pity a bad mother has for small children. He moved with the grace of a little girl at catechism. He pretended to know about everything, business, art, medicine. ...
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Soundtracks

Memory
Written by T.S. Eliot
Composed by Trevor Nunn and Andrew Lloyd Webber
Arranged by Jan A.P. Kaczmarek
Performed by Warsaw Symphony Orchestra and Wilanow String Quartet
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User Reviews

I agree with Andy below
7 July 1999 | by Mag-13See all my reviews

Arthur Rimbaud was famous for what? For changing the face of French and possibly all modern poetry. At the age of 17. Do we see any of this in the movie? No. We have a director who thinks that being gay was Rimbaud's muse. All through the film, I kept wondering, "when are they going to let him read his poetry, and show us WHY it was important, HOW it contrasted with conventional poetry at the time?" I mean, if you're brave enough to try to sell graphic homosexual scenes to a Merchant Ivory audience, then why not be brave enough to "bore" us with some literary analysis?


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Details

Official Sites:

Fine Line Features

Country:

UK | France | Belgium

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 November 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Total Eclipse See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$8,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$131,269, 5 November 1995

Gross USA:

$340,139

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$340,139
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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