Based on the book by Toni Morrison, in which a slave is visited by the spirit of a mysterious young woman


Jonathan Demme


Toni Morrison (novel), Akosua Busia (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 23 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Yada Beener Yada Beener ... Denver aged 9
Emil Pinnock Emil Pinnock ... Howard aged 14
Calen Johnson Calen Johnson ... Buglar aged 13
Oprah Winfrey ... Sethe
Beah Richards ... Baby Suggs
Danny Glover ... Paul D
Kimberly Elise ... Denver
Jude Ciccolella ... Schoolteacher
Kessia Embry Kessia Embry ... Amy Denver (as Kessia Kordelle)
Dashiell Eaves ... Schoolteacher's Nephew
LisaGay Hamilton ... Younger Sethe (as Lisa Gay Hamilton)
Tyler Hinson Tyler Hinson ... Baby Beloved
Brian Hooks ... Young Paul D
Hill Harper ... Halle
Thandiwe Newton ... Beloved (as Thandie Newton)


Haunted by so many painful and well-hidden secrets, the former slave, Sethe, is bent on turning over a new leaf, and finding freedom for the sake of her children. Out of the blue, as Sethe struggles to grapple with her troubled past in her humble home somewhere in post-Civil-War Cincinnati, Paul D, an old familiar from the Kentucky farm euphemistically called Sweet Home, re-enters Sethe's life, eager to lend her a hand. Then, a stranger arrives in the shape of a mysterious young woman, giving rise to a series of repressed memories. But, who's that feral girl? Can Paul D help Sethe reinvent herself? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The past has a life of its own.


Drama | History | Horror

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violent images, sexuality and nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


A subplot in the novel, but omitted from the film, suggests that Beloved might actually be a missing woman from a nearby town, who was tortured and imprisoned by a white man. The subplot underscored Sethe's need for Beloved to be her reincarnated daughter. See more »


Beloved wears contact lenses. See more »


Beloved: Where your diamonds?
Sethe: Diamonds? What would I be doing with diamonds?
Beloved: On your ears.
Sethe: Wish I did. Come to think of it, I had some crystal once. Present from the lady I used to work for.
Beloved: Tell me. Tell me your diamonds.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In lieu of traditional opening credits, the movie begins with the camera moving through a cemetery to focus on a gravestone engraved with the sole word "BELOVED". See more »

Alternate Versions

In the version aired on television there is a deleted scene and two alternate scenes. The TV version also removes any mention of Sethe's sons. They don't exist in the TV version. The first alternate scene is when Paul D is telling Sethe about Halle being in the loft. In the theatrical you see Paul D quoting Halle. In the TV version there is a flashback to Halle (Hill Harper) saying "The loft." The second alternate scene in the prayer group discussing how to deal with Sethe being haunted by Beloved. In the theatrical there is a line about Sethe being like batter. In the Tv version that is removed and there is a line inserted from another woman saying "I don't mind a little communication between worlds but this is invasion" and another character says "we better get to work and pray" The deleted scene added for the TV version has Stamp Paid asking Paul D if beloved is his problem and not what Sethe did. See more »


Featured in Tosh.0: Tron Guy (2009) See more »


Complaint Call
Arranged and Performed by Enoch Brown
Courtesy of Smithsonian Folkways Recordings
See more »

User Reviews

what the hell was with that?
8 November 1998 | by yrralSee all my reviews


now i've seen a lot of bad movies, this wasn't really that bad a movie, the acting was pretty good, the story was interesting and the general feeling of the movie was okay.

normally i'm pretty forgiving about technical glitches and it's other people who complain about it, but i swear i spent more time trying to spot the mic or the boom then i did watching the movie! it was bad bad bad! and then, just to top it all off nicely, there was a 10 second scene of a deer in a field, only the top third of the screen was a road with cars driving by!?!?!?! this is supposed to be 1873 (or something...) what's with the cars?

did *ANYONE* actually watch this movie before they released it? i'm embarrased for oprah and danny glover that their names were on it... sheesh. i hope someone got fired over this, cause other wise it would have only been a sorta crappy movie.

and why isn't everyone else commenting on this either... there are all the comments about the movie... but no one noticed the cars? this wasn't subtle or anything.



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Frequently Asked Questions

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Release Date:

16 October 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Beloved See more »


Box Office


$80,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,165,551, 18 October 1998

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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