6.8/10
4,231
62 user 47 critic

The Luzhin Defence (2000)

PG-13 | | Drama, Romance | 8 September 2000 (UK)
Trailer
2:08 | Trailer
Two worlds collide when an eccentric genius falls in love with a strong-willed society beauty.

Director:

Marleen Gorris

Writers:

Vladimir Nabokov (novel), Peter Berry (screenplay by)
3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Turturro ... Luzhin
Emily Watson ... Natalia
Geraldine James ... Vera
Stuart Wilson ... Valentinov
Christopher Thompson Christopher Thompson ... Stassard
Fabio Sartor ... Turati
Peter Blythe ... Ilya
Orla Brady ... Anna
Mark Tandy ... Luzhin's Father
Kelly Hunter ... Luzhin's Mother
Alexander Hunting Alexander Hunting ... Young Luzhin
Alfredo Pea Alfredo Pea ... 1st Official
Fabio Pasquini Fabio Pasquini ... 2nd Official
Luigi Petrucci Luigi Petrucci ... Santucci
Carlo Greco Carlo Greco ... Hotel Manager
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Storyline

Set in the late 1920s, The Luzhin Defence tells the story of a shambling, unworldly chess Grand Master who arrives in the Italian Lakes to play the match of his life and unexpectedly finds the love of his life. Discovering his prodigious talent in boyhood overshadowed by his parents' failing marriage, Luzhin's lyrical passion for chess has become his refuge and rendered the real world a phantom. Already matched up by her family to the very suitable Comte de Stassard, when Natalia meets Luzhin, she is drawn to the erratic genius and offers him a glimpse outside of his chess obsession. But it is a world he is not equipped to deal with and his two worlds collide to tragic effect. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

His love dictates every move.

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sensuality and thematic elements | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Goofs

In his game as white against an unnamed opponent before the final, Luzhin is shown supposedly checkmating with Rd1-d8, which is an illegal move because his rook at d1 is pinned against his king on h1 by black's rook at c1. See more »

Quotes

Aleksandr Ivanovich Luzhin: As Pushkin's doomed duelist said, "Let's start if you're willing."
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Soundtracks

Waltz 2
from "Suite for Jazz Orchestra No. 2"
Composed by Dmitri Shostakovich (as Dimitri Shostakovich)
Performed by Koninklijk Concertgebouworkest (as Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra)
Conducted by Riccardo Chailly
By permission of Boosey & Hawkes Licensing
Courtesy of Decca Record Label Ltd.
Under license from Universal Special Markets
(p) 1992 Decca Records
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User Reviews

Have they read the novel at all?!!
26 March 2002 | by andreylavSee all my reviews

Albeit excellent in cinematography and actors' work, the movie stunned me by its almost complete unrelatedness to the famous (and one of the best) novel by Vladimir Nabokov. All the plot lines are put topsy-turvy, the spectacular intricacy of the plot is revealed in a straight line and all the intellectual play of Nabokov with the reader (false clues, not telling the reader the main character's first and middle name until the very last page of the novel, etc) are all gone from the film. The movie's ending is hilariously hollywoodish (and, of course, has nothing to do with the novel again). In one word, one can watch it if one hates Nabokov and has a penchant for twisted originals.


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Details

Country:

UK | France

Language:

English | Italian

Release Date:

8 September 2000 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

The Luzhin Defense See more »

Filming Locations:

Hungary See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$63,203, 22 April 2001

Gross USA:

$1,053,070

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,873,620
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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