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About Schmidt (2002)

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A man upon retirement, embarks on a journey to his estranged daughter's wedding, only to discover more about himself and life than he ever expected.

Director:

Alexander Payne

Writers:

Louis Begley (novel), Alexander Payne (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 25 wins & 69 nominations. See more awards »

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Director: Alexander Payne
Stars: George Clooney, Shailene Woodley, Amara Miller
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jack Nicholson ... Warren Schmidt
Kathy Bates ... Roberta Hertzel
Hope Davis ... Jeannie Schmidt
Dermot Mulroney ... Randall Hertzel
June Squibb ... Helen Schmidt
Howard Hesseman ... Larry Hertzel
Harry Groener ... John Rusk
Connie Ray ... Vicki Rusk
Len Cariou ... Ray Nichols
Mark Venhuizen Mark Venhuizen ... Duncan Hertzel
Cheryl Hamada Cheryl Hamada ... Saundra
Phil Reeves ... Minister in Denver
Matt Winston ... Gary Nordin - Warren's Replacement
James M. Connor ... Randall's Best Man (as James Micheal Connor)
Jill Anderson Jill Anderson ... Bridesmaid Reading St. Paul
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Storyline

Warren Schmidt has led a safe, predictable life working in the insurance industry in Omaha, Nebr. for many years, yet now faces retirement. At the same time he is forced to take a hard look at his wife, his life and his relationship with his estranged daughter. An often hilarious series of events follow as Schmidt embarks on an unpredictable RV journey to attend his daughter's wedding in Denver. Written by wacoastguy

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Schmidt Happens

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some language and brief nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 January 2003 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Las confesiones del Sr. Schmidt See more »

Filming Locations:

Nebraska, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$282,367, 15 December 2002, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$65,016,287

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$105,834,556
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

New Line Cinema,Avery Pix See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Scenes taking place at the University of Kansas, were shot at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. See more »

Goofs

The Tony Roma's restaurant where the rehearsal dinner is held, is (was, it's now closed), in Omaha, Nebraska, not Denver where the event was held. See more »

Quotes

Larry Hertzel: All I was doing was welcoming somebody into the family.
Roberta Hertzel: Larry, we've been welcomed by you, thank you so much, now would you please just drink your fucking milk and shut the fuck up.
See more »

Connections

References Batman (1989) See more »

Soundtracks

Quatrième Gnossienne
Written by Erik Satie
Performed by Aldo Ciccolini
Courtesy of EMI Records
Under license from EMI-Capitol Music Special Markets
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Great note on appreciating what you have while still have it
28 November 2003 | by jbonzonSee all my reviews

This is an inspiring story. It teaches me so much about what is important in life. Jack Nicholson, with a great performance as Warren R. Schmidt is an example of an American middle class after retiring. For many years he has worked as an actuary at a big insurance company. After retiring, Jack at home, while watching television, he decides to sponsor a six years old boy (Ndugu) from Tanzania. Sending a check of US$ 22,00 every month, he is also required to write a letter to the boy. In the process of writing these letters, he vents out to the boy about his life frustrations, his lost dreams and the dilemma he is in. He is married for forty-two years with his wife Helen (June Squibb) and he has a daughter living in Denver, Jeannie Schmidt (Hope Davis) who will marry a looser pretty soon. He misses his daughter. A few days after his retirement, his wife dies, and Jack realizes how important the wife was in his life now even though he never appreciated her. The director of the movie, Alexander Payne takes the audiences with Jack on a trip in a trailer to visit specific places in America. He mainly makes Jack visit the places where he has been before physically but at the same time Jack was revisiting his own life inside. In this trip he realizes what really matters in life - friendship, family and sharing- then why it is important to appreciate them whenever you have a chance.

In 'Citizen Kane' (1941), the director Orson Welles portrays the same idea when creating Mr. Kane. The movie is more than the story of a tycoon's rise and fall; it is an account of what is ultimately important in a person's life. Even though Kane attains riches and prestige, he is far from happy. He ends with two failed marriages and few friends. At his dying bed, all he has left is his reminiscences - and something called "Rosebud." In 'About Schmidt' the director Alexander Payne uses voiceover to convey Jack's thoughts and memories throughout the movie. To be specific it is when Jack is writing a letter to the boy he sponsors - (Ndugu), at the same time Payne is informing the audience about Jack's regrets and pain concerning his wife and daughter while the movie is still rolling on. I think this is a great technique.I believe this has been a great adventure and wake up call to many Americans as to what is important in life and why we should cherish every moment of it.


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