1938. Julia Lambert (Annette Bening) and Michael Gosselyn (Jeremy Irons) are the royal couple of the London theater scene, Julia, an actress, and Michael, a former actor, who took over running the theater and its troupe after the death of their mentor, Jimmy Langton (Sir Michael Gambon). Jimmy is still constantly with Julia in spirit as she navigates through life. Besides their work, Julia and Michael lead largely separate lives, they, long ago having stopped a sexual relationship. Julia of late has been feeling disenchanted with her life, she not wanting to admit it's because she is approaching middle age. Her disenchantments manifests itself in wanting Michael to close their current production early so that she can recharge her juices, something he is reluctant to do if only for not wanting to let the theater sit empty. What Julia ends up doing instead is embarking on an affair with Tom Fennel (Shaun Evans), an adoring young American who is young enough to be her son. As Julia and ...Written by
Evie (Juliet Stevenson), Julia's (Annette Bening's) maid, insinuates that Dolly de Vries (Miriam Margolyes) may be a lesbian for always visiting during Julia's massages. This may be an in-joke, as Margolyes has been with her partner, Heather Sutherland, since 1968. See more »
When Tom first dances with Julia in a nightclub, he is clearly seen wearing a square-faced wristwatch. This is the Cartier given to him a few scenes later by Julia. He shouldn't be wearing a watch at all in this early scene, having pawned his own round-faced watch to pay for the night's entertainment. See more »
Anyone who enjoys the catty, female-driven movies of old (All About Eve, The Women, et. al.) and bemoans the idea that they don't make 'em like they used to should see "Being Julia." Annette Bening is at her best when she's *not* playing saints, and while Julia isn't nearly as awful as the roles she played in "The Grifters" or "American Beauty," she's wicked enough to delight throughout (and vulnerable enough to garner sympathy).
Most of the reviews and award nominations associated with this film will likely heap loads of praise on Annette Bening and little else. She is in nearly every scene, so it's hard to separate her performance from anything else -- and while she is brilliant; the story, direction, costumes, cinematography, art direction, and supporting performances are equally worthy of praise.
Every once in a while, they make one like they used to.
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