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A Serious Man (2009)

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Larry Gopnik, a Midwestern physics teacher, watches his life unravel over multiple sudden incidents. Though seeking meaning and answers amidst his turmoils, he seems to keep sinking.

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 17 wins & 72 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Larry Gopnik
... Uncle Arthur
... Sy Ableman
... Judith Gopnik
... Danny Gopnik
Jessica McManus ... Sarah Gopnik
... Mr. Brandt
Brent Braunschweig ... Mitch Brandt
David Kang ... Clive Park
Benjamin Portnoe ... Danny's Reefer Buddy
Jack Swiler ... Boy on Bus
Andrew S. Lentz ... Cursing Boy on Bus
Jon Kaminski Jr. ... Mike Fagle
... Arlen Finkle
Alan Mandell ... Rabbi Marshak
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Storyline

Bloomington, Minnesota, 1967: Jewish physics lecturer Larry Gopnik is a serious and a very put-upon man. His daughter is stealing from him to save up for a nose job, his pot-head son, who gets stoned at his own bar-mitzvah, only wants him round to fix the TV aerial and his useless brother Arthur is an unwelcome house guest. But both Arthur and Larry get turfed out into a motel when Larry's wife Judy, who wants a divorce, moves her lover, Sy, into the house and even after Sy's death in a car crash they are still there. With lawyers' bills mounting for his divorce, Arthur's criminal court appearances and a land feud with a neighbour Larry is tempted to take the bribe offered by a student to give him an illegal exam pass mark. And the rabbis he visits for advice only dole out platitudes. Still God moves in mysterious - and not always pleasant - ways, as Larry and his family will find out. Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, some sexuality/nudity and brief violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site |  »

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Language:

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Release Date:

6 November 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Un hombre serio  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$251,337, 4 October 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$9,190,525, 1 January 2010
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A law firm called Tuckman Marsh is mentioned at one point. It was also mentioned in the Coens' previous film Burn After Reading (2008). See more »

Goofs

The next-to-last line of Larry's Schrödinger's Cat proof has the square root of 0.077 h-squared, which he writes as 1.74 h. The h is correct, but the root of any number less than 1 is also less than 1. His answer should have been 0.277 h. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Shtetl Husband: What a marvel... what a marvel.
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Crazy Credits

At the end of the credits is a line advising that "No Jews were harmed in the making of this motion picture." See more »

Connections

Featured in The 82nd Annual Academy Awards (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Comin' Back to Me
Written by Marty Balin
Performed by Jefferson Airplane
Courtesy of The RCA Records Label
By arrangement with Sony BMG Music Entertainment
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Bland and trite
13 February 2010 | by See all my reviews

Apparently you need a very good understanding of quantum physics and Judaism to appreciate this movie - maybe Albert Einstein could enjoy it.

For a more average movie viewer lacking both perspectives, it appears like a professor just subject to a fairly awful life quality. He seems to basically live in a harsh world where nobody cares about anyone, from his wife to children and rabbis. And everything that you don't want to happen in life seems to happen to him. If you need some humor on that theme; "Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events" is more appealing, though ridiculous.

It all comes across as bland story not really going anywhere. Then again, if you have the right perspectives for watching this movie, it might come across as brilliant as most reviews on IMDb for this movie are outstanding praise. For the less insightful viewers, like myself, it appears more interesting watching paint dry. The straight forward style of the movie seems a bit like Woody Allen, but less enjoyable.

You need some particular insight to enjoy this movie.


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