An English professor, one year after the sudden death of his boyfriend, is unable to cope with his typical days in 1960s Los Angeles.


Tom Ford


Christopher Isherwood (novel), Tom Ford (written for the screen by) | 1 more credit »
3,167 ( 223)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 39 wins & 57 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Colin Firth ... George
Julianne Moore ... Charley
Nicholas Hoult ... Kenny
Matthew Goode ... Jim
Jon Kortajarena ... Carlos
Paulette Lamori Paulette Lamori ... Alva
Ryan Simpkins ... Jennifer Strunk
Ginnifer Goodwin ... Mrs. Strunk
Teddy Sears ... Mr. Strunk
Paul Butler Paul Butler ... Christopher Strunk
Aaron Sanders ... Tom Strunk
Aline Weber Aline Weber ... Lois
Keri Lynn Pratt ... Blonde Secretary
Jenna Gavigan ... Other Secretary #1
Alicia Carr ... Other Secretary #2


It's November 30, 1962. Native Brit George Falconer, an English professor at a Los Angeles area college, is finding it difficult to cope with life. Jim, his personal partner of sixteen years, died in a car accident eight months earlier when he was visiting with family. Jim's family were not going to tell George of the death or accident, let alone allow him to attend the funeral. This day, George has decided to get his affairs in order before he will commit suicide that evening. As he routinely and fastidiously prepares for the suicide and post suicide, George reminisces about his life with Jim. But George spends this day with various people, who see a man sadder than usual and who affect his own thoughts about what he is going to do. Those people include Carlos, a Spanish immigrant/aspiring actor/gigolo recently arrived in Los Angeles; Charley, his best friend who he knew from England, she who is a drama queen of a woman who romantically desires her best friend despite his sexual ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some disturbing images and nudity/sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


IN the DVD commentary, Tom Ford says that when Jennifer speaks to George in the bank, some of what she says is based on Ford's own childhood. She has a pet scorpion because Ford and his sister had a pet scorpion when they were little. Her older brother is named "Tom" because Ford's first name is Tom. She speaks of her brother Tom giving her hair treatments with eggs because that was something Ford did for his own sister many times. She obliviously says that her brother Tom is "light in his loafers" (a derogatory euphemism for being gay) because Ford is gay. See more »


At the end of the movie, the bandage that Kenny puts on George's forehead doesn't entirely cover the cut. In the next shot, it does. See more »


George: I always used to tell him that only fools could possibly escape the simple truth that now isn't simply now: it's a cold reminder. One day later than yesterday, one year later than last year, and that sooner or later it will come.
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Referenced in The 67th Annual Golden Globe Awards (2010) See more »


George's Waltz 2
Written and Performed by Shigeru Umebayashi
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User Reviews

Artistic Film turns out pretty good
16 July 2014 | by willcundallreviewSee all my reviews

A Single Man is a drama about love, death and also how to deal with these things in your day to day life. The message it shows can be powerful at times in this movie(not always) but still has the heart that a film like this needs to reaffirm "life is worth living". With some great acting seen mainly from it's lead man and an artistic look that we don't always see so much, A Single Man turns out to be solidly pretty good, and here below is why I felt that about it all.

The story is slow and for such a short running time really has to cram everything in, although any longer and I think most would be sick of it. It has a deep core of emotion and you really get this when it is just the main character reflecting on certain events, it can really strike a cord with you and lets you delve into his mind. It also I think likes to deal with the fact that homosexuality was very frowned upon in that era and so the film really smacks the point down that, people then were gay but looked down on also in society.

Colin Firth is very good in this and no doubt why he received an Oscar Nomination, his portrayal is as said emotional yet when he seems most out of it, he deals with getting back to his life well, and Firth fits the mould well. I wasn't too keen in Julianne Moore here, she isn't bad whatsoever but she just seemed to over dramatic and the character maybe is to blame, but her talents are wasted on such an annoying woman. Nicholas Hoult finally brings a bit of new acting styles to the film, but never up stages Firth at any point, Colin controls this all the way through.

Tom Ford the director injects an artistic vision in to this which can at times pay off, but also not do that well, it can very annoying to see the shades of colour used and the sets can seem as if they are too glossy maybe. Hand it to Ford on the writing, he amongst others do well in the script department and even simple actions are done in a way you just know is straight from the page. Although the sets aren't the best, they are unique I will say and some parts look amazing here.

My main criticism is mostly in the sense that the story can be dull at times, very very slow and although Firth never suffers from this, he certainly doesn't gain from the speed. As I also alluded to with the artistic part, the colours and shades used when people are happy and sad make for a very annoying and over used effect which yes, work for the first few times but by the end, it is just too bright in most senses.

Who will like it, well if you want a Drama that deals with life and death then this could be a good one to watch, if you are slightly down in life yourself, this isn't for you as parts can be, well very depressing. It has the odd bit of comedy thrown in, not massive laughs but the odd smile and chuckle and so it can brighten up your day so there's a point for anyone who wants a Drama with both good and bad.

Overall it is Solidly Kind of Good, not quite Good mostly resulting from the more dull parts of the movie. It is far from bad though and in truth, if you want to be an actor, look no further than seeing Colin Firth so in this, truly one of the role models in the modern acting world. One more thing, For anyone who likes the 60's, this could be a great trip back, the sets and settings are truly 60's style and if anything Tom Ford over does the style used throughout the movie.

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Official Sites:

Official Site [France]




English | Spanish

Release Date:

5 February 2010 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Single Man See more »

Filming Locations:

California, USA See more »


Box Office


$7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$217,332, 13 December 2009

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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