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Nebraska (2013)

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An aging, booze-addled father makes the trip from Montana to Nebraska with his estranged son in order to claim a million-dollar Mega Sweepstakes Marketing prize.


Alexander Payne


Bob Nelson
3,886 ( 1,884)
Nominated for 6 Oscars. Another 29 wins & 159 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Bruce Dern ... Woody Grant
Will Forte ... David Grant
June Squibb ... Kate Grant
Bob Odenkirk ... Ross Grant
Stacy Keach ... Ed Pegram
Mary Louise Wilson ... Aunt Martha
Rance Howard ... Uncle Ray
Tim Driscoll ... Bart
Devin Ratray ... Cole
Angela McEwan ... Peg Nagy
Glendora Stitt Glendora Stitt ... Aunt Betty
Elizabeth Moore Elizabeth Moore ... Aunt Flo
Kevin Kunkel ... Cousin Randy
Dennis McCoig Dennis McCoig ... Uncle Verne
Ronald Vosta Ronald Vosta ... Uncle Albert


"NEBRASKA" is a father and son road trip, from Billings, Montana to Lincoln, Nebraska that gets waylaid at a small town in central Nebraska, where the father grew up and has scores to settle. Told with deadpan humor and a unique visual style, it's ultimately the story of a son trying to get through to a father he doesn't understand. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Life's not about winning or losing. It's about how you get there in the end.

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »





English | Spanish

Release Date:

24 January 2014 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Небраска See more »

Filming Locations:

Plainview, Nebraska, USA See more »


Box Office


$12,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$140,401, 15 November 2013, Limited Release

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Datasat (LCR Sound)| Dolby Digital (LCR Sound)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The movie begins and ends with the 1950s and 1960s Paramount logo, saying "A Paramount Release". See more »


The TV remote on Woody's coffee table is unique to Time Warner Cable. Billings, Montana is served by Charter. See more »


David Grant: How did you and mom end up getting married?
Woody Grant: She wanted to.
David Grant: And you didn't?
Woody Grant: I figured, what the hell.
David Grant: Were you ever sorry you married her?
Woody Grant: All the time.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The film opens with the 1960s Paramount widescreen logo. See more »

Alternate Versions

Alexander Payne claimed a color version was created in an effort to appease Paramount Vantage studio executives over releasing a black and white film. Although he had no plans or intentions of ever releasing it to the public, it was shown on premium movie channel Epix as a "World Color Premiere" at 10:00 pm on August 10, 2014, immediately following the 8:00 pm premiere of the black and white version. See more »


References Hillbilly Handfishin' (2010) See more »


Time After Time
Written by Rob Hyman (as Robert Hyman) and Cyndi Lauper
Performed by Sherry Ristow
Courtesy of Stingray Music
See more »

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User Reviews

On the road again.
19 December 2013 | by Sergeant_TibbsSee all my reviews

It's been nine long years since Alexander Payne's top twenty worthy masterpiece Sideways and I can't shake off the feeling he has another one in him. He's an odd director with his contradictions, safe yet often unsafe, mature yet often silly, exciting yet mellow. I hoped The Descendants would be that film but my expectations were set far too high. While it's grown on me a little since I saw in the theater as I've accepted it's more of an observant drama than a sharp comedy, it's a relatively weak followup to Sideways. Unfortunately I've found that his older films are not good at all, Election disappointed me a lot and I thought About Schmidt was utterly pointless and charmless. I guess that's the main issue with his films, they feel too on- the-surface while it's surface is too low-key to be enough. Sideways manages to connect, but the others feel like their stories are in a bubble, isolated from us.

However, Nebraska has more than enough depth to go around. It may be low-key with its conflict and narrative drive, but its study on the American dream is fascinating. What draws middle-America to riches for nothing? It's become a part of our human condition to strive for that dream. I love films like these where its catalyst is farcical but its approach is mature and thoughtful. It makes you think about time, relationships and generations as our protagonist, played by Will Forte, investigates his father's past, taking that typical amateur detective mold of Payne's films. It's strange that I've recently been in the presence of my namesake's grave as Forte does too. The film regularly conjures deeply personal and specific feelings like that, but not without a great sense of humour, often coming from a silly place. However, it's just chuckles and sighs as the screenplay pulls its punches and holds back for a slighter effect. In a way it's admirable, feeling more honest, in another it's one step short of deep satisfaction. But it's certainly quite satisfying at the very least.

In Payne's films, they're usually about family but only follow part of the family. Nebraska is unusual as eventually the whole unit is together on Woody Grant's journey. The fantastic cast makes this chemistry work and there's an endearing nostalgic quality to see them together on screen. While Forte's character is a bit too passive for him to really shine, despite this being off-type for him, Bruce Dern definitely deserves his acclaim. His bitterness may come out with a snarling bite but he's utterly human and fragile. June Squibb is a welcome presence as she pumps energy into the film's second half, however it's the incredible cinematography steals the show, even beating this year's Gravity for me. The blocking is precise but organic and the shots of the clouds of Nebraska make my stomach sink with their profound beauty. Nebraska may be more intellectually stimulating than emotionally, but perhaps it'll get better on rewatch. Alexander Payne seems like fine wine anyway as his films get better and better.


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