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Elsa & Fred (2014)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 7 November 2014 (USA)
2:16 | Trailer

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"Elsa and Fred" is the story of two people who at the end of the road, discover that it's never too late to love and make dreams come true. Elsa has lived for the past 60 years dreaming of ... See full summary »


Michael Radford


Marcos Carnevale (original screenplay), Marcela Guerty (original screenplay) | 3 more credits »
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Shirley MacLaine ... Elsa
Christopher Plummer ... Fred
Marcia Gay Harden ... Lydia
Wendell Pierce ... Armande
Jared Gilman ... Michael
Erika Alexander ... Laverne
Chris Noth ... Jack
Scott Bakula ... Raymond
George Segal ... John
Reg Rogers ... Alec
James Brolin ... Max
Sam Medina ... Taxi Cab Driver
Jackie Tuttle Jackie Tuttle ... Receptionist
Michael Hartson ... Dance School Director
Deanna Meske ... Laura


"Elsa and Fred" is the story of two people who at the end of the road, discover that it's never too late to love and make dreams come true. Elsa has lived for the past 60 years dreaming of a moment that Fellini had already envisaged: the scene in 'La Dolce Vita' at the Fontana di Trevi. The same scene without Anita Ekberg in it, but with Elsa instead. Without Marcello Mastroianni but with that love that took so long to arrive. Fred has always been a good man who did everything he was supposed to do. After losing his wife, he feels disturbed and confused and his daughter decides that it would be best if he moves into a smaller apartment where he ends meeting Elsa. From that moment on, everything changes. Elsa bursts into his life like a whirlwind, determined to teach him that the time he has left to live -- be it more or less -- is precious and that he should enjoy it as he pleases. Fred surrenders to Elsa's frenzy, to her youth, to her boldness, to her beautiful madness. And this is ... Written by Unknown

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


It's never too late.


Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »



USA | Canada | Mexico | Puerto Rico



Release Date:

7 November 2014 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Elsa and Fred See more »

Filming Locations:

New Orleans, Louisiana, USA See more »


Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$744,504, 14 December 2016
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Elsa (Shirley MacLaine) is obsessed with the Federico Fellini's "La Dolce Vita" and its stars Marcello Mastroianni and Anita Ekberg. In reality, Shirley MacLaine co-starred with Mastroianni in "Used People" in 1992 and with Ekberg in "Artists and Models" in 1955 and in "Woman Times Seven" in 1967. MacLaine also starred in "Sweet Charity" in 1969, a musical version of Fellini's "Nights of Cabiria" made in 1957. See more »


Elsa Hayes: Life is long, and when you've lived so many years, and you do things, and you don't think when you're doing them, that they matter all that much. And then one day you wake up and you realize that you managed quite a bit, and so much so that you can't even remember all of it.
See more »


Remake of Elsa & Fred (2005) See more »


Music To Love By
Written by Leroy Williams (BMI)
Performed by Louisiana Blue Jays
Courtesy of Cutting Edge Music (Holdings) Limited
See more »

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User Reviews

Pretty Lifeless
3 March 2015 | by Bob-45See all my reviews

I really like Shirley MacLaine and Christopher Plummer. So, I was pretty surprised to find them starring in "Elsa & Fred". After all, Netflix Streaming lists the two stars as (Gasp!) Marcia Gay Harden and James Brolin. Hello Netflix! James Brolin appears in only TWO scenes. I guess whoever listed "Elsa and Fred" are either Gen X or Gen Y. Otherwise, he or she would realized BOTH Shirley MacLaine AND Christopher Plummer have won Oscars! Well, yes, so has Marcia Gay Harden; but JAMES BROLIN? Anyway, the ignorance of those responsible for Netflix Streaming is the LEAST of the problems with "Elsa & Fred". I do not care if Michael Radford DID win an audience award. Radford's direction is listless; and nearly the entire first half of "Elsa & Fred" plays out almost as a series of unconnected scenes. Despite the great efforts of MacLaine and Plummer, there is simply NO chemistry between them during the first half. However, once Plummer's character "comes out of his shell," the chemistry between him and Shirley MacLaine is quite touching. Unfortunately, by then, it is too late. The narrative builds no tension, even with the cliché "character in jeopardy" subplot. More engaging music would certainly have helped.

If you really want to see this type of movie done right, watch "Still Mine," with James Cromwell and Genevieve Bujold. Now, THAT is a "geriatric love story" worth seeing.

Oh, I must point out, when MacClaine dresses as "Anita Ekberg," MacClaine proves she is STILL hot at 80. Sadly, I must ALSO point out that James Brolin, at 74, looks WAY too young to be convincing as MacLaine's estranged husband.

I give "Elsa & Fred" a "4".

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