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20th Century Women (2016)

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The story of a teenage boy, his mother, and two other women who help raise him among the love and freedom of Southern California of 1979.



2,889 ( 449)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 12 wins & 69 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
... Dorothea Fields
... Julie
... Abbie
... William
... Jamie
... Mrs. Hamlin - Julie's Mother
... Gail - Abbie's Mother
... Young Jamie (as Vitaly A. Lebeau)
Olivia Hone ... Julie's Sister
... Charlie
... Matt
... Julian
... Trish
... Cindy
... Teen in Therapy


Love, life, and the struggles of a mother bringing up a son in the the late 70's. The ignorance of a free spirit against the needs of a young man trying to find his true character and beliefs. Living in a bohemian household shared with 3 like minded spirited people to help pay the rent, his mother tries to establish bonds that he cannot deal with. She cannot deal with his inability to talk, and enlists the help of other females in his life to share the burden of his upbringing. Slowly life unravels for them all without understanding how. In spite of their perceived struggles, they all go on to live defined lives without any serious consequences. Written by Peter Cox

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexual material, language, some nudity and brief drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

A24 Films | Official Facebook |  »



Release Date:

20 January 2017 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Twentieth Century Women  »


Box Office


$7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$111,200, 1 January 2017, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$5,663,855, 28 April 2017

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$5,757,620, 21 March 2017
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


| (archive footage)

Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


During rehearsals, the cast was encouraged to bring in music they believed their characters listened to. Then, to encourage familiarity among the cast, there would be a dance party where the only rule was that everyone had to dance and it didn't matter what the song was. See more »


Black Flag's 'Nervous Breakdown' EP was released five months before the scene in which it appears, but the 10" pressing shown did not appear until the '90s. See more »


Dorothea: What is that?
Abbie: It's The Raincoats.
Dorothea: Can't things just be pretty?
Jamie: Pretty music is used to hide how unfair and corrupt society is.
Dorothea: Ah, okay so... they're not very good, and they know that, right?
Abbie: Yeah, it's like they've got this feeling, and they don't have any skill, and they don't want skill, because it's really interesting what happens when your passion is bigger than the tools you have to deal with it. It creates this energy that's raw. Isn't it great?
See more »


Featured in 20th Century Cast (2017) See more »


I've Had It
Performed by Black Flag
Written by Greg Ginn
See more »

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User Reviews

Surprisingly tedious and talky movie
22 January 2017 | by See all my reviews

Big disappointment. There is zero dramatic tension in this leisurely-paced coming of age, homage-to-Mom film. A period piece set up the coast from LA near Santa Barbara in the late 1970's, it is the tale of a 15-year old boy and his single Mom who is worried he needs help becoming a man. So she fills the household with helpers. The characters talk and talk and talk and Bening smokes and smokes and smokes and by the end of the film you wonder why anyone backed this rather self-obsessed little indulgence. Bening is the center of attention, and she tries hard, but she wears as much as she delights as Mom. The other characters seem like stage props with lines. I found it hard to get with most of them. Several people walked out of the screening I attended. I was tempted.

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