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You Were Never Really Here (2017)

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A traumatized veteran, unafraid of violence, tracks down missing girls for a living. When a job spins out of control, Joe's nightmares overtake him as a conspiracy is uncovered leading to what may be his death trip or his awakening.

Director:

Lynne Ramsay

Writers:

Lynne Ramsay (screenplay by), Jonathan Ames (based on the book by)
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390 ( 200)
7 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Joaquin Phoenix ... Joe
Dante Pereira-Olson ... Young Joe
Larry Canady Larry Canady ... Cincinatti Cab Driver
Vinicius Damasceno ... Moises
Neo Randall Neo Randall ... Moises's Friend
Judith Roberts ... Joe's Mother
Frank Pando ... Angel
John Doman ... John McCleary
Edward Latham Edward Latham ... Drug Dealer
Alex Manette ... Senator Albert Votto
Claire Hsu ... Staring Girl
Denis Ozer Denis Ozer ... Afghan Boy
Tia Sofia Begh Tia Sofia Begh ... Afghan Girl
Lucy Lan Luo Lucy Lan Luo ... Dead Girl
Annie Mac-Yang Annie Mac-Yang ... Dead Girl
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Storyline

Balancing between feverish dreamlike hallucinations of a tormented past and a grim disoriented reality, the grizzled Joe--a traumatised Gulf War veteran and now an unflinching hired gun who lives with his frail elderly mother--has just finished yet another successful job. With an infernal reputation of being a brutal man of results, the specialised in recovering missing teens enforcer will embark on a blood-drenched rescue mission, when Nina, the innocent 13-year-old daughter of an ambitious New York senator, never returns home. But amidst half-baked leads and a desperate desire to shake off his shoulders the heavy burden of a personal hell, Joe's frenzied plummet into the depths of Tartarus is inevitable, and every step Joe takes to flee the pain, brings him closer to the horrors of insanity. In the end, what is real, and what is a dream? Can there be a new chapter in Joe's life when he keeps running around in circles? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

R for strong violence, disturbing and grisly images, language, and brief nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site | Official site [Japan] | See more »

Country:

UK | France | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 April 2018 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Beautiful Day See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$132,829, 8 April 2018, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$2,523,610, 10 June 2018
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color | Black and White (surveillance footage)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Very little actual violence is shown in the movie, but more often the aftermath of violent scenes. Lynne Ramsay stated that before this movie she had never done anything with a gun, so she had to figure out how to approach violence. Budget constraints didn't allow her to shoot complex action scenes, so this gave birth to the idea to show "post rage aftermath scenes" instead of the violence itself. Lynne Ramsay confessed she thought it was very risky to use this approach, because if it didn't work she wasn't able to go back and reshoot the scenes. See more »

Goofs

Joe leaves fingerprints at the mansion. As ex-military, his prints would likely be registered. See more »

Quotes

Joe: [to himself] Stand up straight... Stand up straight! Only little girls and fuckin' pussies slouch...
See more »

Connections

References Psycho (1960) See more »

Soundtracks

If I Knew You Were Comin' (I'd Have Baked a Cake)
Words and Music by Al Hoffman, Bob Merrill and Al Trace (as Clem Watts)
Performed by Eileen Barton and The New Yorkers
Published by Chester Music Ltd trading as Campbell Connelly & Co/Colgems-EMI Music Inc. John Massa
Courtesy of Island Def Jam Music Group
Under licence from Universal Music Operations Ltd
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Would-Be Noir Thriller Never Gets Off the Ground
7 April 2018 | by leftbanker-1See all my reviews

You could read the novella (much better than the movie) in less time it takes to watch this clunky, utterly pretentious film.

Tick, tick, tick. I kept waiting for something to happen as the beginning of the film rolled past me like a horrifyingly boring catechism class. There is literally about six minutes of action in the entire film, the rest is tedious nonsense. Would it have killed the director to throw us a bone somewhere before the movie is one third of the way over? Flashbacks to nowhere, taking care of the old and feeble-minded, and lots of slowness, very slow. Someone needs to learn about pacing.

When we finally get to the heart of the matter--and it takes forever and doesn't last long--the camera is third rate and the action is fuzzy because the director is trying to make some sort of art film from ultra-violence which is a little like playing classical music with a kazoo.

Just because an actor is fat, hairy, and mumbles doesn't mean he's putting in a stellar performance: just because the viewer has no freaking idea of what is going on doesn't mean the director is doing something admirable. It's not that we're too stupid to understand what you're trying to say; it's that we don't care. Once again, a director seems to have forgotten that films are supposed to be entertainment. Should appeal to folks who think that if a film makes no sense it must be deep.


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