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3.8 43
Director: Mike Nichols

Cast: Julia Roberts, Jude Law, Natalie Portman


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Patrick Marber's acclaimed stage drama about the romantic interactions of four people has been given a reverent screen adaptation by director and producer Mike Nichols. Dan (Jude Law) is a writer in London who wants to finish a novel, but in the meantime supports himself by writing obituaries. One day he chances upon Alice (Natalie Portman), a beautiful young American


Patrick Marber's acclaimed stage drama about the romantic interactions of four people has been given a reverent screen adaptation by director and producer Mike Nichols. Dan (Jude Law) is a writer in London who wants to finish a novel, but in the meantime supports himself by writing obituaries. One day he chances upon Alice (Natalie Portman), a beautiful young American expatriate, working as a stripper, when he sees her get hit by a car. Alice immediately falls for Dan, and gives him her love without reservation. Dan is initially enchanted with Alice, and returns her affection, but while she inspires him to write his novel (based on her life), her neediness begins to wear on him. Anna (Julia Roberts) is a photographer who is hired to take a portrait of Dan for the dust jacket of his book; Dan is attracted to her easy confidence, and while the two of them flirt, Anna soon (inadvertently through Dan's playful machinations) meets Larry (Clive Owen), a dermatologist, and marries him. Dan can't get Anna out of his mind even though she's married, and the two become lovers, but Dan is frustrated by the fact that Anna is reluctant to leave Larry for him. Patrick Marber wrote the screenplay for this adaptation of Closer; it was the playwright's first feature-film credit.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
Those who enjoy movies that reflect real life and don’t pander to their audiences with contrived happy endings will welcome this Mike Nichols-directed adaptation of Patrick Marber’s biting play. Nobody can accuse Nichols of turning out conventional Hollywood pap -- not this time, anyway. The plot revolves around the passions, repressions, and infidelities of four people in London. Newspaper obituary writer and aspiring novelist Dan (Jude Law) falls in love with Alice (Natalie Portman), an enigmatic American girl with a checkered past. While involved with her he becomes smitten with prominent photographer Anna (Julia Roberts), who brushes him off in favor of lusty dermatologist Larry (Clive Owen), an Internet chat buddy of Dan’s. When the dynamics of their respective relationships change, novelist and photographer find themselves together again, little realizing how drastically their affair will affect the lives of all four people. Marber’s screenplay teems with terse, brittle dialogue that is brilliantly delivered by a superb cast. Each of the principal players brings something special to his or her characterization, and the added dimension makes them all the more compelling, though maybe not sympathetic. None of them are blameless in the debacle resulting from their various dalliances -- Nichols and Marber aren’t interested in giving us morally pure protagonists. Real-life romances are often messy, and the resolution of the conflict presented in this movie is believable precisely because the actors and filmmakers work hard to make the situation authentic. Closer is definitely a must-see film, even if, to use an old phrase, it’s a little cold around the heart.
All Movie Guide - Perry Seibert
Mike Nichols has always possessed a superior ear for dialogue and, more importantly, the rhythm of dialogue. This is what makes him arguably the finest film director of stage works (Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Wit, Angels in America). Closer is yet another accomplished film to add to that list. Patrick Marber's play has been opened up visually, but the story remains about the intense relationships between four people who sleep with each other, lie to each other, and -- quite often -- lie to themselves. Clive Owen finds every dimension in his alpha-male character. During one of the many arguments in this film he shouts, "I am a caveman!" Never for a second does the audience question that sliver of self-revelation. Jude Law manages a performance so full of charm and self-loathing that he undercuts his work in Alfie from the same year. However, it is the women that surprise. Julia Roberts became a star after Pretty Woman, and although she tried to shake that image with a series of brave artistic choices in the mid-'90s, she eventually accepted her status wholeheartedly and appeared in a string of pieces shaped to her persona (My Best Friend's Wedding, Notting Hill, and winning the Oscar for Erin Brockovich). As Anna in Closer, Roberts shows not an ounce of movie-star self-consciousness. She is in character at all times, unconcerned with her image. The character is weak and selfish, and Roberts plays it unflinchingly without ever asking the audience for sympathy. It is hard to believe she had a performance like this in her. Last but not least, Natalie Portman announces with this film that she is an adult -- and an actress of the highest caliber. She can play girlish -- smiling and giggling with what appears to be genuine puppy love -- although she is no longer a girl. This character understands how her physicality (something much more than just her sexuality) affects the people around her, and Portman acts with every ounce of herself. The character may well be unknowable to the other characters and to the audience -- but Portman understands her inside and out. With his superior timing, Nichols allows each of these actors to hit every funny, cruel, and intimate moment in the script. Closer is a well-written, well-directed, and well-acted exercise in making cruel people compulsively watchable.

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Image Entertainment
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
[Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Sales rank:

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Julia Roberts Anna
Jude Law Dan
Natalie Portman Alice
Clive Owen Larry
Nick Hobbs Taxi Driver
Colin Stinton Customs Officer

Technical Credits
Mike Nichols Director,Producer
Mary Bailey Associate Producer
John Bloom Editor
Cary Brokaw Producer
John Calley Producer
Celia Costas Executive Producer
Robert Fox Executive Producer
Stephen Goldblatt Cinematographer
Michael Haley Asst. Director,Co-producer
Tim Hatley Production Designer
Paul A. Levin Associate Producer
Patrick Marber Screenwriter
Hannah Moseley Art Director
Ann Roth Costumes/Costume Designer
Scott Rudin Executive Producer
Ivan Sharrock Sound/Sound Designer
Antonia Van Drimmelen Editor

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Start [:23]
2. Alice [2:32]
3. Borrowing Lives [1:32]
4. Catching Up [4:18]
5. "I've Got to See You." [5:09]
6. "Just Take My Picture." [4:20]
7. London Sex Anon [2:13]
8. Dr. Larry [1:58]
9. Invitation [3:05]
10. Sad Strangers [6:30]
11. Lurking [6:30]
12. "This Will Hurt." [2:01]
13. The Moment [5:08]
14. "I'm the One That Leaves." [1:27]
15. Closed Circle [5:09]
16. Caveman [4:49]
17. Paradise Suite [4:12]
18. "My Real Name Is Jane." [2:28]
19. Double Divorcee [2:17]
20. "Sign." [4:36]
21. Better to Be Truthful [2:01]
22. A Fist Wrapped in Blood [3:45]
23. Prescription [5:24]
24. Happy Anniversary [3:16]
25. "She's Mine." [4:12]
26. Honesty [2:36]
27. Jane Jones [3:06]


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Closer 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 43 reviews.
An_Average_Guy More than 1 year ago
The way the storyline was written seems all wrong for the big screen, and the movie-style format really does nothing to help. The 4 players in the film could have wonderful lives if they'd just wake up a bit. Closer just examines their interminglings.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is one of my favorite movies of all time! I would definately recommend it!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I'm a huge fan of Julia Roberts and she was superb as always in this film. But even Julia’s skills couldn’t save this movie because it had no point, and was filled with selfish characters that couldn’t remain faithful to save their lives. I’m not sure what she was thinking when she agreed to take this role, but it is definitely not the highlight of her career.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Closer makes every step in the right direction as far as films go. Superb acting, and in my opinion, the breakthrough performance of the year for Clive Owen. The plot is entertaining through the end while provoking intense emotional and conceptual feelings that last long after you leave the screen. All Academy Award nominations that this film recieved were well deserved, but I can not understand why it recieved no nomination for best adapted screenplay, of which is more than deserved. One of the best films of the year.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I went to the movies three times to see this and i'm so excited that it is out on DVD!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The film as a whole is vile. It is offensive. It is emotionally disturbing and it portrays not a single forthright individual. Much of the story's unfolding leans far too heavily on the crutch of outlandish coincidence and the language is laced heavily with profanity. That being said . . . it was a very good film. There is a short period at the beginning where the viewer is calmly reassured. It will all be okay. Damien Rice's voice is heart-breakingly sweet as he croons over the meeting of Daniel (Law) and Alice (Portman). It's a scene straight out of one of those numerous chick flicks we all cherish; those cozy romantic comedies that fit our fantasies as warmly and as snugly as cashmere on a crisp morning. We smile at the flirtation . . . the initial hesitation and the knowledge that something extraordinary is blossoming in these two people. We all know what is coming; we've read the reviews . . . pain and parting and betrayal . . . but this is a movie, we rationalize, and in movies, we're safe . . . no matter what happens. We watch these two fall in love and then we witness the first betrayal. Small, it would seem, in the face of what's to come. Still, we hold out. There is even laughter (partly in sharing in the joke and partly in shock) at Daniel's internet prank (anyone who has read any reviews knows what I'm referring to). But there comes the point where the laughter stops. You can hear a pin drop. No one coughs or shifts in their seats and not even the barely out of high-school set, so infamous for ruining a film with editorializing or just general obnoxiousness, breathes a word. This is where the pain and parting, which we knew all along was coming, smacks us full force in the face. There is so much cruelty and obscenity slung about (the latter mostly coming from Clive Owen's character, Larry) that we feel almost brutalized, ourselves. Of course . . . in the real world, people don't speak this way. The vulgarity of the language is included simply for the shock value, but this is not what skewers us. Rather, it is what we willingly and with full knowledge inflict upon each other. The immensity of it. The emotional devastation, while fictional in it's drunken sailor dialect, is nonetheless true in the lasting and far-reaching effects. In fact, Larry's most brutal verbal assault upon Daniel near the end of the film is delivered in calm controlled tones and in language free of any obscenity. It is a killer blow and, in spite of the horribleness of what has come before, it is the first time my jaw drops in utter disbelief at what has just been said. It is, given what we are told of Daniel's history in the opening scene, the coldest and most wretched thing one could have said. After the credits rolled and Damien Rice's song again filled the theater, I waited . . . partly because the song is so beautiful and so fitting (especially the last line, which was curiously cut off) but mainly because I had to get a grip on myself and come to terms with what I'd just seen. My initial reaction was disgust . . . as no doubt many others felt. But in viewing 'Closer' as a film, and as thus, a piece of art, I was reminded that essentially, great filmmakers show us (nowadays, at least) one of two things . . . a beautiful lie or an ugly truth. This may have been the ugliest of all, but truth it is, in the end. The performances, by the way, are brilliant. Every last one of them. For now, though, I think I need a hug.
Guest More than 1 year ago
i love this movie it soooo awsome. A must see!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
"Closer" is one of the all-time WORST movies I have ever seen. I do find it ironic that a movie that is all about sex- where all characters do is talk frankly about sex- is miserably BORING. The 4 main characters are so shallow and selfish, they don't even seem human. If these characters had ANY human traits, we might connect with them, care about them, understand them, or (at least) be interested in them, if only to a small degree. I am not a Julia Roberts fan, but she has the one and only interesting scene in "Closer", where her character viciously tells her husband (Clive Owen) about how much better a lover Jude Law's character is compared to him. I thought Natalie Portman gave a poor performance (as usual) and I cannot believe how many award nominations she received for "Closer" -just because Portman cries in every other scene she is in, does not make her a good actress. After watching "Closer", the only thing you will feel is deep regret for wasting and losing 2 hours of your life on such a boring movie.
Guest More than 1 year ago
While I am an avid movie watcher, I am also an avid theatre goer, and while the movie is no where near as outstanding as the play, I still feel that it is very important to see. In these modern times where the divorce rate is pratically one in three and the rate of people having sex before marriage is about the same, this movie hits you in a place that will, most certianly, make you slightly uncomfortable. But uncomfortable doesn't mean bad. Despite what many will say, it talks about what many people deal with in relationships every day. Sexual jealously is something that this movie really brings out of people and it is very important to see these un-pretty traits in ourselves through the film. Clive Owen does a spectacular performance as Dan, while Natalie Portman, Alice, keeps us completely captivated with her. All and all, it is most certianly worth buying.
Guest More than 1 year ago
With the growing trend in adultery in society today, it is only natural for it to enter into our movie industry as well. However, Closer is one of the few movies to accurately depict the pain, torment, and destruction that cheating brings to a person. This is not a movie for younger audiences, but it is a movie that just about everyone will relate to in one way or another. Natalie Portman's character is absolutely entrancing throughout the whole film, and you can't help but feel pity and disgust for every character. Overall this is a great movie, one that I highly recommend watching/buying!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was upset at the end of the movie the first time I saw it, generally enjoying the "happy endings". But after seeing it a second time I came to appreciate the realistic nature of it. The actors are great (and Jude Law is very sexy, as is Natalie Portman) and the story line is good.
Guest More than 1 year ago
great acting from all the characters. superb dialogue. realisic portrayal of life and relationships and how they are not always as straightforward and simple as some would think.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It is so refreshing to finally see a film that tells about the dynamics of love and infidelity and the trappings that come with it all. A must see!
Book_freakk More than 1 year ago
Natalie Portman did the best, then Clive Owen. Julia and Jude did good but I think their characters ruined it for them. Overall though, this movie was brilliant. The ending was totally ironic. Loved it! & the opening & ending song by Damien Rice is so beautiful. You have to watch this movie.
Guest More than 1 year ago
closer was a great piece of work and i recommend anyone with any sense should go see it, unless you completely ignore the undercurrent of basic, raw human emotion. anyone who doesnt fall in love with it the first time they see it is a complete idiot and should not be allowed to witness any great movies of our time, of which closer is one. some people say that it goes to extremes with the language and sexuality, but so do people, and this movie is all about people.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Its rare that a film as mature and honest as this gets made, all the actors do a spectacular job its a wonder they werent all nominated for Oscars--this film is a must for fans of Julia Roberts, Jude Law and Natalie Portman.
nazareth62 More than 1 year ago
I purchased this film on a whim and it's 1 of my favorites after 1 viewing! Realistic and incredibly sexy it's a film I can watch again and again! Buy this 1-you won't regret it!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I kept waiting for something redeeming to happen in this film to no avail. It was depressing throughout and left me with an empty feeling. I will say the actors were believable in their roles -- all selfish, obsessive, insensitive individuals. In the end I didn't care about a single one of them. Ugh, that's an hour and 44 minutes of my life I'll never get back.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It was AWFUL! I'm sorry I wasted my money and that the stars of this fiasco wasted their time.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am a man of action flicks, dumb comedies, and meaningful love stories. On the contary, this was not meaningful. Try worthless drizzle over a DVD. It was so dirty and stupid. The movie had more possibility that most in the genre but it failed miserably.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the lamest movie I've ever seen Jude Law, Julia Roberts, or Natalie Portman in. I couldn't even get 30 minutes into it without yanking it out of my DVD player. Pointless trash.
Guest More than 1 year ago
With trailers on television I expected this to be a romantic comedy. What a mistake on my part - next time I see an "R" rating, I will not pursue. This movie, although real life, touches the capsule of pain we all carry for loves that have gone wrong. I am not a fan of reliving that pain and although this movie, screenplay, etc. may be brilliant, it hurts too much to watch.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love movies with Julia Roberts and Natalie Portman so I enjoyed them acting together. I also enjoyed the music video.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Not being a fan of romantic comedies, I was happily surprised when this movie was not. It is a very real, sometimes very painful, unabridged look at the lives of 4 people and the truths and lies that drive them apart (or even bring them back together). It is definitely not J-Lo or Kate Hudson escapist fluff, and the actors all contributed excellent performances, particularly Julia Roberts. Try not to watch this one with the kids.