Little Buddha

Little Buddha

4.3 3
Director: Bernardo Bertolucci

Cast: Bernardo Bertolucci, Keanu Reeves, Chris Isaak, Bridget Fonda

     
 

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Bernardo Bertolucci attempts to mix Buddhist spirituality with childhood fantasy in Little Buddha. When Dean Conrad (Chris Isaak), a Seattle architect, comes home from work one day, he finds two robed Buddhist monks sitting in his living room talking with his wife Lisa (Bridget Fonda). Guided by a series of disturbing dreams, the monks have traveled from Nepal

Overview

Bernardo Bertolucci attempts to mix Buddhist spirituality with childhood fantasy in Little Buddha. When Dean Conrad (Chris Isaak), a Seattle architect, comes home from work one day, he finds two robed Buddhist monks sitting in his living room talking with his wife Lisa (Bridget Fonda). Guided by a series of disturbing dreams, the monks have traveled from Nepal to Seattle because they believe that the Conrad's ten-year-old son, Jesse (Alex Wiesendanger) may be the reincarnation of a legendary Buddhist mystic. The Conrads are initially skeptical, particularly when the monks want to take their son back to Bhutan with them. But after Dean's partner commits suicide, Dean has a religious awakening ("I've been doin' some thinkin'," he says) and permits Jesse to go away with the monks. Then the Lama Norbu (Ruocheng Ying) gives Jesse a children's book about the Buddha Siddhartha (Keanu Reeves). Siddhartha leads a sheltered life until he comes upon a couple of all-knowing beggars who introduce him to poverty and hunger. After this revelation, Siddhartha decides that it is his destiny to relieve all human beings from pain and suffering. Back in present day, Jesse is now knowledgeable about the basis of Buddhism. Much to Jesse's and his father's surprise, however, they find that there are two other children at Bhutan who show signs of being the reincarnated Buddhist mystic.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Matthew Tobey
After finding success with his "the boy who would be king" epic, The Last Emperor, Bernardo Bertolucci may have been trying to take things a step further with this "the boy who would be Buddha" story. Despite the negative words of many critics, the film is actually a rather compelling film that mixes a contemporary soul-searching tale with the traditional story of Siddhartha. Truthfully, most weren't sure what to make of Little Buddha at first glance. After all, the casting of musician and sometime actor Chris Isaak in his first lead role and, in an especially bold move, uber-white-boy Keanu Reeves as the first Buddha would give pause to anyone. But, contrary to what many think, it works for the most part. The relationships between Isaak, his wife (Bridget Fonda), and their son (Alex Wiesendanger) are incredibly human and believable -- quite a task considering their extraordinary situation -- and the flashbacks to Reeves in ancient India add an appropriate and often whimsical balance to the film. While it's definitely not for everyone and will never sit among Bertolucci's masterpieces, Little Buddha is an interesting film worthy of an open-minded look.

Product Details

Release Date:
06/28/2011
UPC:
0096009771393
Original Release:
1994
Rating:
PG
Source:
Miramax Echo Bridge
Time:
2:00:00

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Keanu Reeves Prince Siddhartha
Chris Isaak Dean Conrad
Bridget Fonda Lisa Conrad
Alex Wiesendanger Jesse Konrad
Ying Ruocheng Lama Norbu
Jigme Kunsang Actor
Jo Champa Maria
Howard Feuer Actor
Priscilla John Actor
Joanna Merlin Actor
Ryuichi Sakamoto Conductor

Technical Credits
Bernardo Bertolucci Director,Original Story,Screenwriter
James Acheson Costumes/Costume Designer,Production Designer
John Bernard Production Designer
Peter Frampton Makeup
Nicola Pecorini Camera Operator
Mark Peploe Screenwriter
Ryuichi Sakamoto Score Composer
Pietro Scalia Editor
Ivan Sharrock Sound/Sound Designer
Vittorio Storaro Cinematographer
Jeremy Thomas Producer
Rudolph Wurlitzer Screenwriter

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Little Buddha
1. Exciting News [5:22]
2. Seattle [11:11]
3. Teaching Jesse [6:30]
4. Baby Siddartha [6:24]
5. Haunting Beauty [5:54]
6. The Outside World [12:00]
7. Harsh Raality [7:42]
8. Looking for Freedom [10:11]
9. The Middle Way [6:03]
10. Raju [6:42]
11. Gita [5:06]
12. Mara's Trials [10:52]
13. Monastery Life [8:23]
14. Lama Norbu [10:08]
15. Impermanence [10:22]

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Little Buddha 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you have any curiousity about how Siddhartha became the Buddha then this is a good movie to watch. Keanu does a very good job of portraying the man that became known as Buddha. Very entertaining and should cause you to think and feel.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a wonderful Hollywood version of Buddha. Wonderful for children. Makes you ponder!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago