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Being John Malkovich (1999)

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A puppeteer discovers a portal that leads literally into the head of the movie star, John Malkovich.

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1,836 ( 38)
Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 48 wins & 75 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Derek Mantini
...
Father at Puppet Show
Madison Lanc ...
Daughter at Puppet Show
...
Woman in Elevator (as Octavia L. Spencer)
...
...
...
K.K. Dodds ...
Wendy
Byrne Piven ...
Captain Mertin
Judith Wetzell ...
Tiny Woman
...
...
Cab Driver
...
Guy in Restaurant
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Storyline

Puppeteer Craig Schwartz and animal lover and pet store clerk Lotte Schwartz are just going through the motions of their marriage. Despite not being able to earn a living solely through puppeteering, Craig loves his profession as it allows him to inhabit the skin of others. He begins to take the ability to inhabit the skin of others to the next level when he is forced to take a job as a file clerk for the off-kilter LesterCorp, located on the five-foot tall 7½ floor of a Manhattan office building. Behind one of the filing cabinets in his work area, Craig finds a hidden door which he learns is a portal into the mind of John Malkovich, the visit through the portal which lasts fifteen minutes after which the person is spit into a ditch next to the New Jersey Turnpike. Craig is fascinated by the meaning of life associated with this finding. Lotte's trips through the portal make her evaluate her own self. And the confident Maxine Lund, one of Craig's co-workers who he tells about the ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Ever Wanted To Be Someone Else? See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Fantasy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 December 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Biti John Malkovich  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$13,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$637,721 (USA) (29 October 1999)

Gross:

$22,858,926 (USA) (5 May 2000)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At some point in the film, John Malkovich is described as being from Evanston, Illinois. He's not, but at that moment, John Cusack's character is inside his mind, and Cusack IS from Evanston Illinois. See more »

Goofs

WALK/DON'T WALK signs in New York City at the time of the film used words. The camera zooms in on a sign where there is a upheld hand for stop and a walking figure for go. These pictograph signs were typical at the time in California, not NYC, where the movie is set. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Lotte Schwartz: Craig, honey, it's time for bed.
[fade out and in]
Orrin Hatch the bird: Craig, honey, time to get up, Craig, honey, time to get up, Craig, honey, time to get up, Craig, honey, time to get up,
Craig Schwartz: Lotte...
Lotte Schwartz: I'm sorry. I didn't know Orrin Hatch was out of his cage.
See more »

Crazy Credits

at the end of the cast listing is noted ...and John Malkovich See more »

Connections

Referenced in Death to Smoochy (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Tchaikovsky: Swan Lake
Music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (as Tchaikovsky)
Performed by Boston Symphony Orchestra
Conducted by Seiji Ozawa
Courtesy of Deutsche Grammophone Gesellschaft GmbH, Hamburg
Under license from Universal Music Special Markets
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
It's my head!!!!
1 December 1999 | by (Brooklyn, NY) – See all my reviews

Though I had liked the few Spike Jonze music videos I've seen(Weezer's "Buddy Holly" and the Beastie Boys one), I was hesitant about whether he could make the jump to movies, for, as we know, for every good MTV raised director(David Fincher), there are several bad ones(Michael Bay). And this is truly a concept which could have gone either way. But this is one of the most original, funny, and enjoyable movie experiences I've had this year. Every idea pays off in ways you don't expect, all four main actors do well cast against type, and it's awfully hard to pick who's the best(though I suspect John Malkovich will be remembered at Oscar time), the dialogue is great("Don't stand in the way of my actualization as a man!" may be the best line of the year), and I can't think of another way to describe this except go see it now.


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I am a MSTie, and found this uwatchable. gaijin33
Who's penis is that? matthew-vaughn-141-344338
Why John Malkovich? miles_fierce_larson
I completely do NOT get this movie, care to explain? yuan-van
Highly Overrated chironaphelion
Catherine Keener as Maxine? metanthrax
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