|Thelma & Louise|
|Directed by||Ridley Scott|
|Written by||Callie Khouri|
|Edited by||Thom Noble|
|Music by||Hans Zimmer|
|Box office||$45.4 million|
Thelma & Louise is a 1991 American female buddy road crime film directed by Ridley Scott and written by Callie Khouri. It stars Geena Davis as Thelma and Susan Sarandon as Louise, two friends who embark on a road trip that ends up in unforeseen circumstances. Filming took place from June to August of 1990. The supporting cast include Harvey Keitel, Michael Madsen, and Brad Pitt in one of his first major film roles.
Despite some controversy at the time of its release, accusing the movie of portraying a negative view of men, the film became a critical and commercial success, receiving six Academy Award nominations and winning for Best Original Screenplay. Scott was nominated for Best Director, and both Sarandon and Davis were nominated for Best Actress. To date, this is the most recent film to have two actors nominated in the same category for either Best Actor or Best Actress. It influenced other films and artistic works and became a landmark of feminist film.[ citation needed ] In 2016, the United States Library of Congress selected the film for preservation in the National Film Registry, finding it "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".
Best friends Thelma Dickinson (Geena Davis) and Louise Sawyer (Susan Sarandon) set out for a weekend vacation at a fishing cabin in the mountains to take a break from their dreary lives in Arkansas. Thelma, a ditzy housewife, is married to a disrespectful and controlling carpet salesman, Darryl (Christopher McDonald), while sharp-tongued Louise works as a waitress in a diner and is on–off dating an easygoing musician, Jimmy (Michael Madsen), who spends most of his time on the road.
On the way, they stop for a drink at a roadhouse bar, where Thelma meets and dances with a flirtatious stranger, Harlan (Timothy Carhart). Later in the parking lot, he starts kissing her and taking her clothes off without her consent. Thelma resists, but Harlan becomes violent and then attempts to rape her. Louise finds them and threatens to shoot Harlan. Harlan stops, but, as the women walk away, he yells that he should have raped Thelma, before further insulting Louise. In a fit of rage, Louise shoots Harlan in the chest, killing him instantly. A horrified Thelma ushers Louise to the car and the pair flee the scene.
At a motel, they discuss how to handle the situation. Thelma wants to go to the police, but Louise fears that no one will believe Thelma's claim of attempted rape since Thelma was drinking and dancing with Harlan, and they will be subsequently charged with murder. They decide to go on the run and flee to Mexico, but Louise insists that they travel there without going through Texas. Heading west, the women come across an attractive young drifter, J.D. (Brad Pitt), whom Thelma quickly falls for, and Thelma convinces Louise to let him hitch a ride with them. Louise contacts Jimmy and asks him to wire transfer her life savings to her. Jimmy surprises her by delivering the money in person, and the two spend the night together. Jimmy proposes to Louise, but she refuses. Meanwhile, Thelma invites J.D. to her room, and they sleep together. She learns he is a thief who has broken parole.
The following morning, the two discover that J.D. has stolen Louise's life savings and fled. Louise is distraught, so a guilty Thelma takes charge and later robs a nearby convenience store using tactics she learned from listening to J.D. Meanwhile, the FBI closes in on the fugitives after witnesses at the bar identify Louise's 1966 Ford Thunderbird convertible. Arkansas State Police Investigator Hal Slocumb (Harvey Keitel), leading the investigation, questions both J.D. (who was caught) and Jimmy, and taps into the phone line at Darryl's house. He sympathizes with the pair's situation and understands why they did not report Harlan's murder (partly due to Louise's own experience in Texas). During a couple of brief phone conversations with Louise, Hal expresses his sympathy but is unsuccessful in persuading her to surrender.
Thelma tells Louise she understands if she wants to go back home, knowing she has Jimmy waiting for her, but explains she cannot go back to Darryl. Louise promises they will keep going together. While back on the road, Thelma reflects on what Harlan had done with her and tries to ask Louise if what happened with her was what happened to Louise in Texas. Louise responds angrily and tells Thelma to never bring it up again. Later, they are pulled over by a New Mexico state trooper for speeding. Knowing he will soon discover their true identity, Thelma holds him at gunpoint and locks him in the trunk of his police car. Driving further west, they encounter a foul-mouthed truck driver who repeatedly makes obscene gestures at them. They pull over and demand an apology from him; when he refuses, they fire at his fuel tanker, causing it to explode. The women leave him stranded in the desert with the tanker's wreckage.
Thelma and Louise are finally cornered by the authorities only one hundred yards from the edge of the Grand Canyon. Hal arrives on the scene, but he is refused the last chance to talk the women into surrendering. Rather than be captured and spend the rest of their lives in jail or die by execution, Thelma proposes that they "keep going". Louise asks Thelma if she is certain, and Thelma says yes. They kiss and then hold hands, Louise steps on the gas, and they accelerate over the cliff as Hal desperately pursues them on foot.
Credits adapted from American Film Institute.
The idea for Thelma & Louise originated in the spring of 1988 when Callie Khouri, then a music video producer, was driving home from work to her apartment in Santa Monica. She spent the following six months working on her first screenplay, which was noted to have drawn inspiration from her own experience as well as her friendship with country music singer Pam Tillis.She had intended it to be a low-budget independent film, directed by herself and produced by fellow music video producer Amanda Temple (wife of English filmmaker Julien Temple). After shopping the project around and finding no takers, Temple showed the script to her friend Mimi Polk Gitlin, who ran Ridley Scott's Percy Main Productions (later Scott Free Productions). Gitlin in turn showed the script to Scott, who expressed great enthusiasm for the project. He agreed to produce the film and bought the film rights for $500,000. Pathé Entertainment, then led by Scott's friend and collaborator Alan Ladd Jr., came on board as a co-producer and financier.
Scott considered four people for the role of director, all of whom turned down the opportunity. Per Gitlin's recollection, three of the candidates were Bob Rafelson, Kevin Reynolds and Richard Donner. Scott was reluctant to direct the film himself but eventually took on the role, having been persuaded by Michelle Pfeiffer to do so.
Michelle Pfeiffer and Jodie Foster were originally chosen for the leads; both accepted their roles with enthusiasm. As pre-production of the film dragged on, the two eventually dropped out, with Pfeiffer going on to star in Love Field and Foster in The Silence of the Lambs . Meryl Streep and Goldie Hawn then offered to play the leads, but Streep later dropped out due to scheduling conflicts while Hawn was not considered right for the part. Geena Davis (who had been vigorously pursuing the lead role for nearly a year) and Susan Sarandon were ultimately chosen. The two took extensive driving and shooting lessons in preparation for their roles.
Scott personally convinced Harvey Keitel to take on the role of Hal, the sympathetic Arkansas detective. The two had previously collaborated in Scott's feature directorial debut, the 1977 film The Duellists . Davis recommended her ex-boyfriend Christopher McDonald for the role of Darryl, Thelma's controlling husband. Scott wanted Michael Madsen for Harlan, Thelma's would-be rapist, but Madsen was unwilling; he eventually won the role of Jimmy, Louise's boyfriend. Brad Pitt auditioned for the hustler J.D.; however, the part originally went to Billy Baldwin. Pitt eventually secured the role after both Baldwin and his replacement dropped out.
Principal photography for Thelma & Louise began on June 11, 1990, and concluded on August 31, 1990.Although the setting for the film is a fictional route between Arkansas and the Grand Canyon, it was filmed almost entirely in the states of California and Utah. The primary filming locations were rural areas around Bakersfield, California and Moab, Utah. The Grand Canyon scenes were filmed just south of Dead Horse Point State Park in Utah. Parts of the film were also shot at Shafer Overlook, Monument Valley, La Sal Mountains, La Sal Junction, Cisco, Old Valley City Reservoir, Thompson Springs, Arches National Park, and Crescent Junction in Utah. Shafter, and also Taft, California
Pete Haycock on slide guitar contributed to Thunderbird, the theme music for the film.In addition to Glenn Frey's "Part of Me, Part of You", which became the film's primary theme song, the soundtrack included songs performed by Chris Whitley, Martha Reeves, Toni Childs, Marianne Faithfull, Charlie Sexton, Grayson Hugh, B.B. King, and Michael McDonald.
Thelma & Louise was screened out of competition as the closing film at the 1991 Cannes Film Festival. million within the country.Theatrical release was delayed due to financial turmoil at MGM-Pathé. The film eventually opened in American theaters on May 24, 1991 and was a box-office success, grossing $45
The film received critical acclaim. Janet Maslin of The New York Times had only praise for the film in her review:
Mr. Scott's Thelma and Louise, with a sparkling screenplay by the first-time writer Callie Khouri, is a surprise on this and many other scores. It reveals the previously untapped talent of Mr. Scott (best known for majestically moody action films like Alien, Blade Runner and Black Rain) for exuberant comedy, and for vibrant American imagery, notwithstanding his English roots. It reimagines the buddy film with such freshness and vigor that the genre seems positively new. It discovers unexpected resources in both its stars, Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis, who are perfectly teamed as the spirited and original title characters.
Roger Ebert also praised the film but withheld a perfect score on the basis of "the last shot before the titles begin. It's a freeze frame that fades to white, which is fine, except it does so with unseemly haste .... It's unsettling to get involved in a movie that takes 128 minutes to bring you to a payoff that the filmmakers seem to fear."
After watching the film, singer-songwriter Tori Amos wrote "Me and a Gun", the story of her rape several years earlier.
The final scene, where the two embrace before committing suicide by driving off a cliff, has become iconic.Numerous homages and parodies of the scene have appeared, including alternate film endings, cartoon parodies, video game "Easter eggs", and as a tragic ending to television series, music videos, and commercials.
The film also received harsh criticism from those who thought it was biased against men and that its depictions of men were unfairly negative.
Metacritic lists a composite critical score of 88 out of 100 based on 12 reviews, meaning "universal acclaim."Rotten Tomatoes records a score of 85%, and an average rating of 7.9/10, based on 71 reviews. The site's consensus states: "Simultaneously funny, heartbreaking, and peppered with action, Ridley Scott's Thelma & Louise is a potent, well-acted road movie that transcends the feminist message at its core."
"Thelma & Louise" placed second to The Silence of the Lambs as the best film of 1991 in a poll of 81 critics.
Numerous critics and writers have remarked on the strong feminist overtones of Thelma & Louise. Film critic B. Ruby Rich praises the film as an uncompromising validation of women's experiences,while Kenneth Turan calls it a "neo-feminist road movie". In her essay "The Daughters of Thelma and Louise", Jessica Enevold argues that the film constitutes "an attack on conventional patterns of chauvinist male behavior toward females". In addition, it "exposes the traditional stereotyping of male–female relationships" while rescripting the typical gender roles of the road movie genre.
In her review for the Los Angeles Times , film critic Sheila Benson objects to the characterization of the film as feminist, arguing that it is more preoccupied with revenge and violence than feminist values.
In his review for the New York Post , film critic Kyle Smith describes the film as "a misogynist tale about unbelievably ditzy women who lose what remains of their reason under pressure and suffer the ultimate punishment."Smith's review focused on the terrible decisions these female characters make throughout the entire film.
In an article commemorating the film's 20th anniversary in 2011, Raina Lipsitz called it "the last great film about women" and said that it heralded the achievements of women that caused 1992 to become "the year of the woman".However, she also said that women-themed films have since been losing ground.
The British Film Institute published a book about the film in 2000 72.as part of a Modern Classics series. On the Writers Guild of America Award's list of 101 best screenplays, it made No.
|Academy Awards||Best Director||Ridley Scott||Nominated|
|Best Actress||Geena Davis||Nominated|
|Best Original Screenplay||Callie Khouri||Won|
|Best Cinematography||Adrian Biddle||Nominated|
|Best Editing||Thom Noble||Nominated|
|BAFTA Awards||Best Film||Ridley Scott and Mimi Polk Gitlin||Nominated|
|Best Direction||Ridley Scott||Nominated|
|Best Original Screenplay||Callie Khouri||Nominated|
|Best Actress||Geena Davis||Nominated|
|Best Music||Hans Zimmer||Nominated|
|Best Cinematography||Adrian Biddle||Nominated|
|Best Editing||Thom Noble||Nominated|
|Golden Globe Awards||Best Motion Picture - Drama||Nominated|
|Best Screenplay||Callie Khouri||Won|
|Best Actress in a Motion Picture - Drama||Geena Davis||Nominated|
Sir Ridley Scott is an English film director and producer. He has directed the science fiction horror film Alien (1979), the neo-noir dystopian film Blade Runner (1982), the road adventure film Thelma & Louise (1991), the historical drama film Gladiator (2000), the war film Black Hawk Down (2001), and the science fiction film The Martian (2015).
Catherine Fabienne Dorléac, known professionally as Catherine Deneuve, is a French actress as well as an occasional singer, model, and producer, considered one of the greatest European actresses. She gained recognition for her portrayal of icy, aloof, and mysterious beauties for various directors, including Luis Buñuel, François Truffaut, and Roman Polanski. In 1985, she succeeded Mireille Mathieu as the official face of Marianne, France's national symbol of liberty. A 14-time César Award nominee, she won for her performances in Truffaut's The Last Metro (1980), for which she also won the David di Donatello for Best Foreign Actress, and Régis Wargnier's Indochine (1992).
Susan Abigail Sarandon is an American actress, activist, and producer. She is the recipient of numerous accolades, including an Academy Award, a BAFTA Award, and a SAG Award, and has been nominated for a Daytime Emmy Award, six Primetime Emmy Awards, and nine Golden Globe Awards. In 2002, she was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for her contributions to the film industry.
Harvey Keitel is an American actor and producer. He has played in such films as Mean Streets (1973), Taxi Driver (1976), Blue Collar (1978), The Last Temptation of Christ (1988), Thelma & Louise (1991), Reservoir Dogs (1992), Bad Lieutenant (1992), The Piano (1993), Pulp Fiction (1994), From Dusk till Dawn (1996), Cop Land (1997), Red Dragon (2002), National Treasure (2004), The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014), Youth (2015) and The Irishman (2019). He has also played Lieutenant Gene Hunt on Life On Mars (2008–2009).
Emma Charlotte Duerre Watson is an English actress and activist. She has gained recognition for her roles in both blockbusters and independent films, as well as her women's rights work. Watson has been ranked among the world's highest-paid actresses by Forbes and Vanity Fair, and was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time magazine in 2015.
Virginia Elizabeth Davis is an American actress, advocate for gender equality, executive producer, and former model. She is the recipient of an Academy Award and a Golden Globe Award, in addition to nominations for a British Academy Film Award and a Primetime Emmy Award. In 2019, she was awarded the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award for the work she has done over the decades to fight gender bias on and off the screen in Hollywood.
The 1992 MTV Movie Awards was hosted by Dennis Miller.
A League of Their Own is a 1992 American sports comedy-drama film that tells a fictionalized account of the real-life All-American Girls Professional Baseball League (AAGPBL). Directed by Penny Marshall, the film stars Tom Hanks, Geena Davis, Madonna, Rosie O'Donnell, and Lori Petty. The screenplay was written by Lowell Ganz and Babaloo Mandel from a story by Kelly Candaele and Kim Wilson.
Michael Madsen is an American actor, producer, director, writer, poet and photographer. His first major film role was in Thelma & Louise. He has collaborated with Quentin Tarantino multiple times. Known for playing "charming, careless, terrifying bastards", Madsen has starred in many films and television series.
Mary-Louise Parker is an American actress and writer. After making her Broadway debut as Rita in Craig Lucas's Prelude to a Kiss in 1990, Parker came to prominence for film roles in Grand Canyon (1991), Fried Green Tomatoes (1991), The Client (1994), Bullets over Broadway (1994), A Place for Annie (1994), Boys on the Side (1995), The Portrait of a Lady (1996), and The Maker (1997). Among stage and independent film appearances thereafter, Parker received the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play for her portrayal of Catherine Llewellyn in David Auburn's Proof in 2001, among other accolades. Between 2001 and 2006, she recurred as Amy Gardner on the NBC television series The West Wing, for which she was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series in 2002. She received both a Golden Globe and a Primetime Emmy Award for her portrayal of Harper Pitt on the acclaimed HBO television miniseries Angels in America in 2003.
Louise Jameson is an English actress, with a wide variety of television and theatre credits. Her roles on television have included playing Leela in Doctor Who (1977—1978), Dr. Anne Reynolds in The Omega Factor (1979), Blanche Simmons in Tenko (1981—1982), Susan Young in Bergerac (1985—1990) and Rosa di Marco in EastEnders (1998—2000).
Lizzie Borden is an American filmmaker, and is best known for the 1983 film Born in Flames.
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The buddy film is a subgenre of adventure and comedy film in which two people—often both men—are put together and on an adventure, a quest, or a road trip. The two often contrast in personality, which creates a different dynamic onscreen than a pairing of two people of the opposite gender. The contrast is sometimes accentuated by an ethnic difference between the two. The buddy film is commonplace in American cinema; unlike some other film genres, it endured through the 20th century with different pairings and different themes.
Chloë Grace Moretz is an American actress. She began acting as a child, with early roles in the supernatural horror film The Amityville Horror (2005), the drama series Desperate Housewives (2006–07), the supernatural horror film The Eye (2008), the drama film The Poker House (2008), the drama series Dirty Sexy Money (2007–08), the romantic comedy film 500 Days of Summer (2009) and the children's comedy film Diary of a Wimpy Kid (2010). Her breakthrough came in 2010 with her critically acclaimed performances as Hit-Girl in the superhero film Kick-Ass and as a child vampire in the horror film Let Me In.
Carolyn Ann "Callie" Khouri is an American film and television screenwriter, producer, and director. In 1992, she won the Academy Award for Best Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen for the film Thelma & Louise, which was controversial upon its release, but which subsequently became a classic. It was inducted into the Library of Congress National Film Registry in December 2016.
The 26th National Society of Film Critics Awards, given on 5 January 1992, honored the best filmmaking of 1991.
The 4th Chicago Film Critics Association Awards were announced on March 5, 1992 during a ceremony at The Pump Room. They honored the finest achievements in 1991 filmmaking. The nominees were revealed in January 1992. Thelma & Louise and Barton Fink tied for the most nominations with six each. The Silence of the Lambs earned the most awards (5), including Best Film.
Naomi Grace Scott is an English actress and singer. Born in Hounslow, she rose to prominence for her performances in the television film Lemonade Mouth (2011) and the science fiction series Terra Nova (2011). Scott achieved recognition for starring as Princess Jasmine in Disney's musical live-action fantasy film Aladdin (2019). She has also starred in the superhero film Power Rangers (2017) and the action comedy film Charlie's Angels (2019).
Shira Haas is an Israeli actress. She initially gained national prominence for her roles in local film and television, having won two Israeli Ophir Awards out of five nominations since 2014. In 2020, she gained international acclaim for her role in the Netflix miniseries Unorthodox. With this performance, she became the first Israeli actor to be nominated for a Golden Globe Award and a Primetime Emmy Award. In the same year, Haas won the Tribeca Film Festival Award for Best International Actress for her performance in the Israeli drama film Asia (2020).
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