DVD Being There [DVD] [] [1900] [English] [Region 1] (DVD 4407172),
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Being There [DVD] [] [1900] [English] [Region 1]

  • PG
  • DVD
  • 1 disc
  • Region 1 USA/CA (info)
  • BEING THERE is based on Jerzy Kosinski's short comic novel about a simpleton, Chance (Peter Sellers), raised in isolation whose only education came from watching TV. When he's forced out of the house where he worked as a gardener by the death of the wealthy recluse who raised him from infancy, he's fortuitously struck by a limousine carrying Eve Rand (Shirley MacLaine), the wife of a wealthy industrialist. He's mistaken, because of his well-tailored suits, for a man of means and taken to dinner with her husband, Ben Rand (Melvyn Douglas). There, as Chauncy Gardner, his blank affect is taken for seriousness and his literal pronouncements about gardening for metaphoric economic predictions. Soon he's meeting the president (Jack Warden) and becoming a star on TV--where he's a natural.

    Kosinski was well known to be personally fascinated by the power of television. In BEING THERE, which he adapted for the screen himself, he presents a comic fable about a man whose entire sense of reality came from watching television. Sellers is marvelous as the always-deadpan cipher in whom everyone he meets sees whatever it is they need to see. Shirley MacLaine, Jack Warden, and Melvyn Douglas give outstanding performances in this biting satire directed by Hal Ashby.

    Academy Awards Best Supporting Actor 1979 Melvyn Douglas American Actor

  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 1000042577

  • Credits
    Peter Sellers, Richard Henry Sellers, Melvyn Douglas, Melvyn Edouard Hesselberg, Shirley MacLaine, Shirley MacLaine Beaty, Jack Warden, Richard Dysart, Richard A. Dysart, Richard Basehart
  • Critic Reviews
    "...Deadpan farce....Sellers in his greatest performance..." -- Rating: A-
    Entertainment Weekly

    "...A stately, beautifully acted satire....Sellers never strikes a false note..."
    New York Times

    "...A rare and subtle bird that finds its tone and sticks with it. It has the appeal of an ingenious intellectual game..."
    Chicago Sun-Times

    "[Chance] is a cipher both funny and frightening, making utter vacancy look like Zen inscrutability."

    4 stars out of 5 -- "[A] strange, evocative swan song whose charm is still strong after 30 years....It's an uncanny part for Sellers, who by repute was an empty vessel into which characters were poured."

    4 stars out of 5 -- "Peter Sellers redeemed himself with one last major turn in BEING THERE....This is an exceptional comedy..."
    Total Film

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