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The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008)

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Tells the story of Benjamin Button, a man who starts aging backwards with bizarre consequences.

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(screenplay), (story) | 2 more credits »
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428 ( 87)
Won 3 Oscars. Another 77 wins & 155 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Dorothy Baker (as Faune Chambers)
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Martin Gateau (as Jacob Wood)
Earl Maddox ...
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Priest Giving Last Rites
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Doctor at Benjamin's Birth
Johanna Roxanne ...
Caroline Button (as Joeanna Sayler)
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Tizzy (as Mahershalalhashbaz Ali)
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Storyline

On the day that Hurricane Katrina hits New Orleans, elderly Daisy Williams (nee Fuller) is on her deathbed in a New Orleans hospital. At her side is her adult daughter, Caroline. Daisy asks Caroline to read to her aloud the diary of Daisy's lifelong friend, Benjamin Button. Benjamin's diary recounts his entire extraordinary life, the primary unusual aspect of which was his aging backwards, being diagnosed with several aging diseases at birth and thus given little chance of survival, but who does survive and gets younger with time. Abandoned by his biological father, Thomas Button, after Benjamin's biological mother died in childbirth, Benjamin was raised by Queenie, a black woman and caregiver at a seniors home. Daisy's grandmother was a resident at that home, which is where she first met Benjamin. Although separated through the years, Daisy and Benjamin remain in contact throughout their lives, reconnecting in their forties when in age they finally match up. Some of the revelations ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Life isn't measured in minutes, but in moments See more »

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for brief war violence, sexual content, language and smoking | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

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Release Date:

25 December 2008 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Benjamin Button  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$150,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$26,853,816 (USA) (26 December 2008)

Gross:

$127,490,802 (USA) (17 April 2009)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Danny Boyle pushed his Solomon Grundy project back because he thought this story and "Solomon Grundy" were too similar. See more »

Goofs

Oti is referred to as a pygmy and refers to madjembe (a pygmy word for intestinal worms) which places him as a native of The Congo or Central African Republic. However, he tells Benjamin that his country has been divided by the English and Dutch. The [now: Democratic Republic of] Congo and Central African Republic were only colonized by Belgium and France respectively, while Great Britain and The Netherlands colonized South Africa. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Daisy: What are you looking at, Caroline?
Caroline: The wind, mom.
[yawns]
Caroline: They say the hurricane is coming.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Paramount and Warner Bros. logos are in the form of mosaics constructed from several buttons. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Community: Football, Feminism and You (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

That's How Rhythm Was Born
Written by Nat Burton, J.C. Johnson and George Whiting
Performed by The Boswell Sisters
Courtesy of Columbia Records
By Arrangement with SONY BMG Music Entertainment
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
An Astonishing Rarity
26 December 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button is a film unlike any I've ever seen and probably ever will. A true epic that left me utterly speechless. It accomplished so much through such simplicity. Everything was top notch from the elegant directing to the subtly wonderful performances down to the magical score. The film demands you to feel not only for the death we witness, but for the incredible life we discover. It prays on the obvious morality issues we all deal with but also dangles the idea in front of us that everyone goes through the same joys and grievances, just not in the same way. This is a momentous tale that deserves nothing less than the title of brilliance.

This visually and emotionally rich movie recalls the life of a very peculiar man born in the early 20th century who ages backwards. His tale unfolds through a diary read by the daughter of his love, Daisy. Throughout life he goes through the same things we do, growing up and eventually growing old. He's a thoughtful observer, discovering life from all different angles. But it is not his life that makes him unique. His love is what makes him special. He spends a lifetime trying to understand how his love for Daisy works and still only gets a few incredible years really loving her. As their lives tell us, the years of frustration and hardship are all worth it if only for a few moments of happiness.

The direction in the film is almost flawless. Hopefully, Benjamin Button will garner David Fincher the recognition he deserves. He winds this clock so well and with such grace that the movie has this undeniable flow that is enjoyable from start to finish. At nearly 3 hours, there is not a minute wasted. Every shot is jaw dropping and while some will find issue with the time, it is used wisely.

The acting is also a thing of wonder. This is by far Brad Pitt's best performance. He is so believable and realistic throughout. His nuances are spot on and despite the heavy use of make-up and CGI used to portray his character, it is Pitt who makes Benjamin that much more curious.

I left the theater astonished that some one could review this movie badly. It is an extremely graceful depiction of life, love, and the things we lose. After so much anticipation I was certainly not disappointed. This movie is probably not for everyone though. It's not your average drama that spoon feeds it's audience their emotions. It is something of awe and astonishment, an absolute gem. What makes our lives memorable are the moments we never seem to grasp long enough before letting go. Life in itself is indeed very, very curious and Benjamin Button is no less of a wonder.


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