7.4/10
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133 user 54 critic

The Unbearable Lightness of Being (1988)

In 1968, a Czech doctor with an active sex life meets a woman who wants monogamy, and then the Soviet invasion further disrupts their lives.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
3,312 ( 107)

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ON DISC
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
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...
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Franz
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The Ambassador
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Pavel
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Chief Surgeon
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Interior Ministry Official
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The Engineer
Tomasz Borkowy ...
Jiri (as Tomek Bork)
Bruce Myers ...
Czech Editor
Pavel Slabý ...
Pavel's Nephew
Pascale Kalensky ...
Nurse Katja
Jacques Ciron ...
Swiss Restaurant Manager
Anne Lonnberg ...
Swiss Photographer
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Storyline

Tomas is a doctor and a lady-killer in 1960s Czechoslovakia, an apolitical man who is struck with love for the bookish country girl Tereza; his more sophisticated sometime lover Sabina eventually accepts their relationship and the two women form an electric friendship. The three are caught up in the events of the Prague Spring (1968), until the Soviet tanks crush the non-violent rebels; their illusions are shattered and their lives change forever. Written by Dan Hartung <dhartung@mcs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A Lovers Story.

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

5 February 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La insoportable levedad del ser  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$17,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$202,189 (USA) (5 February 1988)

Gross:

$10,006,806 (USA)
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Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Daniel Day-Lewis at first turned down the role feeling the script made him too nice. The script was revised and added in things from the book that made the character less "perfect". See more »

Goofs

DX-coded film was not invented until the 1980s. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
First Title Card: In Prague, in 1968, there lived a young doctor named Tomas...
Tomas: Take off your clothes.
[line recurs several times during film]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in L.A. Law: The Unbearable Lightness of Boring (1989) See more »

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User Reviews

Previous reviewer misunderstood movie...
21 July 2003 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

I would have to disagree with the previous reviewer. First of all, the movie should have a "euro" feel to it because it's about Europeans, in Europe, and their European mentality. No car chases here, hot shot. That being said, I only have great praise for this film. It's a tremendous attempt to put to screen the subtle understanding Milan Kundera has of the human condition, and it surprisingly succeeds. For those more interested, I recommend you pick up some of his novels (start with a short story if you are pressed for time) and you, too, will realize why he is one of the best storytellers alive today.


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