I Love You Phillip Morris (2009) Poster

I Love You Phillip Morris (2009)

  • Rate: 6.7/10 total 39,179 votes 
  • Genre: Comedy | Drama | Romance
  • Release Date: 10 February 2010 (Belgium)
  • Runtime: Germany:102 min (European Film Market) | USA:98 min
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I Love You Phillip Morris (2009)


I Love You Phillip Morris 2009tt1045772.jpg poster

  • IMDb page: I Love You Phillip Morris (2009)
  • Rate: 6.7/10 total 39,179 votes 
  • Genre: Comedy | Drama | Romance
  • Release Date: 10 February 2010 (Belgium)
  • Runtime: Germany:102 min (European Film Market) | USA:98 min
  • Filming Location: Los Angeles, California, USA
  • Budget: $13,000,000(estimated)
  • Gross: $2,035,566(USA)(10 April 2011)
  • Stars: Jim Carrey, Ewan McGregor and Leslie Mann
  • Original Music By: Nick Urata   
  • Soundtrack: Chances Are
  • Sound Mix: Dolby Digital | DTS
  • Plot Keyword: Jail | Con Artist | Devotion | Police | Fraud

Writing Credits By:

  • John Requa (written by) &
  • Glenn Ficarra (written by)
  • Steve McVicker (book "I Love You Phillip Morris: A True Story of Life, Love, and Prison Breaks") (as Steven McVicker)

Known Trivia

  • The film is based on the real life story of Steven Jay Russell.
  • While on set in New Orleans and filming at the Orleans Parish Prison, one of the extras dressed as an OPP inmate was arrested by a real OPP Jail guard after leaving the set in costume to put belongings in his personal vehicle.
  • Had already made more than US$18 million internationally (exceeding its US$13 million budget) before it opened in the United States.
  • Jim Carrey shaved his hairline back because he thought of his character Steven Russell as a very cerebral person.

Goofs: Anachronisms: The personalized license plates "STEVEN 1" and "PHILLIP 1" were not available in Texas in 1995. Texas allows a maximum of 6 characters for personalized license plates. 7 characters will be allowed beginning sometime in 2011.

Plot: Steven Russell is happily married to Debbie, and a member of the local police force when a car accident provokes a dramatic reassessment of his life… See more »  »

Story: Steven Russell is happily married to Debbie, and a member of the local police force when a car accident provokes a dramatic reassessment of his life. Steven becomes open about his homosexuality and decides to live life to the fullest – even if it means breaking the law. Steven's new, extravagant lifestyle involves cons and fraud and, eventually, a stay in the State Penitentiary where he meets sensitive, soft-spoken Phillip Morris. His devotion to freeing Phillip from jail and building the perfect life together prompts Steven to attempt and often succeed at one impossible con after another.Written by The Film Catalogue  


Synopsis: The story begins with Stephen Russell (Jim Carrey), lying weak in a hospital bed, recalling the events of his life that led him there. He begins with his mundane life in Texas as a police officer with a pious wife (Leslie Mann) and a young daughter. Stephen spends his off hours searching for the biological mother who gave him up as a child. He had been hiding the fact that he is gay for his entire life.

After finally finding his biological mother and being handily rejected (a flashback shows a young Stephen watching clouds with his friends, commenting that one cloud "looks like a wiener"), and later surviving a car crash, Stephen decides to live the rest of his life as his true self. He breaks the news to his wife, who is fairly accepting, and keeps in touch with her and his daughter while he pursues a new life as an openly gay man. He moves to Miami, finds a boyfriend (Rodrigo Santoro) and begins a happy new life. He realizes quickly though, that "being gay is really expensive", leading him to become a con man to support his lifestyle. But when his financial frauds finally catch up with him, Stephen is sent to prison where he meets a sweet and soft-spoken inmate, Phillip Morris (Ewan McGregor). They instantly bond, but Phillip (who was arrested for keeping a rental car too long) is transferred to another prison location. determined to be with Phillip, Stephen pulls some strings and has himself transferred to the other location and shares a cell with Phillip. Their romance blossoms.

Stephen is released from jail, and manages to get Phillip freed as well by posing as a lawyer. They happily begin a life together, and Stephen cons his way into a high-paying job as a financial manager. However, he slips even further back into his old ways, and is soon embezzling large amounts of money from the company. This begins to land him in hot water, and Phillip suspects there is something that Stephen is not telling him. He is soon caught and sent back to prison, with Phillip being arrested as an accomplice. A furious Phillip is incredibly hurt by Stephen’s lies, and refuses to see him again.

Soon afterward, Stephen shows signs of illness and is diagnosed with AIDS. He is sent to an outside hospital. Phillip is told the news by another inmate and is told that Stephen has very little time left. Phillip calls Stephen in the hospital, breaking down and telling him that, while he is still angry, he will be in love with Stephen always. Stephen is moved to tears.Later, Phillip receives the news that Stephen had died.

Phillip is later called to a private meeting with his "lawyer," and finds Stephen waiting for him in perfect health. Phillip slaps him in the face, and Stephen explains how he had faked the entire illness (including altering medical forms) to get out of jail and see Phillip again. Stephen thought of his plan when sadly remembering his last boyfriend, Jimmy, who had succumbed to the disease. He swears to never lie again. He attempts one last con to break Phillip out, but is caught again after running into a co-worker from the company he had stolen from. Sent back to jail again, Stephen is put on 23-hour lockdown, with only one hour a day to exit his cell. Phillip was released in 2006.

The last scene shows Stephen, who has never given up on his goal of being with Phillip, laughing joyfully while running across the prison yard pursued by guards.

From there the story becomes a Don Quixote-esque story of a forlorn lover who cannot bear to be separated from his soul-mate. He will go to any lengths to be with Phillip, including but not limited to breaking out of jail on multiple occasions, impersonating Phillips lawyer and fraudulently becoming the CFO of a major corporation.


FullCast & Crew

Produced By:

  • Luc Besson known as executive producer
  • Linda Fields known as associate producer (as Linda Fields Hill)
  • Jeffrey Harlacker known as associate producer
  • Andrew Lazar known as producer
  • Richard Middleton known as line producer
  • Far Shariat known as producer
  • Miri Yoon known as co-producer

FullCast & Crew:

  • Jim Carrey known as Steven Russell
  • Ewan McGregor known as Phillip Morris
  • Leslie Mann known as Debbie
  • Rodrigo Santoro known as Jimmy
  • Antoni Corone known as Dan Lindholm
  • Brennan Brown known as Larry Birkheim
  • Michael Mandel known as Cleavon (as Michael Mandell)
  • Annie Golden known as Eudora
  • Marylouise Burke known as Barbara Bascombe (as Mary Louise Burke)
  • David Jensen known as Judge
  • Dameon Clarke known as Houston Lawyer
  • Nicholas Alexander known as Steven's 11-Year-Old Brother
  • Clay Chamberlin known as Cellmate – Arnie
  • Louis Herthum known as Doctor
  • Morgana Shaw known as Steven's Mom
  • Joe Chrest known as Steven's Dad
  • Griff Furst known as Mark
  • Aunjanue Ellis known as Reba
  • DeVere Jehl known as Samuel
  • Michael Showers known as Gary
  • Beth Burvant known as Sara
  • Ladson Deyne known as Neil (as Deyne Ladson)
  • Kennon Kepper known as 9-Year-Old Steven (as John Kennon Kepper)
  • Alyssa Tate known as Child Stephanie
  • Andrew Sensenig known as Screecher
  • David Stanford known as Paramedic
  • Bill Dykes known as Latino Man
  • Tony Bentley known as Racist Client
  • Kathrin Middleton known as Saleswoman
  • Donovan Guidry known as The Moustached Man
  • Michael Beasley known as Release Officer
  • Sean Boyd known as Policeman
  • Maureen Brennan known as Vera
  • Marcus Lyle Brown known as Young Doctor
  • Trey Burvant known as Blake
  • Ken Clement known as County Corrections Officer
  • Miriam Cruz known as Helen
  • David Dahlgren known as Physician
  • Tommy Davis known as Todd
  • Michael Ducote known as SWAT Commander
  • Ashley Duggan Smith known as Secretary #3 (as Ashley Duggan-Smith)
  • Lela Edgar known as Blonde Wife
  • J.D. Evermore known as Bossy Guard
  • Jon Eyez known as Second Prisoner
  • Evan Fitzpatrick known as Red-Haired Boy
  • Shane Fitzpatrick known as Little Girl
  • Shane Fuller known as Male Nurse
  • Jeff Galpin known as Lead Officer
  • Larry Gamell Jr. known as Driving Cop (as Lawrence Gamell Jr.)
  • Jim Garrity known as Night Guard (as James Garrity)
  • Leon Gisclair known as Little Boy
  • Geraldine Glenn known as Mandi
  • Douglas M. Griffin known as Steven's Attorney
  • Jessica Heap known as Secretary
  • Tim Hickey known as Blond Inmate
  • Keith Hudson known as Produce Manager
  • Jeremy Aaron Johnson known as Policeman #1
  • Jacqueline King known as Lawyer
  • Alexa Kuve known as Cherubic Secretary
  • Frederick Lewis known as Yoakum
  • Sharon K. London known as Clerk (as Sharon London)
  • Audrey Lynn known as Married Woman
  • Marc Macaulay known as Houston Cop
  • Reginald Mack known as Jail Guard
  • Danny Marin known as Infirmary Orderly
  • Sammi-Jack Martincak known as 12-Year-Old Stephanie (as Sammi Jack Martincak)
  • Ann McKenzie known as Facelift Wife
  • Thelma Medina known as Huge Nurse
  • Wendy Michaels known as Housewife
  • John J. Mourain known as Taxi Driver (as John Mourain)
  • Randall Newsome known as Cop
  • Lance E. Nichols known as Houston Judge (as Lance Nichols)
  • Antonino Paone known as Cab Driver (as Antonio Paone)
  • Liann Pattison known as Mrs. Lindholm
  • Sherrie Peterson known as Female D.A.
  • Clyde Raymond known as Houston Doctor
  • Dane Rhodes known as Bald Prisoner
  • Johnny Rock known as New Cellmate
  • Archie Sampier known as Yard Guard
  • Andy Sims known as Corrections Officer
  • Aron Ten Eyck known as Policeman #2
  • Thomas Thomason known as Lawrence
  • Deneen Tyler known as Caretaker (as Deneen D. Tyler)
  • Chris Wecklein known as Baylor
  • Scotty Whitehurst known as Orderly
  • B. Martin Williams known as Duty Officer (as Bill Martin Williams)
  • Jaymon Yates known as First Prisoner
  • Don Yesso known as Guard
  • Gabby Barnes known as Girl at BBQ (uncredited)
  • Brett Beoubay known as Gala Attendee / Jr. Exec. (uncredited)
  • Rhonda Castagna known as Shopper (uncredited)
  • Samuel Davenport known as Court Bailiff (uncredited)
  • Joshua Davis known as Boy at BBQ (uncredited)
  • Larry Jack Dotson known as Golfer (uncredited)
  • Cy Fahrenholtz known as Library Prisoner (uncredited)
  • John Gorman known as Sheriff Deputy (uncredited)
  • Bobby Guntner known as Miami Cop (uncredited)
  • Russell M. Haeuser known as Houston Gala patron (uncredited)
  • Melissa S. Harris known as Exec. Wife-Gala Attendee (uncredited)
  • Randy Herman known as Steven's Dance Partner (uncredited)
  • Cynthia LeBlanc known as Juror #5 (uncredited)
  • Elton LeBlanc known as Fireman / Insurance Excecutive (uncredited)
  • Don Mac known as Swat Team Member (uncredited)
  • Jake Moran known as Aryan (uncredited)
  • Robert Nuzzie known as Bartender (uncredited)
  • Gianni Palermo known as Inmate (uncredited)
  • Chris Shaw known as Bar Patron (uncredited)
  • Gary Michael Smith known as Millionaire (uncredited)
  • Lisa Mackel Smith known as Care Center Rep (uncredited)
  • Terry Lee Smith known as Church Member (uncredited)
  • Carlos Thomas known as Hospital Guard (uncredited)
  • Ana Villafañe known as Bikini Girl (uncredited)
  • Jake Austin Walker known as Chruch Boy (uncredited)
  • Jaycie Walker known as Church Girl (uncredited)



Supporting Department

Makeup Department:
  • Linda De Andrea known as key hair stylist
  • Joel Harlow known as key makeup artist
  • Lana Heying known as hair stylist
  • Courtney Lether known as makeup artist
  • Rose Librizzi known as makeup artist (as Rose Librizi-David)
  • Ve Neill known as makeup department head
  • Scott H. Reeder known as hair stylist (as Scott Reeder)
  • Kimberly Amacker known as makeup artist (uncredited)
  • Sherri Hamilton known as hair stylist (uncredited)
  • Stacey Herbert known as makeup artist (uncredited)
  • Krystal Kershaw known as makeup artist (uncredited)

Art Department:

  • Irwin Ainsworth known as tool mechanic
  • Tom Ashburn known as on-set scenic artist
  • Liz Barker known as art department production assistant (as Elizabeth Barker)
  • Scott C. Bivona known as lead greensman (as Scott Bivona)
  • John Blanchard known as construction foreman
  • William Burck known as propmaker
  • Andrew M. Casbon III known as scenic artist (as Andrew Casbon III)
  • Bucky Chase known as set dresser: Florida
  • Iggy Colomer known as set dresser
  • Joe Connolly known as property master
  • Gus Coto known as leadman
  • Daniel Coulthard known as set dresser
  • John Coven known as storyboard artist
  • Robert Crowley known as leadman: Florida (as Bob Crowley)
  • Michael Dares known as set dresser (as Mike Dares)
  • Melissa Marie Davis known as art department production assistant: Florida (as Melissa Marie Davis-Perkel)
  • Ryan Martin Dwyer known as on-set dresser (as Ryan 'Owl' Dwyer)
  • Mike Fitzgerald known as set dresser: Florida
  • Graylan Franklin known as set decorator: Florida
  • Gregory T. Geniusz known as set dresser (as Greg Geniusz)
  • Drew Guajardo known as props assistant
  • James Harris known as construction coordinator: Florida
  • Claire Hassig known as scenic artist (as A. Claire Hassig)
  • Lawrence Heap known as set dresser
  • Elizabeth Humphrey known as set dressing buyer (as Elizabeth Humphrey)
  • Troy A. Johnson known as construction buyer (as Troy Johnson)
  • Tammye Kady known as art department coordinator (as Tam Kady)
  • David Keifer known as propmaker
  • Robert Kopp known as greensman: Florida
  • George A. Lee known as assistant property master (as George Lee)
  • Mara LePere-Schloop known as assistant art director
  • Andrew H. Lewis known as scenic artist (as Andrew Lewus)
  • Carl Mastio known as greensman
  • Regina McLarney known as art director: Florida (as Regina McLarney-Crowley)
  • Myron Meek known as gang boss
  • Pavel Pesta known as paint foreman
  • Kim Pierce known as buyer: Florida
  • Louis F. Rabion known as scenic gang boss (as Louis Rabion)
  • John R. Salemi known as lead scenic artist: Florida (as John Selemi)
  • Paul Samchez known as greensman
  • George Sanchez known as scenic artist (as George Sanchez Jr.)
  • Joaquin Sanchez known as scenic utility
  • Karyn Schubert known as graphic artist
  • Brett Smith known as propmaker
  • Brent Stewart known as construction location foreman
  • Chuck Stringer known as construction coordinator (as George 'Chuck' Stringer)
  • Charles Tatum known as construction utility
  • J.C. Turek known as set dresser: Florida
  • Bill Walters known as set dresser
  • Steve Walters known as head scenic artist (as Stephen Walters)
  • Thomas 'Noe' Welch known as set dresser (as Noe Welch)
  • Dan Wilkerson known as on-set dresser: Florida
  • Lewis Zucker known as props assistant: Florida
  • Luke Cauthern known as set dresser (uncredited)
  • Moira Glace known as art department production assistant (uncredited)
  • Juliana Hoffpauir known as set decoration buyer (uncredited)
  • Joe Walsh known as set dresser (uncredited)




Production Companies:

  • Europa Corp. (as EuropaCorp) (presents)
  • Mad Chance
  • Consolidated Pictures Group

Other Companies:

  • Catering By Sally  catering
  • Chapman/Leonard Studio Equipment  camera car
  • Chapman/Leonard Studio Equipment  camera cranes
  • Chapman/Leonard Studio Equipment  camera dollies
  • Chapman/Leonard Studio Equipment  hydrascope telescoping crane arm
  • Chapman/Leonard Studio Equipment  remote camera systems
  • Cineworks Digital Studios  HD dailies
  • Coulon Casting  extras casting
  • Digital Factory  post-production facilities
  • Dolby Laboratories  sound mix
  • Event Rental  locations equipment rentals
  • Event Rental  portable power systems and cables
  • Event Rental  props
  • Film Production Capital  tax credit brokering
  • Hollywood Trucks  entertainment transportation
  • LCW Props  set equipment
  • LaserPacific  digital intermediate
  • Lightnin' Production Rentals  transportation equipment
  • Los Angeles Rag House  grip and lighting equipment
  • Louisiana Entertainment  state film office
  • Louisiana Media Productions  production services
  • New Orleans Film Commission, The  film commission
  • On Tour Productions  grip and lighting equipment
  • POP Sound  adr facility
  • Panavision Remote Systems  Supertechno crane provided by
  • Paramount Transportation Services  transportation services
  • Pivotal Post  Avid editing equipment provided by
  • Pivotal Post  editorial facilities
  • River Road Creative  main title design and production
  • Rockbottom Rentals  cell phone rentals
  • Rockbottom Rentals  junxion box rentals
  • Rockbottom Rentals  walkie rentals
  • Scarlet Letters  end titles
  • Star Waggons  star trailers
  • TVA Productions  media agency
  • TVA Productions  special thanks
  • Westside Pacific Studio  score mixing facility


  • EuropaCorp. Distribution (2010) (France) (theatrical)
  • Fox Pathé Europa (2010) (France) (DVD)
  • Alamode Film (2010) (Germany) (theatrical)
  • Alliance Films (2011) (Canada) (theatrical)
  • Asmik Ace Entertainment (2010) (Japan) (theatrical)
  • Aurum Producciones (2010) (Spain) (theatrical)
  • Bioscop (2010) (Czech Republic) (theatrical)
  • Cathay-Keris Films (2010) (Singapore) (theatrical)
  • Cinestar (2010) (Philippines) (theatrical)
  • Diamond Films (2010) (Argentina) (theatrical)
  • E1 Entertainment (2010) (UK) (theatrical)
  • Festive Films (2010) (Singapore) (theatrical)
  • Filmopolis (2010) (Greece) (theatrical)
  • Independent Films (2010) (Netherlands) (theatrical)
  • Liddell Entertainment (2010) (USA) (theatrical)
  • Lucky Red (2010) (Italy) (theatrical)
  • Roadside Attractions (2010) (USA) (theatrical)
  • Scanbox Entertainment (2010) (Sweden) (theatrical)
  • CN Entertainment (2010) (Hong Kong) (DVD)
  • CN Entertainment (2010) (Hong Kong) (DVD) (Blu-ray)
  • E1 Entertainment (2010) (UK) (DVD)
  • Film1 (2011) (Netherlands) (TV) (limited)
  • Imagem Filmes (2010) (Brazil) (all media)
  • Laptv (2010) (Argentina) (TV)
  • Scanbox Entertainment (2011) (Denmark) (all media)
  • Scanbox Entertainment (2010) (Finland) (all media)
  • Scanbox Entertainment (2010) (Sweden) (DVD)
  • Scanbox Entertainment (2010) (Sweden) (DVD) (Blu-ray)
  • Volga Film (2010) (Russia) (all media)
  • Warner Home Video (2010) (Netherlands) (DVD)
  • Warner Home Video (2010) (Netherlands) (DVD) (Blu-ray)
  • Zon Lusomundo Audiovisuais (2010) (Portugal) (all media)



Other Stuff

Special Effects:

  • RhinoFX (visual effects)

Visual Effects by:

  • Anton Anderson known as flame assistant: RhinoFX
  • Cara Buckley known as visual effects producer: RhinoFX
  • Chris Ficarra known as additional plate photographer: RhinoFX
  • Barry Furlano known as flame assistant: RhinoFX
  • Linda Gallagher known as flame manager: RhinoFX
  • Camille Geier known as visual effects executive producer: RhinoFX
  • Yuval Levy known as CG supervisor: RhinoFX
  • Manuel Llamas known as fusion compositor: RhinoFX
  • Damian McDonnell known as additional digital intermediate colorist
  • Bogdan Mihajlovic known as digital tracker: RhinoFX
  • Lauren Montuori known as visual effects production manager: RhinoFX
  • Kevin Quinlan known as flame compositor: RhinoFX
  • David W. Reynolds known as flame compositor: RhinoFX
  • Jim Rider known as visual effects supervisor: RhinoFX
  • Rich Shurtliff known as it engineer: RhinoFX
  • Marc Steinberg known as visual effects designer: RhinoFX
  • Hili Tsarfati known as visual effects designer: RhinoFX
  • Mandy Arnold known as digital restoration artist (uncredited)
  • Karin Levinson known as production executive: RhinoFX (uncredited)

Release Date:

  • USA 18 January 2009 (Sundance Film Festival)
  • Germany 7 February 2009 (European Film Market)
  • France 19 May 2009 (Cannes Film Festival)
  • Brazil 23 October 2009 (São Paulo International Film Festival)
  • France 22 November 2009 (Paris Gay and Lesbian Film Festival)
  • Sweden January 2010 (Göteborg International Film Festival)
  • USA January 2010 (Palm Springs International Film Festival)
  • Argentina 3 February 2010 (TV premiere)
  • Belgium 10 February 2010
  • France 10 February 2010
  • Switzerland 10 February 2010 (French speaking region)
  • Russia 11 February 2010
  • Taiwan 12 February 2010
  • Finland 26 February 2010
  • Sweden 26 February 2010
  • Estonia 5 March 2010
  • Lithuania 5 March 2010
  • Kazakhstan 11 March 2010
  • Japan 13 March 2010
  • Ireland 17 March 2010
  • UK 17 March 2010
  • Switzerland 18 March 2010 (German speaking region)
  • Philippines 24 March 2010
  • Czech Republic 25 March 2010
  • Iceland 31 March 2010
  • Italy 2 April 2010
  • Denmark 15 April 2010
  • Netherlands 22 April 2010
  • Portugal 22 April 2010
  • Germany 29 April 2010
  • Hong Kong 20 May 2010
  • Poland 21 May 2010
  • Brazil 4 June 2010
  • Croatia 17 June 2010
  • Israel 1 July 2010
  • Israel 1 July 2010 (limited)
  • South Korea 1 July 2010
  • Mexico 2 July 2010
  • Greece 8 July 2010
  • Hungary 8 July 2010
  • Austria 16 July 2010
  • Australia 30 July 2010 (Melbourne International Film Festival)
  • Spain 13 August 2010
  • Argentina 23 September 2010
  • Singapore 30 September 2010
  • USA 6 November 2010 (Denver International Film Festival)
  • USA 3 December 2010 (limited)
  • Chile 16 December 2010

MPAA: Rated R for sexual content including strong dialogue, and language



Filmography links and data courtesy of The Internet Movie Database

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Posted on March 30, 2012 by Harry in Movies | Tags: , , , .


  1. the-ppfitzgeralds from Ireland
    30 Mar 2012, 5:11 am

    It's more unique than rare that a film affects me this much. Thecenter, the emotional center of Phillip Morris has entered mysubconscious in a way that I can't quite describe. It changed myperception of things. This is the first time I see two men kissing thatmade complete sense. I believe and understood like never before the"normalness" of the feeling. I liked "Brokeback Mountain" too but inthat case, the torturous path of self-loathing that the Heath Ledgercharacter goes trough, kept me at the periphery of the story like asympathetic, moved spectator. Here I was part of it, of them. I'm sureJim Carrey and Ewan McGregor have a lot to do with it. No cheap shots,no low comedy. They are so true that you can't help loving them androoting for them, flaws and all. I predict "I Love You Phillip Morris"will become the sleeper of 2009.

  2. marcosaguado from Los Angeles, USA
    30 Mar 2012, 5:11 am

    A packed screening at the Sunset 5 in Hollywood. The audience rewardedit with a heartfelt applause and me among them. A stunning surprise.The film starts by telling us the story is true, really, really trueand that adds to the already enormous surprise. A con man in the veinof Leonardo Di Caprio in "Catch Me As You Can" that deep down isoverwhelmingly honest. After years of being a wonderful father andhusband he confesses to his wife that he's gay. He remains friends andclose to his family. Ends up in jail and meets the love of his life.The love story between Jim Carrey and the astonishing Ewan McGregor isa first for the screen. Miles away from the wonderful BrokebackMountain because here their love is public without borders. I totallybelieve in the flame that both of them ignite looking into each other'seyes. It is so intimate and real that I realized I had never seen itquite like this on the screen before. The fact that this film couldn'tget a distribution is beyond me. I'm certain it's going to be one ofthe hits of 2009 and Jim Carrey as well as Ewan McGregor will get Oscarnominations. I saw the film on the 8th, 4 days ago and I've beencraving to see it again ever since. Look at McGregor's face when herealizes this man really loves him. The tenderness is nothing short ofbreathtaking. As if all of the above wasn't enough "I Love You PhillipMorris" is hysterically funny. Highly and warmly recommended.

  3. amanda-694
    30 Mar 2012, 5:11 am

    There's really only one thing you need to ask yourself before you seethis movie: are you prepared to see Jim Carrey getting it on with EwanMacGregor? If so, you should definitely go.

    The movie tells the true story—and trust me, you'll have troublebelieving it's true—of Steven Russell, a gay man who just can't stopconning his way through life. He uses his extraordinary abilities togain a variety of jobs, gets indicted for embezzlement, and wins thelove of the titular Phillip Morris while the two are fellow inmates inprison.

    "I Love You Phillip Morris" was written and directed by Glen Ficarraand John Requa, the same writing team responsible for "Bad Santa". Like"Bad Santa", this movie effectively balances humor and with some verydark themes, though I would say the overall tone is not nearly as bleakas that of the earlier movie.

    The writers told the Nashville audience that when choosing material toinclude from Steve McVicker's nonfiction book, they decided theyprimarily wanted to tell the love story. They do so very successfully.You might even call this the perfect romantic comedy for people whohate traditional romantic comedies: it's homo- rather thanhetero-oriented, it's non-fiction, and it features a somewhatoff-kilter con man as the romantic lead. Sounds bizarre, sure, and yetall these elements come together to make a really entertaining movie.

    For the most part Jim Carrey loses himself in the character of StevenRussell, delivering an effectively non-hammy (and non-Carrey) comicperformance. MacGregor's Phillip Morris is also believably innocent,Southern, and wide-eyed. Nice supporting performances, such as LeslieMann's as Russell's ex-wife Deb, round out the movie.

    Much of the romance takes place in prison, and this creates manybeautifully absurd scenes. The movie also has its fair share of sadmoments, and contains a pretty clear message about social justice inTexas — as did the book– but this is kept mercifully subtle,underlying rather than overshadowing the story.

    The directors said they hoped the movie would make spectators laugh,cry and think, and the Nashville audience seemed to do all three. Therewere a lot of laughs but some definite sniffles at the appropriatemoments. At the Q&A, there was a fair amount of interest in the realstory, and Ficarra, McVicker, and Requa were happy to oblige withfurther information.

    Come to think of it, you may not have to worry about seeing the twoleads have sex. Although the love scenes were kept technically PG, thedirectors were expecting a fight with the MPAA because of thehomosexual content. That's a real pity, but I hope they win.

  4. totalwonder from United States
    30 Mar 2012, 5:11 am

    Certain images and moments of this stunning surprise come to visit mein the middle of my day. Phillip Morris has become someone to me.Someone I crave to revisit. Jim Carrey and Ewan McGregor create, notmerely a novelty but a revolution of sorts. They took what is still ataboo and gave it a human, a truly human face. The story seems arecreation of Spielberg's "Catch me if you Can" or Robert Mulligan's"The Great Impostor" but "I love You Philip Morris" has a life all ofits own. Jim Carrey uses what made him famous to present us with aunique, true character, in all its complexities, contradictions anddepth. It is a staggering performance that will make me look at thisactor from now own under a new light and with oodles of renewedrespect. Ewan McGregor comes back to renew his early promise with acharacter of such tender honesty that I'm sure will re-open the book ofhis career with a brand new, brilliant chapter.

  5. aiga from the Baltics
    30 Mar 2012, 5:11 am

    Now, don't be alarmed! Yes, it is a movie about gay love, which mightmake some people feel uncomfortable, but please do see past that! Openyour mind and you will see that it is an amazing story about an amazingman told in the most funny and sincere manner. I mean, wow! If I wouldhave a hat, I would take it off to honor these people who have beenbrave enough and daring enough to take up this story and created suchan excellent movie. It is a some what sensitive topic. Well yeh, but inthe movie it is merely a background against which all the action takesplace.I believe that the world has grown and its views on homosexualityare not as strict as they used to be some years ago. I hope that peopleare not going to be hypocrites and, by saying that the subject ofmen-to-men love is not acceptable to them, ignore this movie.

    The movie is about a man named Steven Russell – a man who has neverfigured out who he really is and what is his place in this world. Hehas seen it all and done it all, but everything has been merely apreamble to what's coming. He meets his true love. He meets PhillipMorris. From then on he lives for this man. All he does is for the soulpurpose of making his other half happy and that is what gets him intotrouble. It happens just because there are no limits to what he woulddo for the man he loves. Also, his imagination and creativity isendless. There are not as many people who would do the same for thosewho we love.

    Though it is very funny, featuring fresh humor which is based more inthe situations than actual jokes and funny one-liners, it is just assad. It is even tragic. I guess that is the way with life: after flyinghigh there comes a low fall. Since the movie is based on actual events,there is no alternative ending. But I want to say: let's not get sad!Let's look at this movie as a celebration of life and love. It is awonderful, but in the end heart-breaking love story.

    To conclude I want to point out the outstanding performance of the twomain actors – Ewan McGregor and Jim Carrey. I don't have a large enoughvocabulary to describe how much I enjoyed it. For Carrey it is not atypical part, but he does wonders with it. I wish we would see him moreoften in movies like this (I mean smart and deep). His comedyexperience brings new quality to the drama genre. However he is a firstrate actor, who makes us laugh and cry, and that is why we love him nomatter what movie he is in. McGregor is equally good. The fact is theyboth make us believe when we watch the movie and that is the testimonyof how great they really are.

  6. Tommy Donnelly from United States
    30 Mar 2012, 5:11 am

    Just when I thought Jim Carrey couldn't surprise me anymore, even if hetried…bang! "I Love You Phillip Morris" Here Jim Carrey creates themost complex and complete character of his career. A bisexual co-man ofall things. An amoral guy who finds love and when I say "finds" we seehim finding it. The romantic entanglement of Carrey and McGregor is areal first because we, even the ones who don't quite get the same sexthing, gets it. I saw the love between this two men and I believed it."Brokeback Mountain" was easier to believe because the tragedy filledwith deceit and self loathing fit perfectly with what I, and manyothers I suspect, believe that kind of union may involve. Here I sawromance in Ewan McGregor's eyes. His disbelief that somebody loves himis out of "The Nights Of Cabiria" – I will certainly see this again.

  7. Satanus666 from United Kingdom
    30 Mar 2012, 5:11 am

    I Love You Philip Morris is a film that has a clear sense of warmth andis supported by superb performances. In terms of narrative, it is aromp, but one that takes some surprising (if not dark) turns. The filmis not lightweight and tells the story of an inveterate conman.However, the love story, that between Steven Russell (Jim Carrey) andPhilip Morris (Ewan McGregor), is touching, passionate and totallyconvincing. But while Carrey does (inevitably, one should suppose)teeter on the manic in places, it is McGregor who is the film's realrevelation.With his blond hair and softly-spoken Southern Americanaccent, McGregor easily gives one of the best performances I have seenhim offer and represents a highly credible source of Russell's desire.The romantic and sexual relationship between the two central charactersis not glossed over, and the film is all the better for it. Ultimately,I Love You Philip Morris ranks as a fine piece of drama that also worksas a comedy, albeit it a bittersweet one. All in all, if you haven'tseen it, then see it!

  8. roastmary-1 (torianrose.usa@gmail.com) from United States
    30 Mar 2012, 5:11 am

    A few months ago I put my name down for a preview of "I Love YouPhillip Morris" I RSVP with plenty of time but the day before thescreening I was called and informed that they had overbooked so I wasdropped off. Strange I thought because some people I know had RSVP'dmuch later than me and they were included in the screening. Why?Because I was born in 1940 and the other were people in their 30's. Oneof them took me has his guest and surprise, surprise I was the one wholoved the movie and has become since then a promoter of the film, somuch so that people call me, me! to ask me "Do you know when it will bereleased? I have to tell the marketing experts that they got the agething completely wrong and discrimination of this kind doesn't servethe film very well at all. Now, that out of the way, let me talk aboutthis extraordinary film. A true story no less. A con-man searching forlove and a romance like no other. Jim Carrey is superb and I bet that,if producers and distributors resolve their nonsense, he'll be a strongcontender at the Oscars 2011. He injects his character with the kind oftruth I hadn't seen before in a Jim Carrey performance. Much more thanin "Man On The Moon" or "The Truman Show" The character allows him tobe the great funny man that he is and at the same time there are layersand layers of new inedited brilliance. And if that wasn't enough, EwanMcGregor! A masterful portrayal of someone finding love in the mostunexpected man in the most unexpected place. The scene of them fallingin love has become one of my favorites. Now, you marketing people, willyou let me in next time?

  9. Tristan Housden from Australia
    30 Mar 2012, 5:11 am

    Continuing my MIFF reviews, I saw this last week with a packed house atGreater Union.

    Firstly, it has to be said that it's a tragedy that this film's generalrelease has been such a stifled process. The entertainment value ofthis picture, its expert construction and superb performances cannot bedenied.

    Carrey turns in what is possibly his best performance in a decade. It'sbizarre, the way that his signature antics actually enhance rather thandiminish the dramatic aspects of this film, based loosely on real lifeevents. In fact, for me, the movie trumps The Truman Show as Carrey'strue coming of age as a performer of depth. Ewan McGregor is equallyastonishing as Phillip Morris – you'd swear you were watching the kindof unique romantic chemistry between two actors that arrives veryrarely in cinema, and virtually never between two A-listers playing gaylovers; but the love story is only a foundation for what emerges as akinetic, superbly told comedy-drama about the real life exploits of conman and recidivist prison escapee Steven Jay Russell.

    Directors/writers Glenn Ficarra and John Requa expertly handle thetensions of comic and dramatic performance and also prove to have amasterly touch with the frenzied action sequences. Bit parts are castbeautifully. You can see the attention to detail and craft in thismovie.

    It can only be assumed that the gay context of this film has cost itit's commercial potential in the eyes of distributors, becauseeverything else about it spells box office success. Apparently, it willfinally have a limited release in the US in October this year, with thepotential of expansion.

    Without spoiling any of the twists of the film's detailed series ofevents, the film succeeds at beautifully hijacking audience expectationtime and again. Just when you think you've got the film pinned forbeing predictable, suddenly it flips on you with a wry smile as if tosay, "I knew what you were thinking".

    I'm not sure how close the producers stuck to the facts, but itscarcely matters. If 5% of this narrative is true, it would be amazingin itself. I would be happy if the film was complete fiction.

    It's a wonderful, assured comedy and deserves wide commercialexploitation.

  10. intelearts from the big screen
    30 Mar 2012, 5:11 am

    I love You Philip Morris is an exceptional film, not because of thescript, acting, or filming all of which are above average but simplybecause it seriously tries to take a homosexual relationship and showit as a heterosexual one and does so without the squirm.

    Maybe the world still ain't ready (this is most under-reviewed of anyCarey film on IMDb) but it is a good film.

    With strong elements of humor, con tricks, prison, and a heart that isgenuine, it is a very entertaining film.

    Hopefully it is a ground-breaking film. It is enjoyable , has realdepth, and you would need to be mean spirited indeed to find itrepugnant in any way.

    Go see, then complain.

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