My Last Five Girlfriends (2009) Poster

My Last Five Girlfriends (2009)

  • Rate: 5.8/10 total 1,119 votes 
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Date: 19 March 2010 (Ireland)
  • Runtime: UK:87 min
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My Last Five Girlfriends (2009)


My Last Five Girlfriends 2009tt1050002.jpg poster

  • IMDb page: My Last Five Girlfriends (2009)
  • Rate: 5.8/10 total 1,119 votes 
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Date: 19 March 2010 (Ireland)
  • Runtime: UK:87 min
  • Filming Location: London, England, UK
  • Director: Julian Kemp
  • Stars: Brendan Patricks, Naomie Harris and Kelly Adams
  • Original Music By: Andy Blythe  Marten Joustra   
  • Plot Keyword: Based On Novel | Number In Title

Writing Credits By:

    (in alphabetical order)

  • Alain de Botton  novel
  • Julian Kemp  screenplay

Known Trivia

  • The initials of Duncan’s five girlfriends – Wendy, Olive, Rhona, Natalie and Gemma – make up the word “wrong,” which is misspelled (perhaps deliberately) when placed in chronological order.

Plot: Duncan navigates the unsteady world of romance and relationships, going through five girlfriends in four years. Unfortunately, none of them turn out well. Full summary »  »

Story: After yet another failed relationship, 30-something Duncan (Brendan Patricks) decides to quiz his last five girlfriends to find out what went wrong in order to figure out how to find love. With advice from bizarre sources and intense flights of fancy, finally Duncan realises that love is a battleground where only the fittest can survive.Written by xJROCKx61  


Synopsis: The film begins with a frustrated, at-the-end-of-his-tether Englishman named Duncan writing a suicide note to his last five girlfriends: Wendy, Olive, Rhona, Natalie, and Gemma. He blames them all for ruining his outlook on life and love over the past four years and basically rendering him unable to live in a world where true, simple long-term love does not exist. With the note finished, he ingests a packet of pills and collapses. The film then goes back over the past four years…

Wendy: Duncan meets Wendy on a plane, and the two develop a relationship. Things go well, but then upon the arrival of Wendys ex-boyfriend Paul they start to drift apart. Duncan tries his best to keep it going, but finally concedes that Wendy still has feelings for Paul and he himself never really had a chance; he was probably just someone she’d taken up with until Paul came back.

Olive: Duncan finds Olive an unreadable enigma, and he is unable to find out what her exact tastes and likes are. Things come to a catastrophic end when at a dinner with Olive he ingests a chocolate pudding, finds it indigestible, vomits it all over the place and revolts her.

Rhona: Duncan’s relationship with Rhona is based on their differences, rather than their similarities: he finds her attractive in an unconventional and exotic manner. But when she buys a set of shoes that she thinks are beautiful but in Duncans opinion are awful, they ultimately have to confront their differences. Neither of them are willing to keep quiet about their feelings and tastes (the shoes, and other things), nor are they willing to compromise, so they break up.

Natalie: Duncan meets Natalie at a party and they spend the night together, beginning their relationship. Both of them hit it off well, with each partner copying the other’s mannerisms and even developing their own private language. Unfortunately’ neither of them is willing to commit to a long-term relationship, nor on Duncan’s assessment would they be able to maintain their attachment for that long.

Gemma: this is Duncans longest relationship. He met her at a party with Natalie, and developed an attraction towards her (which partly contributed to his failure with Natalie), and the two now get together well. They complement each other, they enjoy and understand each other and they have long-term plans together. Duncan deeply enjoys this relationship… till at a party he introduces Gemma to his working colleague Will. He leaves the two alone together and goes home, but later believes that he let Gemma sleep with Will. He tries to ignore his suspicions and distrust by taking Gemma to Paris, but it’s a complete debacle when she confesses to him that he was right, she DID sleep with Will. Unable to stay with Duncan after betraying him, Gemma ends the relationship.

Now out of his mind with despair and disillusionment, Duncan writes his suicide note, and swallows his pills. However, he survives his suicide attempt because he mistakenly took non-lethal tablets; he also realizes that the point of his suicide was to stress a point (how love has ruined him), which is useless since he wouldn’t even be around to see if it worked or not. He instead throws himself into his work and spends more time with his friends, and is able to make his life worth living and enjoying once again.

The film ends with Duncan swearing off women and relationships, since hes found it all too complicated and painful to be worth the effort… and then he meets his neighbor Angela.


FullCast & Crew

Produced By:

  • Michael Kelk known as producer
  • Steve O'Pray known as executive producer
  • Marion Pilowsky known as producer
  • David Willing known as producer

FullCast & Crew:

  • Brendan Patricks known as Duncan
  • Naomie Harris known as Gemma
  • Kelly Adams known as Wendy
  • Cécile Cassel known as Rhona
  • Jane March known as Olive
  • Edith Bukovics known as Natalie
  • Michael Sheen known as Burnam
  • Mark Benton known as Alan
  • Johnny Ball known as Statistics Expert
  • Michael Douglas known as Shoe afficianardo
  • Daniel Hoffmann-Gill known as Will
  • Chris Gascoyne known as Lister
  • Brendan O'Hea known as Ted
  • Steve Ryde known as Man on Bus
  • Ian Kirkby known as Tour Guide
  • Aaron Anderson known as Dinner Party Guest
  • Lee Barnett known as Agent 1
  • Ben Bishop known as Supermarket security
  • Dave Chapman known as Guppy
  • Neil Chordia known as Partygoer
  • Louis Greatorex known as Giles
  • John Line known as God
  • Eileen McPhearson known as Award Guest
  • Lawrence O'Connor known as Rochefoucauld
  • Melvin Odoom known as Agent 2
  • Sara Poyzer known as Stewardess
  • Grant Sheehan known as Plane passenger



Supporting Department

Makeup Department:
  • Toby Noar known as makeup designer




Production Companies:

  • Willing Pilowsky Productions
  • Wire Films

Other Companies:

  • Dolby Laboratories  sound mix


  • Paramount Pictures International (2010) (UK) (theatrical)
  • Paramount Pictures (2010) (Ireland) (all media)
  • Tribeca Film (2010) (USA) (all media)



Other Stuff

Visual Effects by:
  • Chris Butters known as graphics supervisor
  • Miodrag Colombo known as digital compositor
  • Daniel Cullen known as digital compositor
  • Steve Hawken known as digital compositor
  • Lionel Heath known as compositor: PPC
  • Shulamit Levin known as digital compositor
  • Dan Pearce known as digital artist
  • Andrea Pirisi known as digital colourist
  • Andrea Pirisi known as visual effects

Release Date:

  • USA 23 April 2009 (Tribeca Film Festival) (premiere)
  • UK June 2009 (Edinburgh Film Festival)
  • USA November 2009 (American Film Market)
  • Ireland 19 March 2010
  • UK 19 March 2010
  • USA 25 January 2011 (DVD premiere)
  • Mexico 8 April 2011



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. miak from United Kingdom
    30 Mar 2012, 12:35 pm

    "You'll probably wind up sitting next to the cast and crew" suggestedthe marketing blurb on the Edinburgh International Film Festivalposter; an unlikely overstatement I thought, until I went to thislittle gem of a film, and the bloke in the next seat along turned outto be the Directory of Photography. Indeed, a healthy smattering of thecast and crew pitched up for the film's second showing, and fair playto them for taking the trouble.

    I'm not really a great one for rom-coms, this was a definite wife-pickand I went in with limited expectations. However, it didn't take longfor a fairly rapid re-appraisal. The basic premise – a series of takeson why some relationships don't work out from the perspective of aslightly geeky bloke (apparently, this is grossly unfair as my wifeinforms me that he's pretty hot stuff) – is not desperately original,but the manner of its execution is both well above the average anddecidedly original.

    The film is crammed with witty and ingenious ideas – the Barbie dollvignette to summarise the 'girl on a plane' back-story is inspired, asis the Theme Park concept of a different ride for each girlfriend.Nice. The cameos are perfectly-pitched, in particular Michael Sheen andJohnny Ball, and the effervescent Vitamin C tablet fake ending wasequally well-judged. The pace is fast and there's little, if any, slackin the tight script – indeed, if I had a minor grumble, it would bethat I felt the film would have benefited from a little more time spenton character development of girlfriends 1-4.

    Effective as a comedy on a number of levels, it even managed to slot insome painful relationship truisms – the 'cereal box' effect at thestart of a relationship, yet another clever idea – that had theaudience chuckling in knowing appreciation.

    It left me wanting more, and I hope that commercial success beckons,because this film thoroughly merits it. 7/10 (which is admittedly a bitmean, and more down to me not really liking the genre).

  2. geoffgee from Sheffield, England.
    30 Mar 2012, 12:35 pm

    I had no knowledge of the novel by Alain de Botton on which this isbased, but I had previously watched several of his TV programs. While Iwas watching the film something someone was saying would occasionallyremind me of the writer's (Botton's) psychological (and philosophical)interests. There was, however, ample drama for me to be able to feelempathy for most of the characters, as well as enough unexpected plot'surprises' to maintain my desire to find out what would happen next.Visually I tended to find there was rather more use of distortinglenses in the cinematography than I am used to (or, personally,comfortable with), but having said that I can also see why their usemay be reasonably justified. Fairly understated but nonethelessenthusiastic performances from most of the actors and actresses.Definitely well worth the time spent watching.

  3. Neil Welch from United Kingdom
    30 Mar 2012, 12:35 pm

    So I'm the first one to have seen this in a cinema without any of thecast and crew being present? Well, that didn't influence my opinion!This little film crept in with no fanfare, and only the titleindicating that it perhaps belonged in romcom territory (not withoutlaughs, although it has rather more drama than comedy).

    Storywise it hold no great surprises, but the way it unfolds issomething of a triumph, displaying great originality in writing anddirection. Much of what appears on screen is an absolute delight.

    The only cast members I had heard of (apart from cameos) were NaomieHarris and Jane March, but all were good.

    But I urge you to go and see it without reading too much about it, forfear of encountering spoilers,

  4. iain-218 from Abu Dhabi
    30 Mar 2012, 12:35 pm

    I think this film may not cross water – the Americans won't get thehumour, and the Europeans will be wondering why we have to work so hardto get in to bed with each other (its why there are so many drunkBritish people in Spain, we can't do it sober).

    There are two aspects of the film which bring it to the top of the pile- the script and the cinematography. The script is not just tight andwell-timed; its storyline is a fairly accurate, almost forensic,depiction of why we keep screwing up in relationships (that's a British'we' of course). The imagery is fantastic, a clever mix ofinteresting/beautiful angles and variously styled animated sequences.

    The acting is good but not great, but perhaps that was an implicittheme within the film…very clever.

  5. jesseharsh from United States
    30 Mar 2012, 12:35 pm

    I think it would have been a great start and end if the movie wouldhave ended after he hit the floor at the beginning. Was the rest of themovie necessary? Is there anything to love? Does it exist? Love onlyexists for the social system? Saying "I love you" is a cliché? Did itcomplicate us? Do you enjoy the memory of us? The movie asked thesequestions without necessarily an answer. Do we create problems out ofnowhere, talk them into existence? There are a lot of perspectivesregarding relationships examined with the 5 relationships. If you'vebeen in a relationship or many, you'll likely relate to the scenarios.It's difficult to move on and the movie points out a lot of things wego through and the process of getting over Saeah. I'm still waiting forthat. Yeah, it's a comedy.

  6. weezebumble from Australia
    30 Mar 2012, 12:35 pm

    ** SPOILERS ** It seems that something fresh (and dare I say, 'real')is emerging in film in the past year or so. My Last Five Girlfriends isa perfect example of this phenomenon as is How To Train Your Dragon andeven (to a lesser extent) 500 Days of Summer. In my opinion, there areother films who attempt this kind of reality, but only these above havereally made a mark.

    This movie should not been assumed to be a rom-com as it is far morethan that. Its an honest look at human relationships and it bravelydances around major existential issues such as the struggle to beloved, fear of death, suicide and the meaning of life.

    The acting was great and while I imagine the budget was quite small, itdidn't show. Attention to detail is what made the difference here. Theonly quibble I have is that the end could have been a lot more powerfulas it suffered a similar fate as 500 Days of Summer. Well worth a watchas it undoubtedly prompts self-reflection.

  7. adi-cat from Romania
    30 Mar 2012, 12:35 pm

    I have to say that I decided to watch this after reading the other 4reviews on this movie. Now I wish I didn't. It failed to impress me onso many levels. A large part of the movie is narrated, which may workwell under certain circumstances and when done in the right conditionsbut for me… well, narration in a movie should have a much smallerpart to play (while introducing some scenes, or explaining a fewthings) not constitute almost one third of it.

    Moreover, I don't know if the director intended it to be this way, butthe whole emotional picture of the movie seems so bleak and sordid. Ontop of that you're never really being told why the main character isbeing dumped by all of his 5 girlfriends in a row.

    I mean, it's kind of obvious that he exhibits some type of wuss-likebehavior, at least with some of them, but you never get to really learnthe women's perspective on the matter, or see the character having anepiphany on the reasons why his sentimental life has been a completefailure so far. He doesn't seem to be capable to understand why womenrun off him and by the end of the movie he isn't any wiser on thematter then at the beginning. Perhaps a little more depressed.

    Due to that fact, the meeting with the last girl in the end of themovie, instead of shedding a ray of hope on his future love life, itkind of leaves you with the sentiment that he's probably going to screwthat up, as well.

    I have to admit, it has a few moments when it gets a little warmer andit gives you the feeling that it might get better from there on. Butthen it ultimately disappoints.

    As I said, totally unimpressive and forgettable, in my book. But that'sjust my two cents' worth.

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