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Blow-Up (1966)

Blowup (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Mystery, Thriller | 24 February 1967 (Brazil)
A mod London photographer finds something very suspicious in the shots he has taken of a mysterious beauty in a desolate park.

Writers:

Michelangelo Antonioni (story), Julio Cortázar (short story "Las babas del diablo") (as Julio Cortazar) | 3 more credits »
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Popularity
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Vanessa Redgrave ... Jane
Sarah Miles ... Patricia
David Hemmings ... Thomas
John Castle ... Bill
Jane Birkin ... The Blonde
Gillian Hills ... The Brunette
Peter Bowles ... Ron
Veruschka von Lehndorff ... Verushka (as Verushka)
Julian Chagrin ... Mime
Claude Chagrin Claude Chagrin ... Mime
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Storyline

A successful mod photographer in London whose world is bounded by fashion, pop music, marijuana, and easy sex, feels his life is boring and despairing. Then he meets a mysterious beauty, and also notices something frightfully suspicious on one of his photographs of her taken in a park. The fact that he may have photographed a murder does not occur to him until he studies and then blows up his negatives, uncovering details, blowing up smaller and smaller elements, and finally putting the puzzle together. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Sometimes reality is the strangest fantasy of all. See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | Italy

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 February 1967 (Brazil) See more »

Also Known As:

Blow-Up See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,800,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The character of the painter, Bill, is based on the artist Ian Stephenson. Bill's paintings are actual Stephenson paintings. In the scene where Bill shows Thomas a work in progress and says that he hasn't figured it out yet, this is a deliberate reference to what is to happen later with Thomas and his photographs. Antonioni showed Stephenson the photographic blow ups used in the film and asked him to create a similar painting in which forms became highly abstracted. See more »

Goofs

The print removed by Thomas from the darkroom ferrotype dryer is stiff and perfectly dry, however the print shown moments later in the following scene is limp and obviously still wet. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Mime: Give me your money. Do it.
See more »

Alternate Versions

This new version of the opening title music is played on the English language track of the DVD. All other tracks on the DVD including the English one with the audio commentary keep the original music. See more »

Connections

Featured in Not Fade Away (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

The Bed
Written and Performed by Herbie Hancock
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

If a tree falls in the forest....
2 January 2002 | by hold2fileSee all my reviews

BLOW-UP is NOT "about the possible dehumanizing effects of photography..." but rather a movie version of the philosophical question: "If a tree falls in the forest and no one hears it, does it make a sound?"

In this case, if a murder is committed and there is no evidence, did it really happen?

While seemingly about a successful, but hedonistically superficial, photographer who films both wartime brutalities and fashion, Thomas (David Hemmings) comes to finally realize that his images only create an illusion of the real world.

He discovers that he has accidentally photographed a murder when he develops and enlarges ("blows up") the images of photographs taken of a couple in an otherwise deserted park. He even returns to the scene and finds the victim's body. But when the photographs AND the negatives AND the body disappears AND there is no report of a missing person, he discovers that he has no evidence of a murder having occurred.

In the end, when he throws back the imaginary tennis ball to the pantomime players on the tennis court, he realizes that what he accepts as reality is really only an illusion.


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