• Post category:Movies
  • Post last modified:July 22, 2021

Barney’s Version


As Barney Panofsky (Paul Giamatti), the aging producer of a crappy TV show, is looking back on his life, he recalls how he stumbled into three marriages. This film version of a highly acclaimed novel may not have the advantage of author Mordecai Richler’s playful approach to literary conventions, but is nevertheless a funny and touching chronicle of a flawed, human life as lived by a man who has only a vague idea of how to find happiness and hold onto it. Giamatti is perfect in the lead and Dustin Hoffman provides a great, warm sense of humor as his dad. The director has a good command of this richly emotional story that even comes up with a nice little mystery.

2010-Canada-Italy. 134 min. Color. Produced byĀ Robert Lantos. Directed byĀ Richard J. Lewis. Screenplay: Michael Konyves. Novel: Mordecai Richler. Cast: Paul Giamatti (Barney Panofsky), Dustin Hoffman (Israel Panofsky), Rosamund Pike (Miriam Grant), Minnie Driver, Rachelle Lefevre, Bruce Greenwood.

Trivia: Hoffman’s son Jake plays his grandson. The following Canadian directors show up in cameos: Atom Egoyan, David Cronenberg, Denys Arcand and Ted Kotcheff.

Golden Globe: Best Actor (Giamatti).

Quote: “Oh Barney, you really do wear your heart on your sleeve. Now put it away, it’s disgusting to look at.” (Rachelle Lefevre to Paul Giamatti)

Last word: “My feeling about making this film is, I know that I have a tremendous amount of wealth of experience behind me. I know that I know the material, and I know what Iā€™m doing. The trepidation is to make a good film, a great piece of work, in the same way that it is every time I am on the set of a ‘CSI’ episode. The pressure seemed to be somewhat greater, because, you know, you have Dustin Hoffman, Paul Giamatti, millions of dollars behind it. But to keep the number-one show on the air is a lot of pressure too.” (Lewis, Interview Magazine)



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