Anywhere but Here (2000)



Critic Consensus: The strong chemistry between Susan Sarandon and Natalie Portman as a mother and daughter trying to make a fresh start in L.A. helps to elevate Anywhere But Here above its occasional forays into melodrama.

Movie Info

Mona Simpson's acclaimed novel comes to the screen in an adaptation directed by Wayne Wang. Tired of her life in a pleasant but unremarkable Midwestern city, where everyone knows everyone else's business, Adele August (Susan Sarandon) packs up her belongings to move to the bright lights of Beverly Hills. But her teenage daughter Ann (Natalie Portman) isn't as excited about the move; Ann has a sense of practicality that her mother lacks, and their shift in locale puts a serious strain on their … More

Rating: PG-13 (adult situations/language)
Genre: Drama, Comedy
Directed By:
Written By: Alvin Sargent
In Theaters:
On DVD: May 2, 2000
Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment - Official Site


as Adele August

as Ann August

as Josh Spritzer

as Gail Letterfine

as Jimmy

as George Franklin

as Lillian

as Girl on TV

as Hisham

as 4-Year-Old Ann

as Man with Mercedes

as Assistant Hotel Mana...

as Girl On TV

as Mrs. Rush

as Teacher

as Real Estate Agent

as Waitress

as Janice's Mother

as Bernie

as Josh's Wife

as Reverend

as Casting Assistant

as Casting Executive

as Jack's Mother

as Woman Buying Car

as Man with Luggage

as Choir Member

as Choir Member

as Choir Member

as Choir Member

as Choir Member

as Choir Member

as Choir Member

as Choir Member

as Choir Member

as Choir Member

as Choir Member

as Choir Member
Show More Cast

Friend Ratings

No Friends? Inconceivable! Log in to see what your friends have to say.


Critic Reviews for Anywhere but Here

All Critics (92) | Top Critics (26)

Portman is excellent, balancing wisdom and petulance, loyalty and imposition...

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

As a depiction of a loving-turbulent relationship between a single mom (Susan Sarandon) and her rebellious teenage daughter (Natalie Portman), Wang's meller is nicely crafted but old-fashioned like Hollywood's weepies of yesteryear.

Full Review… | January 2, 2006
Top Critic

The movie drops in on a crucial part of their lives, follows it for a few minutes and then jettisons to another episode. It's like watching 10 short stories.

Full Review… | November 6, 2002
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic

Susan Sarandon and Natalie Portman put on an acting clinic that's a treat to watch, but, no matter how accomplished, a clinic is not a movie. They do a lot with a little, yet it's far from enough.

Full Review… | March 19, 2002
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

You start wishing you were anywhere but here -- preferably at last year's far funnier Slums of Beverly Hills.

May 11, 2001
Rolling Stone
Top Critic

Solid story of independence for teens.

Full Review… | December 22, 2010
Common Sense Media

Audience Reviews for Anywhere but Here


Overlong, underdone and unfocussed despite the fantastic central performances. Full review later.

Thomas Bowler

Super Reviewer

Adele: Providence, Rhode Island? Couldn't you have gotten any farther away from me? 

"A story of a mother who knows best... and a daughter who knows better."

I like Susan Surandon and love Natalie Portman, yet I strongly dislike Anywhere But Here. It's melodrama for 2 hours and it just gets annoying. The story is that of a mother, daughter relationship. They leave Bay City, Wisconsin for Beverly Hill, California; much to chagrin of Ann(Natalie Portman). Ann is annoyed by her mother(I don't blame her), but still loves her. Adele(Susan Surandon) really annoyed me. I hated her character a lot more then I hated the movie.This movie definitely has a target audience. That target audience is any female who will cry at the slightest dramatic moment as long as it has sad music. 

I guess I can come up with a few good things about this movie. Obviously it has a good cast. It also has Danny Elfman doing the score and Roger Deakins doing the cinematography. That's about the extent of what I can say I enjoyed about it. The story is nothing new. It's pretty much just a study of a mother-daughter relationship and not a very good one at that. It probably would have helped slightly if I was a mother or a daughter.

Melvin White

Super Reviewer


A bitter and complicated mother-daughter movie. I love the moments of power each feels in making the other miserable. Natalie Portman is delightful.

Alice Shen

Super Reviewer

Anywhere but Here Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

Discussion Forum

Discuss Anywhere but Here on our Movie forum!