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Monty Python's Life of Brian (1979)

tomatometer

96

Average Rating: 8.3/10
Reviews Counted: 57
Fresh: 55 | Rotten: 2

One of the more cutting=edge films of the 1970s, this religious farce from the classic comedy troupe is as poignant as it is funny and satirical.

93

Average Rating: 7.8/10
Critic Reviews: 15
Fresh: 14 | Rotten: 1

One of the more cutting=edge films of the 1970s, this religious farce from the classic comedy troupe is as poignant as it is funny and satirical.

audience

93

liked it
Average Rating: 3.9/5
User Ratings: 256,600

My Rating

Movie Info

On a midnight clear 2,000 years ago, three wise men enter a manger where a babe is wrapped in swaddling clothes. It is an infant called Brian...and the three wise men are in the wrong manger. For the rest of his life, Brian (Graham Chapman) finds himself regarded as something of a messiah -- yet he's always in the shadow of this other guy from Galilee. Brian is witness to the Sermon of the Mount, but his seat is in such a bad location that he can't hear any of it ("Blessed are the

R,

Comedy

Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones

Apr 30, 1999

$0.4M

Warner Bros. Pictures - Official Site External Icon

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All Critics (57) | Top Critics (15) | Fresh (55) | Rotten (2) | DVD (25)

I've always considered it the group's nadir; it seems toothlessly silly.

September 11, 2009 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader | Comments (10)
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Just as wacky and imaginative as their earlier film outings.

July 31, 2008 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Python successfully lampoon religious attitudes rather than religion itself.

February 9, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Bad taste of this order is rare but not yet dead.

May 9, 2005
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The Pythons are enlightened jesters, whose scorn is reserved for those who persist in walking in darkness.

August 1, 2004
New Yorker
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Funny, in that peculiar British way where jokes are told sideways, with the obvious point and then the delayed zinger.

June 18, 2004 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Comments (2)
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Only a select few of [Monty Python's] truest fans will appreciate the message they convey in a movie that actively mocks the concept of organized religion while making us laugh along with them.

February 6, 2014 Full Review Source: Cinema Crazed
Cinema Crazed

It looked back 2000 years for its comic content, but was a decade ahead in provoking Christian controversy. Yet how much hotter would the steaming Pilate of blasphemy-accusations have got if the Pythons had included their scripted mockeries of Zionism?

May 10, 2012 Full Review Source: Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)
Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)

Sandaled Python pic too irreverent for young kids.

December 31, 2010 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

It's a Mel Brooks kind of Jewish joke film made by gentiles.

October 13, 2010 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Brian contains too many hilarious bits to single out the best.

September 11, 2009 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Boys of my generation memorize the Monty Python repertoire as a buttress against the terror of losing their virginity.

April 7, 2008 Full Review Source: Film Freak Central | Comment (1)
Film Freak Central

A cheeky, irreverent parallel to the life of Jesus by the last great comedy troupe to make movies.

April 14, 2006 Full Review Source: Movie Habit
Movie Habit

Although some consider Monty Python an acquired taste, anyone with a sense of humor and an open mind should find something in this movie to enjoy.

September 30, 2005 Full Review Source: Three Movie Buffs
Three Movie Buffs

...targets...religious zealots who take Jesus' simple messages of peace and love and use them...as cries for war and persecution.

July 25, 2005 Full Review Source: www.kcactive.com

Movies just don't really come much funnier than this.

April 3, 2005
eFilmCritic.com

Freaking hilarious. 'Speak up!' I said it's freaking hilarious!

February 11, 2005
Needcoffee.com

The Pythons take satirical aim at the dangers of blind religious fervor -- which makes Brian... the perfect complement to [Mel] Gibson's blood-soaked film.

November 12, 2004 Full Review Source: Salt Lake Tribune
Salt Lake Tribune

An icon of irreverent comic brilliance.

November 11, 2004 Full Review Source: PopMatters
PopMatters

See, this is what "The Passion of the Christ" needed. More song-and-dance numbers.

July 15, 2004 Full Review
Capital Times (Madison, WI)

As far as a coherent, hilarious story line, as well as sheer blasphemous glee, you can't do much better than Life of Brian.

July 9, 2004 Full Review Source: Oregonian
Oregonian

Audience Reviews for Monty Python's Life of Brian

Life of Brian is a very funny film from Monty Python. I've seen all their films, and each are special in their own way. With this one, they really pulled off something highly entertaining and hilarious. Everyone one here brings something truly memorable to the screen, and with its plot, is a fine parody that generates lots of laughs. The film has plenty of great moments that really stand out. Monty Python are terrific comedians, and they deliver a film that is very funny from start to finish. If you loved every other film that Monty Python picture, you're sure to enjoy this one. I thought that this film was well crafted and definitely delivered on its ideas. The film is a comedy classic, and it's one of those films that any film fan should watch. Monty Python always had that eccentric touch to their humor and they pull off another great movie with Life of Brian. If you this sort of humor, you're sure to enjoy this comedy, and it is a highly memorable picture that is lots of fun due to a well written script, hilarious dialogue and top-notch performances from the troupe. Life of Brian ranks there as one of the finest comedies ever made. The humor is intelligent, hilarious and unforgettable. I think that this is one of those genre films that is much better than most comedies nowadays because this had better humor, while today's comedies tend to be pretty bland in terms of jokes. If you're looking for a film that has some very good jokes, and then check this film out, one of Monty Python's best. Life of Brian succeeds where many other comedies fail, this is a comedy classic that delivers the laughs and boasts a great story as well. Where can you go wrong?
October 28, 2013
TheDudeLebowski65
Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski

Super Reviewer

It's not just a incredible satire to the fanatic religious people, but a masterpiece of the british cinema and comedy. Life of Brian is poignant, contoversial and entertaining "biblical" comedy and, of course an obligatory film to Monty Pyhton fans and English humor.
April 21, 2012
Lucas Martins

Super Reviewer

The Life of Brian is interesting for the first half, but it falls apart as the film progressively becomes annoying to watch. It just feels so much different than the first two films, even though they try for the same type of comedy. I easily admire the attempt at great comedy, but it's just not that at all. Yes it made me laugh quite a bit, and the random scenes of animation definitely added to the atmosphere as great comedy, but I feel that there is something missing. It is the first of the series that I kind of disliked, but it's not for me, so don't go by that. I think it's because I expected more out of it, that I was kind of taken out of the atmosphere most of the time. I liked it for it's stupid characters and dialogue, but the scenes where the same joke goes on for 10 minutes just got boring. The first and second were very clever in accomplishing that, but this sort of fell flat. I wish I could say many more positive things about it, but this is exactly how I feel. I don't think I would ever take the the time to watch it again!
April 2, 2012
KJ Proulx

Super Reviewer

From the Monty Python comedy troupe comes their second film venture, and their second narrative film. Many people blatantly compare this film to Holy Grail because it was another film with a similar style, and starred Graham Chapman as the titular character. Much like Holy Grail, Life of Brian follows the path of a hero in popular lore with a twist. Both are period pieces and both emphasis the distinctions between the gender roles, maternal instincts, and of course the complexities of religion. Though both fall into the realm of absurdist humor, Grail gets so much right mostly because of its structure. While Grail is an epic journey or quest to find a holy relic, Brian is an actual plot lined story about a man with the same characteristics as Jesus in many ways and none of the same story. Many of the cast are taking on anywhere between three and ten roles, and the fact that this is a character heavy film makes that many people's presences awkward and confusing. I still found a lot of great humor within this film, and it was still absurd, loopy, and immature, just without the same grandiose feel to it that Grail cultivated with interesting character development and scenes that were irregular compared to the affluent films it was parodying. I love that Monty Python never culps to pop culture gaffs or ruins itself by being petty or nihilistic with gross out humor or downplaying to the likes of today's simpleton comedians and their disgusting films of entitlement. No matter how self indulgent these films can be, they are always classic, hilarious, and never take themselves serious enough to care what other people think. With a comedy ensemble that lasted nearly twenty some years, that's pretty special.
February 13, 2012
FrizzDrop

Super Reviewer

    1. Pontius Pilate: Wait until Biggus Dickus hears of this!
    – Submitted by Roy S (18 months ago)
    1. Mrs. Gregory: Oh! It's blessed are the meek! I'm glad they're getting something, they had a hell of a time...
    – Submitted by Hannah N (23 months ago)
    1. Brian Called Brian: Hello, Mother.
    2. Mandy: Don't you 'hello mother' me! What're all those people doing out there? C'mon, what've you been up to, my lad?
    3. Brian Called Brian: I think they must've popped by, or something.
    4. Mandy: Popped by? Swarmed by, more like! There's a multitude out there!
    – Submitted by Typhon Q (23 months ago)
    1. Person: I think it was 'Blessed are the cheesemakers.'
    2. Mrs. Gregory: What's so special about the cheesemakers?
    3. Man: Well, obviously it's not meant to be taken literally; it refers to any manufacturers of dairy products.
    – Submitted by Typhon Q (23 months ago)
    1. Centurion: Well, it's a joke sir, like Sillius Soddus or Biggus Dickus, Sir.
    2. Pontius Pilate: What's so funny about Biggus Dickus?
    3. Centurion: Well, it's a joke name, Sir.
    – Submitted by Matthew D (23 months ago)
    1. Brian Called Brian: Alright, I AM the messiah! Now, FUCK OFF!
    – Submitted by Matthew D (23 months ago)
View all quotes (20)

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Foreign Titles

  • Das Leben des Brian (DE)
  • Monty Python, la vie de Brian (FR)
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