The Muse (1999)



Critic Consensus: Despite quirky and original writing, the subject matter feels too removed to produce laughs.

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Movie Info

Actor/writer/director Albert Brooks turns his satiric gaze on the film industry in this comedy about a screenwriter who has hit a rough patch. Steven Philips (played by Brooks) has enjoyed a celebrated career in Hollywood, but one day he has a meeting with his agent, who informs him his career is suddenly going nowhere. Steven quickly finds himself at the end of his rope and is unable to put a decent sentence on paper. Desperate, he hears that there's a bona fide muse in Hollywood, Sarah (played by Sharon Stone), who might be able to help with his problems. The writer contacts Sarah, hoping a good, stong dose of inspiration will get his career back on track. However, Sarah's late hours and endless demands don't do much to help Steven's relationship with his wife (Andie MacDowell). The Muse features an original musical score by Elton John, and cameos by several notable film figures, including Martin Scorsese, Rob Reiner, and James Cameron.
PG-13 (for brief nudity)
Comedy , Drama
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:


Albert Brooks
as Steven Phillips
Sharon Stone
as Sarah Liddle
Andie MacDowell
as Laura Phillips
Jeff Bridges
as Jack Warrick
Mark Feuerstein
as Josh Martin
Steven Wright
as Stan Spielberg
Mario Opinato
as European Man
Dakin Matthews
as Dr. Jacobson
Concetta Tomei
as Nurse Rennert
Monica Mikala
as Julie Phillips
Lorenzo Lamas
as Himself
Jennifer Tilly
as Herself
James Cameron
as Himself
Jamie Alexis
as Mary Phillips
Marnie Shelton
as Jennifer
Skip O'Brien
as Universal Studio Guard
Aude Charles
as Spielberg Secretary
Ange Billman
as Spielberg Secretary No. 2
Gannon Daniels
as Spielberg Secretary No. 3
Jennie Ventriss
as Older Secretary
Bobby Ender
as Boy at Sarah's House
Stacy Travis
as Phyllis
Michele Crosby Jones
as Tiffany Saleswoman
Paul C. Jensen
as Four Seasons Porter
Steve Valentine
as Four Seasons Asst. Manager
Greg Grunberg
as Four Seasons Hotel Security
Rob Reiner
as Himself
Alexandra Kaplan
as Rob Reiner's Daughter
Steven Anthony Lawrence
as Rob Reiner's Son
Wolfgang Puck
as himself
Jill Tobin
as Female Attendant
A.J. Orta
as Boy in Cookie Store
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for The Muse

All Critics (77) | Top Critics (24)

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | April 26, 2007
New York Observer
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | June 23, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

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

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | March 22, 2002
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

December 31, 1999
New York Magazine/Vulture
Top Critic

More stupefying than entertaining.

Full Review… | December 31, 1999
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Muse


Original neurotic comedy, Albert Brooks' The Muse it's not very funny, dispite being entretaining.

Lucas Martins
Lucas Martins

Super Reviewer

Albert Brooks tale of a Hollywood writer facing the end of his career is unintentionally ironic and kinda sad to watch. The help of major Tinseltown players do little to support a work wherein Brooks himself only comes across as bitter and alienating. Sharon Stone as the titular character: blech. Only Andie MacDowell escapes unscathed. Pass.

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

I normally like Albert Brooks's films. Obviously Broadcast News and Defending Your Life are fantastic, and in those films, his neurotic, Woody Allen demeanor is charming, clever, and funny. But here he's just annoying and occasionally he's almost creepily over-bearing. As a film, The Muse has a lot of wasted time spent on people driving in the "beautiful" plasticity of L.A. and banal dialogue like "You should call him." [Dramatic pause.] "I'll call him." A film exploring the writing process might have been more interesting, but like his character, I fear Brooks has lost his edge.

Jim Hunter
Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer

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