Venus (2006)



Critic Consensus: Audiences may attend to witness Peter O'Toole's Oscar-worthy performance, but they'll also be treated to a humane, tender exploration of maturing with both dignity and irreverence.

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An aging pair of veteran English actors whose success never quite took hold finds their quiet existence suddenly interrupted by the arrival of one of the men's precocious grandnieces in director Roger Michell's affectionate comedy drama. Maurice (Peter O'Toole) and Ian (Leslie Phillips) may still land the occasional paying gig -- Maurice has recently been cast as a corpse in a popular television drama -- but for the most part, their days are spent cataloging their ailments over meals at their favorite café. Though the arrival of Ian's grandniece Jessie doesn't immediately set so well with her curmudgeonly great uncle, Maurice takes an immediate liking to the girl, and makes it a mission to expose the youngster to some of the bustling capitol's best-known sights. As the newly invigorated septuagenarian does his best to teach the wide-eyed youngster a thing or two about life, he soon comes to realize just how little he truly knows about the subject at such a late point in life.
R (for language, some sexual content and brief nudity)
Comedy , Drama , Romance
Directed By:
Written By:
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Peter O'Toole
as Maurice
Bronson Webb
as Jesse's Boyfriend
Philip Fox
as Doctor
Sam Spruell
as Hospital Director
Tim Faraday
as Policeman
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Venus

Critic Reviews for Venus

All Critics (150) | Top Critics (41)

O'Toole spent so many years being better than the little material that he was offered that it's heartening to see him sprint toward the finish of his career with such a flourish. If this is his curtain call, it's a glorious one.

February 9, 2007
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic

If only [director] Michell's film actually said something about aging, and didn't feel the need to include Grumpy Old Men shtick and bland bossa nova-inflected pop.

Full Review… | February 2, 2007
Time Out
Top Critic

Venus belongs to O'Toole. This is, hands down, my favorite performance of the year, largely because I love the way O'Toole (and the filmmakers) refuse to yield to the all-too-pervasive idea that it's 'icky' for old people to even think about sex.

Full Review… | February 2, 2007
Top Critic

The best tunes are played on the oldest fiddles, they say, and Peter O'Toole, 74, proves the point in Venus.

January 26, 2007
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic

Venus is a fine reminder of the wonders we're presented with every day.

Full Review… | January 26, 2007
Detroit News
Top Critic

Venus is emotionally affecting, not because O'Toole's Maurice is coping with mortality, but because of the honest way he confronts it.

January 26, 2007
Detroit Free Press
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Venus

A beautiful and striking meditation on aging, living and facing mortality with a superb performance by the incomparable Peter O'Toole. Exceptional performances by veteran Phillips and newcomer Whittaker. Excellent performances all around with a uniquely inspiring script. An excellent movie in every way. A film that should not be missed.

Christian C
Christian C

Super Reviewer

A touching, heartfelt drama as two old semi retired actors lives are turned upside down upon the arrival of the niece of one of them. Peter O'Toole becomes infatuated with her and has a strange friendship with her. A film with a certain charm, if a bit odd at times, but the acting talent on show steals the day.

Dean King
Dean King

Super Reviewer


Not at all what I expected, but that's a good thing since this movie had me laughing almost nonstop. Peter O'Toole had his heart broken again by just missing out on finally winning Best Actor for his role as a dirty old man who falls in love with his best friend's daughter's niece, whom he affectionately calls Venus. Maurice is a veteran actor who is somewhat rapidly dying, though you wouldn't know it from how young Jessie makes his feel. A very good movie with a lot of funny, albeit dirty dialogue.

Derek Daniels
Derek Daniels

Super Reviewer

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