Being There
Being There (1979)

Hailed as a genius for his simplistic approach to life, an aging gardener with a childlike na´vetÚ rises, by accident, into the game of politics. The man is soon presented as a possible Presidential candidate although no one knows his true… More

Directed By:
Rated: PG
Running Time:
Genre: Drama, Comedy
Release Date: December 19, 1979
DVD Release Date: April 3, 2001
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Critic Score: 96% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Smart, sophisticated, and refreshingly subtle, Being There soars behind sensitive direction from Hal Ashby and a stellar Peter Sellers performance.

Ron Pennington
Hollywood Reporter

Sellers has never been better and he embellishes the detached, childlike innocence of this character with perfect style and timing. It's a deceptively simple performance, but it is essentially the core and substance of the film.

Full review…
Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader

No one seems to know what to do with the allegorical undertone of Jerzy Kosinski's script, but as a whole this 1979 film maintains a fine level of wit, sophistication, and insight.

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Simon Miraudo

Even in a chilly movie like this, deaths have resonance (whether they're on camera, or off).

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Frank Rich
TIME Magazine

Here is a comedy that valiantly defies both gravity and the latest Hollywood fashion.

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Chris Auty
Time Out

What emerges in the end is a strange ambiguity of attitude to the American political system and a hollow humour about cultural values. The cinema of cynicism, really.

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Tom Hutchinson
Radio Times

Hal Ashby's satirical parable on the way the USA surrenders itself to homespun evangelicalism gives Peter Sellers the role of a lifetime.

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Variety Staff

A highly unusual and an unusually fine film.

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Janet Maslin
New York Times

Hal Ashby directs Being There at an unruffled, elegant pace, the better to let Mr. Sellers's double-edged mannerisms make their full impression upon the audience.

People Magazine

The movie's main effect is to confirm how versatile Sellers has always been.

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More reviews for Being There

Flixster Audience Score: 92% Flixster User Reviews
Kevin M. Williams
Hal Ashby somehow manages to rein in the usual all-over-the-mapness of Peter Sellers to deliver this curious, restrained and delightful rumination on a modern… More
Adriel Lim
Innocence, subtlety and a heartful of mirth substantiate this unique movie. Here is an insight unto life and its wonderful, simple truths, despite all the… More
Dan Schultz
An inventive, imaginative, brilliant little film concerning a simple gardener (Peter Sellers) who knows nothing of the outside world, but is forced out one day… More
Tim Salmons
Another masterful performance from Peter Sellers and another wonderful film from the great Hal Ashby. Incredibly funny, insighful and captivating, Being There… More
Chris Weber
Chance has spent his entire life working as a gardener for a millionaire. He has never left the estate. never been for a ride in a car, and all he knows of the… More
Jacob Ethington
THIS is Peter Seller's best role, not necessarily his best film. He was in many funny movies, but this was more a serious comedy. I can't really say… More

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