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I'm Not There

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Todd Haynes
Produced by Christine Vachon
John Goldwyn
Written by Todd Haynes
Oren Moverman
Starring Christian Bale
Cate Blanchett
Marcus Carl Franklin
Richard Gere
Heath Ledger
Ben Whishaw
Music by Bob Dylan
Cinematography Edward Lachman
Editing by Jay Rabinowitz
Distributed by The Weinstein Company
Paramount Pictures
Release date(s) November 21, 2007
Running time 135 min.
Country United States
Language English
Budget $20 million (est.)
Gross revenue $11,523,779

I'm Not There is a 2007 biographical/musical film directed by Todd Haynes, inspired by iconic American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan. Six actors depict different facets of Dylan's life and public persona: Christian Bale, Cate Blanchett, Marcus Carl Franklin, Richard Gere, Heath Ledger, and Ben Whishaw.[1][2] At the start of the film, a caption reads: "Inspired by the music and the many lives of Bob Dylan".[1] Besides song credits, this is the only time Dylan's name appears in the film.

The film tells its story using non-traditional narrative techniques, intercutting the storylines of the six different Dylan-inspired characters. The title of the film is taken from the 1967 Dylan Basement Tape recording, "I'm Not There", a song that had not been officially released until it appeared on the film's soundtrack album. The film received a generally favorable response, and appeared on several top ten film lists for 2007, topping the lists for The Village Voice, Entertainment Weekly, Salon and The Boston Globe.



The film opens with Jude Quinn (Cate Blanchett) (representing Dylan circa 1966)[3] walking on stage to perform at a concert, before cutting to him riding on a motorcycle and then crashing. The film then cuts to Quinn's body on a mortuary slab and an autopsy begins. (This opening sequence refers to Bob Dylan's motorcycle accident in July 1966).[4][5]

Woody Guthrie (Marcus Carl Franklin), an 11-year old African American boy, is seen carrying a guitar in a case labeled "This Machine Kills Fascists" as he travels the country, pursuing his dream of becoming a singer. (Folk singer Woody Guthrie had an identical label on his guitar.)[6] Woody befriends the African-American Arvin family, who give him food and hospitality, and Woody in turn performs Bob Dylan's 1965 song "Tombstone Blues", accompanied by Richie Havens (as Old Man Arvin). At dinner, Mrs. Arvin advises Woody: "Live your own time, child, sing about your own time".

Later that night, Woody leaves the Arvins' home, leaving behind a note thanking them, and catches a ride on a train, where a group of thieves attempt to rob him. He jumps from the speeding train and dives into a river, where a white couple rescue him and take him to a hospital, before bringing him home. They receive a phone call from a juvenile correction center in Minnesota from which Woody had escaped. The phone call prompts Woody's swift departure, and he takes a Greyhound bus to Greystone Park Hospital in New Jersey, where he visits (the real) Woody Guthrie. Woody leaves flowers at Guthrie's bedside and plays his guitar. (Over the hospital sequence, Bob Dylan performs his song "Blind Willie McTell".)

Ben Whishaw plays a young man who shares his name with the nineteenth century French poet Arthur Rimbaud. Arthur is solely seen in an interrogation room where he gives oblique answers to (unseen) questioners.

Christian Bale plays Jack Rollins, a young folk singer, whose story is framed as a documentary and told by interviewees such as fictional folk singer named Alice Fabian - described by some critics as a Joan Baez-like figure[7]—played by Julianne Moore. Rollins is praised by folk fans who refer to his songs as anthems and protest songs, whereas Jack himself calls them finger-pointing songs. When Rollins accepts the "Tom Paine Award" from a civil rights organization, a drunken Rollins insults the audience and claims that he saw something of himself in JFK's alleged assassin Lee Harvey Oswald. (Rollins's speech quotes some lines from a speech Dylan made when receiving the Tom Paine Award from the National Emergency Civil Liberties Committee in December 1963.)[8]

Christian Bale also plays Pastor John, a Born Again Christian preacher, who appears to be the Jack Rollins character several years later, having traveled to California and entered a church to engage in Bible studies. He becomes a preacher and is seen declaring his faith to his fellow church members, where he performs "Pressing On" - a song written and performed by Dylan on his 1980 gospel-influenced album Saved.

Heath Ledger plays Robbie Clark, an actor who is starring in a biopic about the life of Jack Rollins (the folk singer played by Christian Bale). This film-within-a-film is entitled Grain of Sand. (The film's title is a reference to the Dylan song "Every Grain of Sand".) We see how Robbie met his French artist wife Claire, played by Charlotte Gainsbourg, in a Greenwich Village diner and they fell in love. (The scene in which Robbie and Claire run romantically through the streets of New York re-enacts the cover of the 1963 album The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan which depicts Dylan arm in arm with his then-girlfriend Suze Rotolo walking down West 4th Street in Greenwich Village.)[9] Robbie and Claire attend the premiere of the movie, which turns out to be a disappointment for Claire and the audience. Robbie and Claire's relationship begins to unravel, as Claire glimpses Robbie touching another woman at a party and is disturbed by his misogynistic attitude in comments such as "chicks can never be poets". At the end of their marriage, Robbie and Claire argue over custody of their children and Robbie and Claire file for divorce. The result of the custody battle seems to be in Claire's favor, but Robbie leaves taking his daughters on a boat trip while archival clips show Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho signing the Paris Peace Accords. (Bob Dylan was divorced from his first wife, Sara Dylan, on June 29, 1977 and the divorce involved legal wrangling over the custody of their children.)[10] In the film, the relationship between Robbie and Claire lasts precisely as long as American involvement in the Vietnam War.

Cate Blanchett plays Jude Quinn, seen at a concert in a New England town, performing a rock version of "Maggie's Farm" to the outraged folk music fans. (Dylan performed this song at the Newport Folk Festival in 1965, which provoked booing and controversy.) Jude is seen arriving at a press conference in London and answering questions. (Some of these questions are quotes from Dylan's KQED press conference in San Francisco on December 3, 1965.)[11][12] Later, in his hotel suite, Jude is threatened by a hotel waiter brandishing a knife, who is knocked out by Jude's lover with a vase. Jude's operations in London are supervised by his manager, Norman (who bears a resemblance to Bob Dylan's 1960s manager Albert Grossman), played by Mark Camacho. In a surreal episode, Jude is seen gambolling at high speed in a park with the Beatles, following a cloud of smoke presumed to represent Dylan's introducing the band to cannabis. (The speeded-up film echoes the style of Dick Lester's direction in A Hard Day's Night). Jude is then confronted by BBC cultural reporter, Keenan Jones, played by Bruce Greenwood (The name of this character echoes Dylan's song "Ballad of a Thin Man" with its chorus: "Something is happening here/ And you don't know what it is, do you Mr. Jones?").

Jude and his entourage meet the poet Allen Ginsberg, played by American comedian David Cross, who suggests that Jude may be "selling out" to God. Keenan Jones later questions Jude about whether he cares what he sings about every night, to which Jude replies, "How can I answer that if you've got the nerve to ask me?" and walks out of the interview. (Dylan made a similar response to a reporter from Time magazine in the D. A. Pennebaker's documentary of his 1965 English tour, Don't Look Back). The Dylan song "Ballad of a Thin Man" plays as Keenan Jones moves through a surreal episode in which he appears to act out the song's lyrics.[13] Jones is seen obtaining a copy of Jude Quinn's high school year book. In concert, Jude performs "Ballad of a Thin Man", when one of his outraged fans shouts "Judas!" Jude replies "I don't believe you". (This scene re-enacts the "Judas!" shout at Dylan's Manchester concert on May 17, 1966.[4] The moment is captured on Dylan's album Live 1966.) As the fans rush the stage in an apparent attempt to attack Jude, he narrowly escapes with his band. Back in his hotel suite, Jude watches Keenan Jones on television reveal that the true identity of Jude Quinn is "Aaron Jacob Edelstein" (In October 1963, Newsweek published a hostile profile of Dylan, revealing that he was originally named Robert Zimmerman, and implying that he had lied about his middle-class origins.[14]). Jude later throws a party where his guests include Brian Jones, The Rolling Stones guitarist, and wealthy socialite and "queen of the underground" Coco Rivington, whom Jude insults. (The description of Rivington as "Andy's new bird" suggests that this character is modeled on Edie Sedgwick, a socialite and actress within Andy Warhol's circle.) As Jude's condition from drug usage worsens, he vomits in his friend's lap. Jude and Allen Ginsberg are later seen at the foot of a huge crucifix, apparently talking to Jesus. Jude shouts at the figure on the cross: "Why don't you do your early stuff?" and "How does it feel?!". After being whisked off in a car, Jude passes out on the floor while his friends stare down at him. Jude's manager, Norman observes: "I don't think he can get back on stage. He's gotten inside so many psyches - and death is just such a part of the American scene right now." Jude is last seen in his car directly addressing the viewer, "Everyone knows I'm not a folk singer".

Richard Gere portrays the outlaw Billy the Kid. Billy searches unsuccessfully for his dog, Henry, and then meets his friend, Homer. Homer tells Billy about Pat Garrett's destruction of Riddle County and the high incidence of suicide and murder. As the townspeople celebrate Halloween, a funeral takes place and a band performs Dylan's Basement Tapes song "Goin' to Acapulco" (sung by Jim James and backed by the band Calexico). Following the service, Pat Garrett (Bruce Greenwood) - who, earlier in the film played Keenan Jones, a journalist who had tried to interrogate Jude Quinn) arrives and confronts the townspeople. Billy dons a mask to disguise himself and tells Garrett to stay clear of Riddle County. Garrett then orders the authorities to arrest Billy and he is taken to the county jail. Billy escapes from the jail (with the help of Homer) and hops a ride on a train. Billy then sees his dog, Henry, one last time. Billy finds a guitar on the train that reads "This Machine kills Fascists", the same guitar that Woody Guthrie played at the beginning of the film. Billy's final words are "People are always talking about freedom, the freedom to live a certain way without being kicked around. 'Course the more you live a certain way the less it feels like freedom. Me? I can change during the course of a day. When I wake I'm one person, when I go to sleep I know for certain I'm somebody else. I don't know who I am most of the time. It's like you got yesterday, today and tomorrow all in the same room. There's no telling what can happen."[15]

The film ends with close-up footage of the real Bob Dylan playing his harmonica, a shot filmed by D. A. Pennebaker during Dylan's 1966 World Tour.


The above six characters represent different aspects of Bob Dylan's life and music.[1][7]


Todd Haynes and his producer, Christine Vachon, approached Bob Dylan's manager, Jeff Rosen, to obtain permission to use Dylan's music and to fictionalize elements of Dylan's life. Rosen suggested that Haynes should send a one page synopsis of his film for submission to Dylan. Rosen advised Haynes not to use the word 'genius'.[7] The page Haynes submitted began with a quote from Arthur Rimbaud: "I is someone else", and then continued:

If a film were to exist in which the breadth and flux of a creative life could be experienced, a film that could open up as oppose to consolidating what we think we already know walking in, it could never be within the tidy arc of a master narrative. The structure of such a film would have to be a fractured one, with numerous openings and a multitude of voices, with its prime strategy being one of refraction, not condensation. Imagine a film splintered between seven separate faces — old men, young men, women, children — each standing in for spaces in a single life.[7]

Dylan gave Haynes permission to proceed with his project. Haynes developed his screenplay with writer Oren Moverman. In the course of writing, Haynes has acknowledged that he became uncertain whether he could successfully carry off a film which deliberately confused biography with fantasy in such an extreme way. According to the account of the film that Robert Sullivan published in the New York Times: "Haynes called Jeff Rosen, Dylan’s right hand, who was watching the deal-making but staying out of the scriptwriting. Rosen, he said, told him not to worry, that it was just his own crazy version of what Dylan is."[7]

In a comment on why six actors were employed to portray different facets of Dylan's personality, Haynes wrote:

The minute you try to grab hold of Dylan, he's no longer where he was. He's like a flame: If you try to hold him in your hand you'll surely get burned. Dylan's life of change and constant disappearances and constant transformations makes you yearn to hold him, and to nail him down. And that's why his fan base is so obsessive, so desirous of finding the truth and the absolutes and the answers to him - things that Dylan will never provide and will only frustrate.... Dylan is difficult and mysterious and evasive and frustrating, and it only makes you identify with him all the more as he skirts identity.[18]

A seventh character, a Charlie Chaplin-like incarnation of Dylan, was present in the script but was dropped before filming began.[19]

Production and premiere

The production began filming in late July 2006 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

The film premiered at the 34th Telluride Film Festival on August 31, 2007. It opened in theaters in Italy and played the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2007. It opened in limited release in the United States and Canada in November, and was released in Australia on Boxing Day 2007. It was rated R by the Motion Picture Association of America for language, some sexuality, nudity and drug use.

Critical reception

I'm Not There received generally positive reviews from critics. The review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reported that 78% of critics gave the film positive reviews, based on 141 reviews.[20] Metacritic reported the film had an average score of 73 out of 100, based on 35 reviews.[21]

Writing in The Chronicle of Higher Education, critic Anthony DeCurtis said that casting six different actors, including a woman and an African-American child, to play Dylan was "a preposterous idea, the sort of self-consciously 'audacious'—or reassuringly multi-culti—gambit that, for instance, doomed the Broadway musical based on the life and music of John Lennon. Yet in I'm Not There, the strategy works brilliantly." He especially praised Blanchett:

[H]er performance is a wonder, and not simply because, as Jude Quinn, she inhabits the twitchy, amphetamine-fired Dylan of 1965-66 with unnerving accuracy. Casting a woman in this role reveals a dimension to the acerbic Dylan of this era that has rarely been noted. Even as she perfectly mimics every jitter, sneer, and caustic put-down, Blanchett's translucent skin, delicate fingers, slight build, and pleading eyes all suggest the previously invisible vulnerability and fear that fueled Dylan's lacerating anger. It's hard to imagine that any male actor, or any less-gifted female actor for that matter, could have lent such rich texture to the role."[3]

Numerous other reviewers have raved about Blanchett's performance: Newsweek magazine called the performance "so convincing and intense that you shrink back in your seat when she fixes you with her gaze."[22] The Charlotte Observer called Blanchett "miraculously close to the 1966 Dylan."[23] The film won the Grand Jury Prize and Best Actress honors for Blanchett at the 64th Venice Film Festival.[24] Blanchett also won the Golden Globe Award for her performance, in addition to several critics awards. She was nominated for a Screen Actors Guild Award and an Academy Award.

Ed Siegel's piece in the Boston Globe called the film "A noble failure in grasping Dylan," but finds Haynes' film worthy to be considered part of "the wealth of high-quality material that Dylan has allowed to emerge in recent years." His article is equally focused on Dylan, whose ambiguity has inspired a variety of interpretations, compelling Siegel to suggest his own interpretation: "I'm All Here."[25]

Todd McCarthy, film critic of trade magazine Variety, concluded that the film was well-made, but was ultimately a speciality event for Dylan fans, with little mainstream appeal. He wrote: "Dylan freaks and scholars will have the most fun with I'm Not There, and there will inevitably be innumerable dissertations on the ways Haynes has both reflected and distorted reality, mined and manipulated the biographical record and otherwise had a field day with the essentials, as well as the esoterica, of Dylan's life. All of this will serve to inflate the film's significance by ignoring its lack of more general accessibility. In the end, it's a specialists' event."[1]

Luke Davies, film critic for The Monthly, declared it "a beautiful failure of a film" with "so much to love in it" but is "unintentionally comical and inadvertently pretentious." Davies constantly referred to the film as being bitter sweet stating that there "is method in the madness" and that "even when confusing, the film is audacious". Davies labelled the film a "biopic as kaleidoscopic poem rather than historical interpretation." His criticisms aside, Davies doesn't deride Blanchett's performance stating she "is marvellous as Jude Quinn" and that she "seems to be having a ball portrating Dylan's delight at his game-playing with press and fans alike. She becomes the strong centre of the film, and the best thing about it." He perceives Blanchett's performance as an entity independent of the film, stating "her Dylan actually draws energy inwards, creating a split between the failed Haynes film, and the successful Blanchett mini-film." However, Davies says such joy is inaccessible for non-fans of Dylan saying "I'm Not There would be utterly incomprehensible if you knew nothing of the Dylan story" possibly because "it's an encyclopaedic poem of all that Bob Dylan passed through, in grand sweeps, over two decades." [26]

Top ten lists

The film appeared on many critics' top ten lists of the best films of 2007.[27]

Awards and nominations

DVD release

I'm Not There was released on DVD as a 2-disc special edition on May 6, 2008. The DVD special features include audio commentary from Haynes, deleted scenes, featurettes, a music video, audition tapes for Marcus Carl Franklin and Ben Whishaw, a gag reel, a tribute to Heath Ledger, a series of unreleased trailers featuring the six actors re-enacting the "Subterranean Homesick Blues" promo film and a Bob Dylan filmography and discography.


The film features numerous Dylan songs, both the originals and recordings by other artists, as both background music and accompaniment to the action. A notable example of a non-Dylan song is the use of The Monkees' "(I'm Not Your) Steppin' Stone" during a party scene.


  1. ^ a b c d Todd McCarthy (2009-09-04). "I'm Not There". Variety. Retrieved 2009-02-05. 
  2. ^ A. O. Scott (2007-11-07). "I'm Not There". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-02-10. 
  3. ^ a b DeCurtis, Anthony (2007-11-23). "6 Characters in Search of an Artist". The Chronicle of Higher Education. 
  4. ^ a b "Bob Dylan Timeline". BBC. Retrieved 2009-02-05. 
  5. ^ "The Bob Dylan Motorcycle-Crash Mystery". American Heritage. 2006-07-29. Retrieved 2009-02-05. 
  6. ^ Gray, 2006, The Bob Dylan Encyclopedia, pp. 287–289.
  7. ^ a b c d e Sullian, Robert (2007-10-07). "This Is Not A Bob Dylan Movie". New York Times. Retrieved 2009-02-06. 
  8. ^ Part of Dylan's speech went: "There's no black and white, left and right to me any more; there's only up and down and down is very close to the ground. And I'm trying to go up without thinking of anything trivial such as politics."; see, Shelton, No Direction Home, pp. 200–205.
  9. ^ "NYC Album Art: The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan". Gothamist. 2006-04-18. Retrieved 2009-03-01. 
  10. ^ Gray, The Bob Dylan Encyclopedia, pp. 198–200.
  11. ^ Heylin, 1996, Bob Dylan: A Life In Stolen Moments, p. 87.
  12. ^ Dylan's 1965 press conference reproduced in: Hedin (ed.), 2004, Studio A: The Bob Dylan Reader, pp. 51–58.
  13. ^ "You walk into the room/ With your pencil in your hand/ You see somebody naked / And you say: 'Who is that man?'"
  14. ^ Heylin, 2000, Bob Dylan: Behind the Shades Revisited, pp. 128–133.
  15. ^ In his 1997 interview with David Gates of Newsweek, Dylan said: "I don't think I'm tangible to myself. I mean, I think one thing today and I think another thing tomorrow. I change during the course of a day. I wake and I'm one person, and when I go to sleep I know for certain I'm somebody else. I don't know who I am most of the time. It doesn't even matter to me."Gates, David (1997-10-06). "Dylan Revisited". Newsweek. Retrieved 2008-10-13. 
  16. ^ Dylan, Chronicles, Volume One, pp. 243–246.
  17. ^ Dylan, Chronicles, Volume One, p. 146
  18. ^ "Haynes in Weinstein Company press notes for "I'm Not There", quoted in Footnote fetishism & "I'm Not There" by Jim Emerson". Jim Emerson's scanners::blog. 2007-10-10. 
  19. ^ "Dylan Director Comes Clean". Mojo. Retrieved 2008-09-07. 
  20. ^ "I'm Not There Movie Reviews, Pictures - Rotten Tomatoes". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2008-05-19. 
  21. ^ "I'm Not There (2007): Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved 2008-05-19. 
  22. ^ David Gates,"The Roles They Are A-Changin’: In Todd Haynes's film, one Dylan's not enough" from Newsweek, November 26, 2007.
  23. ^ Lawrence Toppman, "Everybody's 'There' except Bob D." from The Charlotte Observer, November 23, 2007.
  24. ^ "Blanchett wins top Venice award". BBC News Online. 8 September 2007. Retrieved 2007-09-08. 
  25. ^ "A noble failure in grasping Dylan". Boston Globe. Retrieved 2007-12-04. 
  26. ^ Luke Davies. "Let the Bird Sing, Let the Bird Fly: Todd Haynes’s ‘I’m Not There’". The Monthly. 
  27. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r "Metacritic: 2007 Film Critic Top Ten Lists". Metacritic. Retrieved 2008-01-05. 
  28. ^ Best musical Im not there
  29. ^ Travers, Peter, (December 19, 2007) "Peter Travers' Best and Worst Movies of 2007" Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2007-12-20
  • Dylan, Bob (2004). Chronicles: Volume One. Simon and Schuster. ISBN 0-7432-2815-4. 
  • Gray, Michael (2006). The Bob Dylan Encyclopedia. Continuum International. ISBN 0-8264-6933-7. 
  • Hedin, Benjamin (ed.) (2004). Studio A: The Bob Dylan Reader. W.W.Norton & Co.. ISBN 0-393-32742-6. 
  • Heylin, Clinton (1996). Bob Dylan: A Life In Stolen Moments. Book Sales. ISBN 0711956693. 
  • Heylin, Clinton (2003). Bob Dylan: Behind the Shades Revisited. Perennial Currents. ISBN 0-06-052569-X. 
  • Robert Shelton, No Direction Home, Da Capo Press, 2003 reprint of 1986 original, 576 pages. ISBN 0-306-81287-8

External links


Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

God, I'm glad I'm not me.

I'm Not There is a 2007 biographical film inspired by the life of musician Bob Dylan.

Directed by Todd Haynes. Written by Todd Haynes and Oren Moverman.
All I can do is be me. Whoever that is. taglines


Jude Quinn

  • [To a crucifix] How does it feel?
  • [Looking up at a giant Jesus on the cross] Do your early stuff!
  • How can I answer that if you got the nerve to ask me?
  • See, you just want me to say what you want me to say.
  • Yeah, I have none of those feelings.
  • God, I'm glad I'm not me.
  • Yeah, it's chaos, it's clocks, it's watermelons, it's everything.
  • Everybody knows I'm not a folk singer.

Arthur Rimbaud

You don't have to write anything down to be a poet. Some work in gas stations. Some shine shoes. I don't really call myself one because I don't like the word. Me? I'm a trapeze artist.
  • I accept chaos. I don't know whether it accepts me.
  • You know, it's nature's will. And I'm against nature. I don't dig nature at all.
  • Seven simple rules of going into hiding: one, never trust a cop in a raincoat. Two, beware of enthusiasm and of love, both are temporary and quick to sway. Three, if asked if you care about the world's problems, look deep into the eyes of he who asks, he will never ask you again. Four, never give your real name. Five, if ever asked to look at yourself, never look. Six, never do anything the person standing in front of you cannot understand. And finally seven, never create anything, it will be misinterpreted, it will chain you and follow you for the rest of your life.
  • Woody Guthrie was dead, Little Richard was becoming a preacher, so whether you're a folksinger or a Christian, rock 'n' roll was the devil. Me? I was in a ditch, up a cliff, out of step, ready to quit. I wrote the kind of stuff you write when you have no place to live and you're wrapped up in the fire pump. I nearly killed myself with pity and despair. And then I wrote it. It was like swimming in lava. Skipping, kicking, catching a nail with your foot. Seeing your victim hanging from a tree.
  • You don't have to write anything down to be a poet. Some work in gas stations. Some shine shoes. I don't really call myself one because I don't like the word. Me? I'm a trapeze artist. Sighting it and hearing it and breathing it in; rubbing it all in the pores of my skin. And the wind between my eyes, milk and honey in my comb.
  • I know I have a sickness festering somewhere. I don't mean like Woody Guthrie, wasting away in some hospital. I couldn't do that, decay like that. That's nature's will, and I'm against nature. I don't dig nature at all. The only truly natural things are dreams, which nature cannot touch with decay.

Jack Rollins

  • All they want from me is finger-pointin' songs. I only got ten fingers.
  • It's a fierce sort of feeling, thinking something is expected of you but you don't know exactly what it is. Brings forth a weird kind of guilt.

Robbie Clark

  • New York, August 7th of 1964. Congress grants President Johnson complete authority over the war while she studies painting at Cooper Union and he completes dubbing on his first major film. She tells him she's sure it will be a hit. And the cats across the roof, mad in love, scream into drainpipes. And it's I who am ready to listen. Never tired, never sad, never guilty.
  • Grain of Sand would become the underground hit of 1965 and Robbie Clark the new James Dean, Marlon Brando, and Jack Kerouac all rolled into one. But the movie disappointed her. The more they tried to make it youthful, the more the energies on screen seemed out of date. It wasn't the film they had dreamed, the film they had imagined and discussed. The film they each wanted to live.

Billy the Kid

  • People are always talking about freedom. Freedom to live a certain way, without being kicked around. 'Course, the more you live a certain way, the less it feel like freedom. Me, I can change during the course of a day. I wake and I'm one person, when I go to sleep I know for certain I'm somebody else. I don't know who I am most of the time.
  • It's like you got yesterday, today and tomorrow, all in the same room. There's no telling what can happen.


Reporter: Jude! One word for your fans?
Jude: Astronaut.

Jude: Whoa, look at all these medicines! Hey man, what are those?
Man at Party: Mandy's, make you sleep.
Jude: Sleep? I don't need sleep. Sleep is for dreamers.

Hobo: Coulda sworn you was an older man.
Woody: Well, I used to be. Much older.

President Nixon: I have asked for this radio and television time tonight for the purpose of announcing that we today have concluded an agreement to end the war and bring peace with honor in Vietnam and in southeast Asia. The following statement is being issued at this moment in Washington and Hanoi: At 12:30 Paris time today, January 23, 1973 … [trails off]
Robbie: That's when she knew it was over for good. The longest running war in television history. The war that hung like a shadow over the same nine years as her marriage. So why was it suddenly so hard to breathe?

Claire: I would like to know what is at the center of your world.
Robbie: Center of my world? Wow, you're no monkeyin' around.
Claire: Why? It's very simple, this question.
Robbie: Hm, well, I'm 22. I guess I would say me.
Claire: I suppose you are honest.
Robbie: Don't you think that you're the center or that you should be the center? Thinking with your own head, talking with your own mouth?
Claire: Yes, but there are things in the world, too, that are important.

Jude: Feeling deeply, that's what this is about? What precisely, please do tell, am I supposed to be feeling, huh?
Keenan Jones: I'm simply referring to standard emotions – pain, remorse, love.
Jude: Yeah, I have none of those feelings.

Jude: Doesn't really matter, you know, what kind of nasty names people invent for the music. But, uh, folk music is just a word, you know, that I can't use anymore. What I'm talking about is traditional music, right, which is to say it's mathematical music, it's based on hexagons. But all these songs about, you know, roses growing out of people's brains and lovers who are really geese and swans are turning into angels – I mean, you know, they're not going to die. They're not folk music songs. They're political songs. They're already dead. You'd think that these traditional music people would – would gather that mystery, you know, is a traditional fact, you know, seeing as they're all so full of mystery.
Keenan Jones: And contradictions.
Jude: Yeah, contradictions.
Keenan Jones: And chaos.
Jude: Yes, it's chaos, clocks, and watermelons – you know, it's – it's everything. These people actually think I have some kind of, uh, fantastic imagination. It gets very, uh … lonesome. But traditional music is just, uh … it's too unreal to die. It doesn't need to be protected. You know, I mean, in that music is the only true valid death you can feel today, you know, off a record player. But like everything else in great demand, people try to own it. Has to do with, like, uh, the purity thing. I think its meaninglessness is holy. Everybody knows I'm not a folk singer.


External links

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Simple English

I'm Not There
Directed by Todd Haynes
Produced by Christine Vachon
Jeff Rosen
Written by Todd Haynes
Oren Moverman
Starring Christian Bale
Cate Blanchett
Ben Whishaw
Marcus Carl Franklin
Charlotte Gainsbourg
Richard Gere
Heath Ledger
Julianne Moore
Peter Friedman
Music by Bob Dylan
Cinematography Edward Lachman
Distributed by United States:
The Weinstein Company
United Kingdom:
Paramount Pictures
Running time 135 min.
Country USA
Language English
Budget $20 million
Official website
Allmovie profile
IMDb profile

I'm Not There is a Golden Globe Award-winning and Academy Award-nominated 2007 movie that is inspired by the life of musician Bob Dylan. Dylan is played by seven different actors in the movie: Marcus Carl Franklin, Ben Whishaw, Heath Ledger, Christian Bale, Richard Gere, and Cate Blanchett, who play people like Dylan but with different names.[1]

The movie won and was nominated for several awards, including eight wins in "Best Supporting Actress" categories for Cate Blanchett, and Independent Spirit Award nomination for "Best Film".


  • Christian Bale as Jack Rollins/Pastor John
  • Cate Blanchett as Jude Quinn
  • Marcus Carl Franklin as "Woody Guthrie"
  • Richard Gere as Billy the Kid
  • Heath Ledger as Robbie Clark
  • Ben Whishaw as "Arthur Rimbaud"
  • Charlotte Gainsbourg as Claire (= Sara Dylan) and/or Suze Rotolo
  • David Cross as Allen Ginsberg
  • Bruce Greenwood as Keenan Jones/Pat Garrett
  • Julianne Moore as Alice Fabian (= Joan Baez)
  • Michelle Williams as Coco Rivington
  • Kim Gordon as Carla Hendricks
  • Alison Folland as Grace
  • Mark Camacho as Norman
  • Benz Antoine as Bobby Seale/Rabbit Brown
  • Craig Thomas as Huey Newton
  • Eugene Brotto as Peter Orlovsky
  • Richie Havens as Old Man Arvin
  • Kim Roberts as Mrs. Arvin
  • Tyrone Bensin as Mr. Arvin
  • Yolonda Ross as Angela
  • Peter Friedman as Barker/Morris Bernstein
  • Joe Cobden as Sonny
  • Kristen Hager as Mona
  • Fanny La Croix as Actress playing Alice Fabian
  • Dennis St John as Captain Henry/The Admiral
  • Kris Kristofferson as The Narrator


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