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Sideways - Paul Giamatti, Sandra Oh, Virginia Madsen, Alexander Payne

Threat advisory: High - High risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

A week before his wedding, Jack (Thomas Haden Church) and his friend Miles (Paul Giamatti), set off for a week of Californian wine tasting and golfing. That's the plan. But for this almost middle aged odd couple, the adventure is far more hazardous in the pit stops - where they meet women like Maya (Virginia Madsen) and Stephanie (Sandra Oh). The guys have very different takes on love and lust: wine buff Miles, still conflicted about his divorce of two years earlier is all trepidation, but for Jack, this is a happy go lucky last bed-hopping hurrah. The friendship is put under strain as they pull in opposite directions, and the wine, women and song routine turns into a complicated, painful dance.

Theatrical propaganda posters

Sideways image

Target demographic movie keyword propaganda

  • Film comedy drama wine wedding

Persons of interest

  • Paul Giamatti .... Miles Raymond
  • Thomas Haden Church .... Jack
  • Alex Kalognomos .... Alex Erganian
  • Sandra Oh .... Stephanie
  • Alysia Reiner .... Christine
  • Joe Marinelli .... Pourer
  • MC Gainey
  • Virginia Madsen .... Maya
  • Rex Pickett .... Author
  • Jim Taylor .... Screenwriter
  • Alexander Payne .... Screenwriter
  • Alexander Payne .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

  • Sideways official movie site
  • Sideways QuickTime movie trailers:
  • Awards and film festivals:
    • Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS - Oscars) 2005: Won: Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor); Nominated: Best Achievement in Directing (Alexander Payne), Best Motion Picture of the Year (Michael London), Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role (Thomas Haden Church), Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role (Virginia Madsen), Best Writing
    • American Cinema Editors, USA 2005: Nominated: Eddie: Best Edited Feature Film - Comedy or Musical (Kevin Tent)
    • Australian Film Critics Association Awards 2005: Nominated: Best Foreign Film - English Language (Alexander Payne - USA)
    • Boston Society of Film Critics 2004: Won: Best Cast, Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor (Thomas Haden Church), Best Screenplay (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor)
    • British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) 2004: Won: Best Screenplay - Adapted (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor)
    • Broadcast Film Critics Association Awards 2005: Won: Best Acting Ensemble (Thomas Haden Church, Paul Giamatti, Virginia Madsen, Sandra Oh), Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor (Thomas Haden Church), Best Supporting Actress (Virginia Madsen), Best Writer (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor); Nominated: Best Actor (Paul Giamatti), Best Composer (Rolfe Kent), Best Director (Alexander Payne)
    • Chicago Film Critics Association Awards 2004: Won: Best Actor (Paul Giamatti), Best Picture, Best Screenplay (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor), Best Supporting Actor (Thomas Haden Church), Best Supporting Actress (Virginia Madsen)
    • Cinematic Intelligence Agency Trenchcoat Awards 2005: Won: Funniest film; Nominated: Best script (Jim Taylor, Alexander Payne), Best film (English language)
    • Dallas-Forth Worth Film Critics Association Awards 2005: Won: Best Actor (Paul Giamatti), Best Supporting Actor (Thomas Haden Church), Best Supporting Actress (Virginia Madsen)
    • Directors Guild of America, USA 2005: Nominated: Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Motion Pictures (Alexander Payne)
    • Florida Film Critics Circle Awards 2004: Won: Best Director (Alexander Payne), Best Film, Best Screenplay (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor), Best Supporting Actor (Thomas Haden Church)
    • Gotham Awards 2004: Won: Best Film (Alexander Payne)
    • Hollywood Foreign Press Association (Golden Globes) 2004: Won: Best Screenplay (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor), Best Motion Picture - Musical Or Comedy; Nominated: Best Director (Alexander Payne), Best Performance By An Actor - Musical Or Comedy (Paul Giamatti), Best Performance By An Actress In A Supporting Role (Virginia Madsen), Best Performance By An Actor In A Supporting Role (Thomas Haden Church), Best Original Score - Motion Picture (Rolfe Kent)
    • Independent Spirit Awards 2005: Nominated: Best Director (Alexander Payne), Best Feature (Michael London), Best Male Lead (Paul Giamatti), Best Screenplay (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor), Best Supporting Female (Virginia Madsen), Best Supporting Male (Thomas Haden Church)
    • International Press Academy Golden Satellite Awards 2004: Won: Best Actor in a Supporting Role, Comedy or Musical (Thomas Haden Church), Best Ensemble, Best Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical; Nominated: Best Actor in a Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical (Paul Giamatti), Best Actress in a Supporting Role, Comedy or Musical (Virginia Madsen), Best Director (Alexander Payne) Best Screenplay, Adapted (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor)
    • Kansas City Film Critics Circle Awards 2005: Won: Best Screenplay, Adapted (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor), Best Supporting Actor (Thomas Haden Church)
    • Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards 2004: Won: Best Director (Alexander Payne), Best Picture, Best Screenplay (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor), Best Supporting Actor (Thomas Haden Church), Best Supporting Actress (Virginia Madsen)
    • National Board of Review, USA 2004: Won: Best Screenplay - Adapted (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor), Best Supporting Actor (Thomas Haden Church)
    • National Society of Film Critics Awards, USA 2005: Won: Best Screenplay (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor), Best Supporting Actor (Thomas Haden Church), Best Supporting Actress (Virginia Madsen)
    • New York Film Critics Circle Awards 2004: Won: Best Picture, Best Actor (Paul Giamatti), Best Supporting Actress (Virginia Madsen), Best Screenplay (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor)
    • New York Film Festival 2004: Closing night
    • Online Film Critics Society Awards 2005: Won: Best Actor (Paul Giamatti), Best Screenplay, Adapted (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor), Best Supporting Actor (Thomas Haden Church); Nominated: Best Director (Alexander Payne), Best Picture, Best Supporting Actress (Virginia Madsen)
    • PGA Golden Laurel Awards 2005: Nominated: Motion Picture Producer of the Year Award
    • Phoenix Film Critics Society Awards 2004: Won: Best Ensemble Acting (Thomas Haden Church, Paul Giamatti, Virginia Madsen, Sandra Oh), Best Original Score, Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role (Thomas Haden Church), Best Screenplay Adapted from Another Medium (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor)
    • San Diego Film Critics Society Awards 2004: Won: Best Screenplay, Adapted (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor)
    • San Francisco Film Critics Circle 2004: Won: Best Actor (Paul Giamatti), Best Director (Alexander Payne), Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor (Thomas Haden Church), Best Supporting Actress (Virginia Madsen)
    • São Paulo International Film Festival 2004: International perspective
    • Screen Actors Guild Awards 2005: Won: Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture (Thomas Haden Church, Paul Giamatti, Virginia Madsen, Sandra Oh); Nominated: Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role (Virginia Madsen), Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role (Paul Giamatti), Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role (Thomas Haden Church)
    • Seattle Film Critics Awards 2004: Won: Best Screenplay, Adapted (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor), Best Supporting Actor (Thomas Haden Church), Best Supporting Actress (Virginia Madsen)
    • South-eastern Film Critics Association Awards 2004: Won: Best Director (Alexander Payne), Best Picture, Best Screenplay, Adapted (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor), Best Supporting Actor (Thomas Haden Church), Best Supporting Actress (Virginia Madsen)
    • Toronto Film Critics Association Awards 2004: Won: Best Performance, Male (Paul Giamatti), Best Picture, Best Supporting Performance, Female (Virginia Madsen)
    • USC Scripter Award 2005: Nominated: (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor, Rex Pickett)
    • Writers Guild of America, USA 2005: Nominated: Best Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published (Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor)
  • Studios and distributors:

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

Oh, Sideways is a romantic comedy. Surprise!

Somehow that part slipped past me in all the general business. I went expecting a comedy with some romance thrown in but what I got was almost a romantic comedy for guys. Imagine that: a Guy Movie™ that's also a romantic comedy. Wow.

Now then, you don't have to be a wine aficionado to appreciate Sidewaysbut it would really, really help. If nothing else you need to know what "merlot" means.

*Shudders*

Paul Giamatti is a great piece of casting as the neurotic social misfit. (It's funny that so many hard-core wine drinkers seem to fit this mould.) It's a good extension of the neurotic social misfit he played in American splendour. Thomas Haden Church is The Guy, you know, the one who never grows up and gets away with it and gets all the chicks, the bastard (see also Swingers).

Take the time to see a grown-up film about loss and gain, about dread and discovery, about humanity and inhumanity. This one's a keeper.

Security censorship classification

MA 15+ (Medium level sex scenes, sexual references, medium level coarse language)

Surveillance time

127 minutes (2:07 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

Film: 26 January 2005
DVD rental: 11 May 2005
VHS rental: 11 May 2005

Cinema surveillance images

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