Industrial-Sized Deals Books Holiday Gift Guide Shop Men's Athletic Shoes Learn more nav_sap_plcc_6M_fly_beacon $5 Albums egg_2015 Fire TV Stick Get Ready for the Winter Gifts Under $50 Amazon Gift Card Offer minions minions minions  Amazon Echo Starting at $84.99 Kindle Black Friday Deals TheGoodDinosaur Outdoors Gift Guide on HTL
  • List Price: $9.97
  • You Save: $4.15 (42%)
& FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.
Wit has been added to your Cart
+ $3.99 shipping
Used: Very Good | Details
Sold by goHastings
Condition: Used: Very Good
Comment: 100% PRODUCT GUARANTEE!* Fast shipping on more than 1,000,000 Book , Video, Video Game, Music titles & More! We 100% Guarantee the full functionality of all used and previously viewed product, except its digital content, if any.
Sell yours for a Gift Card
We'll buy it for up to $0.69
Learn More
Trade in now
Other Sellers on Amazon
Add to Cart
& FREE Shipping on orders over $35.00. Details
Sold by: Treasure Scouts


275 customer reviews

Additional DVD options Edition Discs
New from Used from
(Jun 01, 2004)
"Please retry"
$3.71 $0.03

Best of 2015
This Year's Top Products Shop the Editors' picks at Amazon including Movies, Music, Games, and more. Learn more
$5.82 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details In Stock. Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

  • Wit
  • +
  • The Doctor
  • +
  • Something the Lord Made
Total price: $23.46
Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Wit (DVD)

Based on the 1999 Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Margaret Edson, WIT features the Academy Award winning actress Emma Thompson in a movie directed by Academy award winning director Mike Nichols. Vivian Bearing is an English professor with a biting wit that educates but also alienates her students. With her teaching and life both rigidly under control, Vivian would never let down her defenses, until the day comes when they are taken don for her. Diagnosed with a devastating illness, Vivian agrees to undergo a series of procedures that are brutal, extensive, and experimental. For eight months her life must take an uncharted course. No longer a teacher, but a subject for others to study. Vivian Bearing is about to discover a fine line between life and death that can only be walked with wit.


Deservedly hailed as one of the best films of 2001, Wit makes it clear why top-ranking talents seek refuge in the quality programming of HBO. Unhindered by box-office pressures, director Mike Nichols and Emma Thompson turn the most unglamorous topic--the physical and psychological ravages of cancer--into an exquisite contemplation of life, learning, and tenacious, richly expressed humanity. In adapting Margaret Edson's compassionate, Pulitzer Prize-winning play, Nichols and Thompson open up the one-room setting with a superb supporting cast. But their focus remains on the hospital experience of Vivian (Thompson), a fiercely demanding professor of English literature whose academic specialty--the metaphysical poetry of John Donne--is the armor she wears against the cruel indignities of her cancer treatment. While losing all that she held dear, she reassesses her life as an aloof intellectual, and Wit illuminates her bracingly eloquent and deeply moving struggle for dignity, meaning, and peace at life's ultimate crossroads. --Jeff Shannon

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Christopher Lloyd, Emma Thompson, Audra Mc Donald, Harold Pinter
  • Directors: Mike Nichols
  • Writers: Margaret Edson
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Full Screen, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: HBO Studios
  • DVD Release Date: June 1, 2004
  • Run Time: 99 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (275 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005MKKV
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,322 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Wit" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

187 of 194 people found the following review helpful By lawyeraau HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 14, 2002
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This brilliant adaptation of Margaret Edison's Pulitzer Prize winning play is simply superb. Beautifully directed by Mike Nichols, it is peppered with superlative performances by its cast. It is almost hard to believe that this profoundly moving and poignant film was released for HBO, rather than as a major box office, big screen release.

Tautly written, this remarkable film focuses on an intense and brilliant professor of English, forty-eight year old Vivian Bearing (Emma Thompson), whose academic focus has been metaphysical poetry. She has just been diagnosed by a noted oncologist, Dr. Kelikian (Christopher Lloyd), as having stage four ovarian cancer. She agrees to undergo an eight month long clinical trial to fight this illness, which at the juncture of its discovery is, invariably, terminal. This course of experimental treatment is Professor Bearing's only hope, as she realizes that there is no stage five.

As she undergoes agonizing medical procedures which, it is hoped, may save her life, Professor Bearing muses on a number of life issues in the form of droll monologues. It is these reflections on her life and her illness that drive home to the viewer her humanity, as she struggles to reconcile the abstract with reality. An aloof, spare woman, with a penchant for being a demanding and exacting teacher, Professor Bearing is now trying to hang on to her humanity and dignity, as she is reduced to being a mere lump of flesh.

Made to suffer the indignities imposed by an experimental medical treatment that is brutally aggressive and by the ravages of an illness that is relentless, Professor Bearing keeps a stiff upper lip throughout, never letting down her guard, until the end draws near.
Read more ›
8 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
88 of 94 people found the following review helpful By F. Gentile on November 21, 2002
Format: VHS Tape
I just tried to write a review of this just re-watched film, from the Pulitzer Prize winning play, and I got all tangled up. So, I'm not going to go into "the story." Just watch this brilliant, moving film about the regimented, respected but feared English professor, whose world is taken from her, when she is diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Narrated throughout by her character, the brilliant Emma Thompson takes us through her progressive deterioration and loss of control amidst the sometimes indifference of the medical profession. Audra McDonald is wonderful also as the nurse, Susie, who, though a total professional, is not only the voice of compassion, but the keeper of Thompsons "Professor Barrie's" dignity, when she can no longer defend it for herself. She is a perfect contrast to the often all to real portrayal of the fresh-faced new doctor, played by Jonathan Woodward, who effectively conveys the preoccupation with stats, data, his eagerness to "analyze", forgetting there's a human being in that bed to which the stat chart is attached. The scene near the end, where Thompson/Barrie is visited by her grand-motherly former professor, who proceeds to cradle her in her hospital bed and tenderly read a childrens story to her, and bids her good bye, is one of the most moving scenes I've ever experienced. It is not an easy film to watch. Having just lost my life-long friend, who died at 47, in hospice, it was especially poignant. But, if you watch one film, watch "Wit." It is beyond being labeled as mere entertainment, and, though the subject matter is in itself depressing, the film is not. It is one of those increasingly very, very rare films that will greatly move you.Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
43 of 44 people found the following review helpful By Cowboy Bill VINE VOICE on August 25, 2001
Format: DVD
**SPOILER ALERT ** -- I touch on the ending of this movie in my review.

Two wonderful works are highlighted in "Wit" -- one of John Donne's Holy Sonnets ("Death be not proud") and "The Runaway Bunny" by Margaret Wise Brown. "Wit"'s author, Margaret Edson, pulls these two seemingly distant texts into her script and uses them in the most amazing (witty?) way.

Donne's metaphysical sonnets are notoriously difficult and are often approached as beautifully wrought puzzles -- puzzles that are so intellectually daunting the emotion that underlies them is sometimes missed. "The Runaway Bunny," on the other hand, is probably seen by many readers as a very simple tale full of feeling but not particularly challenging. Yet Edson shows us how deep and multilayered a children's tale can be while also demonstrating the basic human feeling underneath the most cerebral of poems. The simple becomes complex; the complex, simple.

We get the most out of literature when we approach it with our full humanity engaged, ignoring neither our thoughts nor our feelings. "Wit" tells us that we get the most out of life when we approach it in the same way.

Emma Thompson's cancer-stricken English professor, Vivian Bearing, ultimately triumphs over death by surrendering to it -- and it is this Donne-ish paradox that "Wit" illustrates so well. In the end, "Wit" wisely questions the notions 1) that intellect and emotion are two separate faculties and 2) that simplicity and complexity are necessarily opposites. (One hallmark of Donne's "wit" -- a term Donne's contemporaries would've understood as creative invention -- was its examination of semantic antonyms.) "Wit" also reminds us that the infinite can be both large and small.
Read more ›
3 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews


Topic From this Discussion
possible fake? Be the first to reply
Have something you'd like to share about this product?
Start a new discussion
First post:
Prompts for sign-in

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
This item: Wit
Price: $5.82
Ships from and sold by

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Want to discover more products? Check out these pages to see more: andy shows tv, robot movies