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3.3
1,283 Ratings

Behind the Candelabra

Directed by Steven Soderbergh
United States, 2013
Drama, Biography

Synopsis

Liberace was a virtuoso pianist, outrageous entertainer and flamboyant star of stage and television. Based on the autobiographical novel, the tempestuous 6-year relationship between Liberace and his (much younger) lover, Scott Thorson, is recounted.

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Behind the Candelabra Directed by Steven Soderbergh

Awards & Festivals

Cannes Film Festival

2013 | Winner: Palm Dog

BAFTA Awards

2014 | 5 nominations including: Best Adapted Screenplay

Directors Guild of America

2014 | Winner: Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Movies for Television and Mini-Series

Screen Actors Guild Awards

2014 | Winner: Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries

2014 | Nominee: Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries

Steven Soderbergh claimed to have watched films by Rainer Werner Fassbinder as inspiration for his underrated Bubble (2005), but Behind the Candelabra... strikes me as his most Fassbinderian movie. This blackly funny (and sometimes horrific) showbiz saga, about pianist-showman Liberace's unhealthy relationship with a much-younger man, echoes numerous works by the great German filmmaker.
December 12, 2013
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This is Soderbergh at his finest. Along with feasting upon Liberace's rococo mansion, in which there's an ornate vase for every flat surface, you can appreciate the "retired" director's expert camerawork and staging, e.g., the scene in which Scott's predecessor (wearing white short-shorts) squats by the pool to warn him that he's no less expendable, shot through the soon-to-be-ousted houseboy's legs... It's easily among the best mainstream films of the decade so far.
September 06, 2013
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There are scenes, particularly during the breakup, that will be catnip for drag queens, but Soderbergh's overriding perspective is neither arch nor cruel. The camerawork, peering from doorways down empty, opulent halls, captures the paradox of palatial kitsch, its blend of liberation and claustrophobia.
June 03, 2013
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