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Filth and Wisdom Details


After more than two decades as one of the world's most recognizable stars, Madonna steps behind the camera for the first time with this comedy drama about a handful of bohemians struggling to make a name for themselves in London, which she both wrote and directed. A.K. (Eugene Hutz) is a Ukrainian émigré and struggling musician who fronts a band blending gypsy music with punk rock. Still coming to terms with a childhood pock-marked by abuse, A.K. believes that one has to confront the seamy side of life to find enlightenment, and with this in mind he supports himself by torturing masochists for money while dressed in military gear. Living in the same decaying apartment block as A.K. is Holly (Holly Weston), a gifted dancer who dreams of becoming a ballet star, though now she's forced to degrade herself as a stripper at a "gentleman's nightclub." A.K. is enamored of Holly, but can't work up the nerve to make a move. Elsewhere in the building, Juliette (Vicky McClure) wants to help children in the Third World, but is biding her time working at a pharmacy, where she swipes medicine for charity when she isn't pocketing recreational material for herself, and Professor Flynn (Richard E. Grant) is a blind poet who is surrounded by a personal library of books he can no longer read. Filth and Wisdom also features several performances by Gogol Bordello, the band Eugene Hutz leads in real life; the film received its world premiere at the 2008 Berlin Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

  • Release date:October 17, 2008


Eugene Hutz
as A.K.
Holly Weston
as Holly
Vicky McClure
as Juliette
Richard E. Grant
as Professor Flynn
Inder Manocha
as Sardeep
Elliot Levey
as Business Man
Francesca Kingdon
as Francine
Clare Wilkie
as Chloe
Stephen Graham
as Harry Beechman
Shobu Kapoor
as Sardeep's Wife
Olegar Fedorov
as A.K.'s Father


Nicola Doring
Dan Cadan
Tim Maurice-Jones
Russell Icke
Gideon Ponte
Production Designer
Max Bellhouse
Art Director
Executive Producer
Costume Designer
Jill Nichols
Set Decorator
Simon Hayes
Sound/Sound Designer
Andrew Mannion
First Assistant Director
Dan Hubbard