The Private Lives of Pippa Lee

Synopsis: Pippa Lee feels dislocated when she and her husband Herb move from Manhattan to a retirement community. He's older than she, they have two children who are young adults, and the daughter hardly speaks to Pippa. Pippa tells us about her life, in long flashbacks, starting with her birth to a mom who was a social dynamo and addicted to pills. As a teen, Pippa moves out and lives a hippie life until meeting Herb, who was then married to a young siren. Pippa discloses tragedies and discoveries. In the present, she's sleepwalking at night and talking from time to time with a burned-out case, the 35-year-old son of a neighbor. Can Pippa connect?
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Romance
Director(s): Rebecca Miller
Production: Screen Media Films
  1 win & 4 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
98 min

- (laughter)

- (man) OK, alright, hold up.

Someone has to say something

nice about my friend Herb tonight,

so I'm gonna give it a shot.

I have followed Herb Lee

my whole writing career.

I followed him through three publishing

houses, and when he started his own.

It's embarrassing to need your editor

so badly, so I'm gratified to announce

that he has now followed me

to Central Connecticut. Thank you.

I didn't follow you,

I had three heart attacks.

This was a pre-emptive strike

against decrepitude.

- (laughter)

- Well, whatever brought you here

to the beautiful

Marigold Retirement Community,

I just want to say I'm glad you're here,

right down the road from my place,

and as long as Pippa

keeps making that butterflied lamb,

I'll do anything.

I'll even caddy for you.

That's fine,

as long as I don't have to play golf.

Wait, one more thing.

I just want to say something else.

I have known Pippa Lee for 25 years...

...and I think

that I will never really know her.

She is a mystery. An enigma.

Giving, caring, beautiful, intelligent,

the very icon of an artist's wife.

- What are you talking about?

- No, you are.

And who precisely is this artist

that Pippa is married to?

- (laughter)

- Exactly!

Yes, that's my point!

That's what it's come down to.

The one true artist's wife

left in the modern world,

and she ended up with a publisher.

To Herb and Pippa

and their weird new condo.

Yeah, I just, er, got three new poems.

Wonderful. If you'd ever like to show

them to somebody who's non-judgemental,

- I'd be happy to take a look at them.

- Really?

I would like that.

That would mean so much to me.

I wish Sam wouldn't keep saying

Daddy moved to be near him.

He's a satirist. Anyway, nothing's

going to put a dent in Herb's ego.

It's you I'm worried about.

It's time for dessert.

But, Herb, what is the real reason

you moved here?

Scaling down, making life more simple.

I've liquidated everything

so that when I go,

Pippa and the kids can get everything

and not give it to the government.

(Sam) I thought you loved paying taxes.

I have to admit, I actually like

this house. It's so easy.

I'm glad you feel that way, sweetie.

Though I can't help wondering

how many people have died here.

Your problem is you're too adaptable.

You're the adaptable enigma.

(Pippa) To be perfectly honest,

I've had enough of being an enigma.

I wanna be known.

Like many people,

I have lived more than one life,

so we're going to have to start

at the beginning.

- (man) Breathe. Breathe.

- (woman) Shut up!

I see the head. Come on, one good push!

(yells) Oh, f*** you!

- (baby cries)

- (man) Good girl.

My birth was marked

by several unusual occurrences.

First of all,

I was covered in fine blonde fur.

(baby cries)

- Why is she furry?

- That's nothing to worry about.

When a baby's this late,

it has time to grow vestigial hair,

from the time that we were monkeys.

I had a monkey! I had a monkey!

You can expect to have

a beautiful baby girl.

The hair is just vestigial,

as I tried to tell your wife.

I'm sorry if it offends you, Father, but

we believe that millions of years ago,

- humans were covered with fur.

- I know that.

So, is it a baby or a pet?

Suky knew my condition

had nothing to do with evolution.

It was all her fault,

because my mother had a secret,

her own little stash of sin.


- How's my pal?

- I'm OK.

Are you having a hard time

living here in Wrinkleberry?

It's strange having so much time on my

hands. This place is easy to maintain,

but there's gonna be charity work

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Rebecca Miller

Rebecca Augusta Miller, Lady Day-Lewis (born September 15, 1962) is an American independent filmmaker and novelist, known for her films Angela, Personal Velocity: Three Portraits, The Ballad of Jack and Rose, The Private Lives of Pippa Lee, and Maggie's Plan, all of which she wrote and directed. Miller is the daughter of Arthur Miller, a Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright, and his third wife Inge Morath, Magnum photographer. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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