The Best Offer

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The Best Offer
The Best Offer.jpg
Italian theatrical release poster
Directed by Giuseppe Tornatore
Produced by Isabella Cocuzza
Arturo Paglia
Written by Giuseppe Tornatore
Music by Ennio Morricone
Cinematography Fabio Zamarion
Edited by Massimo Quaglia
Paco Cinematografica
Warner Bros.
Distributed by Warner Bros.
Release dates
  • 1 January 2013 (2013-01-01)
Running time
125 minutes
Country Italy
Language English
Budget $18 million[1]
Box office $20,489,700[2][3]

The Best Offer (Italian: La migliore offerta) (entitled Deception in the UK) is a 2013 Italian romantic mystery film written and directed by Giuseppe Tornatore. The film stars Geoffrey Rush, Jim Sturgess, Sylvia Hoeks, and Donald Sutherland, and the music score is composed by Ennio Morricone.


The film tells a story of love and deceit, set in Europe (Trieste, Bolzano, Fidenza, Rome, Milan, Merano, Vienna, Prague) in the world of high-end art auctions and antiques. The story revolves around Virgil Oldman (Geoffrey Rush), an elderly and esteemed, but somewhat eccentric, managing director of an auction house. Oldman is hired by a reclusive young heiress, Claire Ibbetson (Sylvia Hoeks), to auction off the large collection of art and antiques left to her by her parents. For some reason, Claire always refuses to be seen in person. An astute young artificer, Robert (Jim Sturgess), aids Oldman in restoring and reassembling some odd mechanical parts he finds amongst Claire's belongings, while also giving him advice on how to befriend her, and how to deal with his feelings towards her. Oldman's poise and prestige is counterpointed by an ongoing scam whereby his friend Billy Whistler (Donald Sutherland) helps him to acquire a secret private collection of master paintings. Oldman eventually begins a relationship with Ibbetson, compromising his work. At the peak of the relationship, Claire overcomes her fear of the outside world and goes on to live with Virgil, who trusts the fragile Claire enough to show her his priceless collection of portraits. Virgil returns home one day to find his entire collection and Claire gone, realising that he was all part of Whistler's elaborate scam. After months of recovering from the ultimate betrayal, Virgil takes a trip to Prague, and sits in a restaurant that Claire had once suggested, waiting alone.



The film was produced by Paco Cinematografica with support from the FVG (Friuli Venezia Giulia) Film Fund. Filming began in Trieste on April 30, 2012. For Tornatore this meant a return to Trieste: it was here he shot La Sconosciuta in 2005, with Xenia Rappoport. Filming took place in a period of five to six weeks in the region of Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Vienna, Prague, and South Tyrol.[4]


Critical response[edit]

The Best Offer received mixed reviews. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds a score of 56%, with an average rating of 5.9/10, based on reviews from thirty-two critics.[5] On Metacritic, the film holds a score of 49 (out of 100), based on reviews from 17 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[6] Andrew Pulver of The Guardian rated it 2/5 stars and called it "stiff" and "convoluted".[7] Philippa Hawker of The Age rated it 3/5 stars and called it "handsome, yet austere".[8] Sandra Hall of the Brisbane Times rated it 4/5 stars and praised Geoffrey Rush's acting.[9] In a positive review, Deborah Young of The Hollywood Reporter called it "astutely written".[10] Variety called the film "superficial" and "cliched", but it predicted box office success.[1]

Box office[edit]

On the Italian opening weekend, the film grossed $2,496,402 from 373 theaters and debuted at number 2 on the box office chart, behind Mai Stati Uniti. As of 31 August 2014, it grossed $12,021,662 domestically and $8,468,038 overseas, for a worldwide gross of $20,489,700.[2][3]


Award Category Recipients and nominees Result
58th David di Donatello Awards[11] Best Film Giuseppe Tornatore Won
Best Director Giuseppe Tornatore Won
Best Script Giuseppe Tornatore Nominated
Best Producer Isabella Cocuzza and Arturo Paglia Nominated
Best Cinematography Fabio Zamarion Nominated
Best Sets and Decorations Maurizio Sabatini and Raffaella Giovannetti Won
Best Costumes Maurizio Millenotti Won
Best Makeup Luigi Rocchetti Nominated
Best Hairstyling Stefano Ceccarelli Nominated
Best Editing Massimo Quaglia Nominated
Best Sound Gilberto Martinelli Nominated
Best Score Ennio Morricone Won
Youngs' David Giuseppe Tornatore Won
67th Silver Ribbon Awards[12] Best Director Giuseppe Tornatore Won
Best Producer Isabella Cocuzza and Arturo Paglia Won
Best Screenplay Giuseppe Tornatore Nominated
Best Cinematography Fabio Zamarion Nominated
Best Scenography Maurizio Sabatini and Raffaella Giovannetti Won
Best Costumes Maurizio Millenotti Won
Best Editor Massimo Quaglia Won
Best Sound Gilberto Martinelli Nominated
Best Score Ennio Morricone Won
53rd Italian Golden Globe[13] Best Cinematography Fabio Zamarion Nominated
Best Music Ennio Morricone Nominated
26th European Film Awards Best Film Giuseppe Tornatore Nominated
Best Director Giuseppe Tornatore Nominated
Best Screenwriter Giuseppe Tornatore Nominated
Best Composer Ennio Morricone Won
People's Choice Award Giuseppe Tornatore Nominated


  1. ^ a b "Review: "The Best Offer"". Variety. 2013-01-24. Retrieved 2013-09-01. 
  2. ^ a b "La Migliore Offerta (The Best Offer)". Box Office Mojo. Archived from the original on 2013-11-02. Retrieved 2013-10-06. 
  3. ^ a b "La Migliore Offerta (The Best Offer)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2014-01-09. 
  4. ^ Scarpa, Vittoria (2012-04-05). "Tornatore shoots The Best Offer in Trieste". Retrieved 2012-11-17. 
  5. ^ "The Best Offer (La Migliore Offerta) (2013)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  6. ^ "The Best Offer". Metacritic. Retrieved January 9, 2014. 
  7. ^ Pulver, Andrew (2013-02-13). "The Best Offer – First Look Review". The Guardian. Retrieved 2013-09-01. 
  8. ^ Hawker, Philippa (2013-08-29). "The Best Offer review: Artistry in Fascination with Beauty". The Age. Retrieved 2013-09-01. 
  9. ^ Hall, Sandra (2013-08-29). "The Best Offer review: Perfect Frame to Display Rush's Talent". Retrieved 2013-09-01. 
  10. ^ Young, Deborah (2013-01-05). "The Best Offer: Film Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2013-09-01. 
  11. ^ Hombrebueno, Pierre (2013-06-15). "Giuseppe Tornatore's The Best Offer Wins Big at the Embarrassing Italian Oscars". Twitch Film. Retrieved 2013-09-01. 
  12. ^ Lyman, Eric J. (2013-07-07). "'The Best Offer' Wins Big at Italy's Nastri d'Argento Awards". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2013-09-01. 
  13. ^ "Geoffrey Rush film sweeps Silver Ribbon awards". BBC News. 2013-07-08. Retrieved 2013-09-01. 

External links[edit]