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Monty Python's The Meaning of Life DVD 1983 / Directed by Terry Jones / Starring: Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Michael Palin

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Product Description

Monty Python's The Meaning of Life DVD 1983 / Directed by Terry Jones / Starring: Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Michael Palin

UPC 5050582224276



AUDIO: English 2.0, French mono, German mono, Italian mono

SUBTITLES: English, French, Portuguese, Danish, Finnish, Swedish, Norwegian, Dutch, German, Hungarian, Turkish, Bulgarian, Polish, Czech

Total Runtime: 103 MINUTES


English Summary:

A group of fish in a posh restaurant's tank swim together casually, until they look at the customers outside of the tank and see their friend Howard being eaten. This leads them to question the meaning of life. The question is explored in the first sketch, "The Miracle of Birth", which features a woman in labour being ignored by the doctors in favour of impressing the hospital's medically-clueless administrator. Meanwhile in Yorkshire, described as "the third world", a Roman Catholic man loses his job and returns home to tell his numerous children that he will have to sell them off for scientific experiments due to the Catholic church's opposition to contraception; this leads to the musical number "Every Sperm Is Sacred". A Protestant man with his wife looks on disapprovingly, and proudly remarks that Protestants can use contraception and have sex for pleasure (though his wife points out that they never do).

In "Growth and Learning", a class of boys are taught school etiquette before partaking in a sex education lesson, which involves watching their teacher have sex with his wife. One boy laughs, and is forced into a violent rugby match pitting pupils against the adult school masters as punishment. "Fighting Each Other" focuses on three scenes concerning the British military: first a World War I officer tries to rally his men during an attack, but they insist on presenting him with various going-away presents, including a card, cake, and a clock; second, a modern army RSM attempts to drill his platoon, but his sarcastic remarks asking what they'd "rather be doing" ends with him actually dismissing them all to pursue leisure activities. Lastly, in 1879, during the Anglo-Zulu War, a soldier finds his leg has been bitten off. Suspecting a tiger, despite being in Africa, the soldiers hunt for it and find two men suspiciously wearing two halves of a tiger costume.



  • Graham Chapman as Chairman / Fish No. 1 / Doctor / Harry Blackitt / Wymer / Hordern / General / Coles / Narrator No. 2 / Dr Livingstone / Transvestite / Eric / Guest No. 1 / Arthur Jarrett / Geoffrey / Tony Bennett-esque singer
  • John Cleese as Fish No. 2 / Dr Spencer / Humphrey Williams / Sturridge / Ainsworth / Waiter / Eric's assistant / Maître D' / Grim Reaper
  • Terry Gilliam as Window Washer / Fish No. 4 / Walters / Middle of the Film announcer / M'Lady Joeline / Mr Brown / Howard Katzenberg
  • Eric Idle as Gunther / Fish No. 3 / 'Meaning of Life' singer / Mr Moore / Mrs Blackitt / Watson / Blackitt / Atkinson / Perkins / Victim #3 / Man in Front / Mrs Hendy / Man in Pink / Noël Coward / Gaston / Angela
  • Terry Jones as Bert / Fish No. 6 / Mum / Priest / Biggs / Sergeant / Man with Bendy Arms / Mrs. Brown / Mr Creosote / Maria / Leaf Father / Fiona Portland-Smythe
  • Michael Palin as Window Washer / Harry / Fish No. 5 / Mr Pycroft / Dad / Narrator No. 1 / Chaplain / Carter / Spadger / Regimental Seargeant Major / Pakenham-Walsh / Man in Rear End / Female TV Presenter / Mr Marvin Hendy / Governor / Leaf Son / Debbie Katzenberg

The main company of Monty Python members, who appeared in multiple roles in nearly every section of the film, was supported by featured cast mates:

  • Carol Cleveland
  • Simon Jones
  • Patricia Quinn
  • Judy Loe
  • Andrew MacLachlin
  • Mark Holmes
  • Valerie Whittington


Directed by Terry Jones
Produced by John Goldstone
Written by
  • Monty Python
  • Graham Chapman
  • John Cleese
  • Terry Gilliam
  • Eric Idle
  • Terry Jones
  • Michael Palin
Music by John Du Prez
Cinematography Peter Hannan
Edited by Julian Doyle
  • Celandine Films
  • The Monty Python Membership
Distributed by Universal Pictures
Release date
  • 31 March 1983 (United States)
  • 23 June 1983 (United Kingdom)
Running time
103 minutes
Country United Kingdom
Language English




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