Margot at the Wedding

2007 film by Noah Baumbach

Margot at the Wedding is a 2007 film about Margot and her son Claude who decide to visit her sister Pauline after she announces that she is marrying less-than-impressive Malcolm. In short order, the storm the sisters create leaves behind a a mess of thrashed relationships and exposed family secrets.

Directed and written by Noah Baumbach.
One family. Infinite degrees of separation.


  • He's not ugly. He's completely unattractive.


  • What was it about Dad that had us fucking so many guys?


  • I haven't had that thing yet, where you realize that you're not the most important person in the world.
  • I have this theory. I think, historically, women have been held back in so many ways that when they get power like they do behind the wheel, they can't help but abuse it. It's akin to Hannah Arendt's Eichmann theory about prison guards and prisoners switching roles.


Malcolm: Paul apologizes for not coming. She's still getting the house ready.
Margot: I'm sorry it was such short notice.
Malcolm: I don't care. Paul's frantic, but I don't give a shit. Oh, and Ingrid wants me to tell you that she made us all bracelets.
Ingrid: No, I said we should wait.
Malcolm: I thought you asked me to tell them. Anyways, I got Knicks colors.
Ingrid: They're not Knicks colors!
Margot: It's beautiful, Ingrid.
Ingrid: Where's your dad and Josh?
Claude: They might come later.
Margot: Josh's spring break is next week, and then Jim teaches through Friday. Then he opens the house in Vermont on the weekend.
Malcolm: It means a lot to Pauline that you came.
Margot: Good.
Malcolm: [swerving to avoid a car] Holy Jesus! Watch it, dicksack! God! If you're wondering about the mustache...
Margot: No, I wasn't.
Malcolm: I had a full beard for a while, and then when I shaved it I left this part for last, you know, to see how it looked. And... it's meant to be funny.

Margot: I thought he was a musician.
Pauline: Well, music's officially a hobby. He's painting now, and writing letters to newspapers and magazines. He's very meticulous. He'll spend up to a week writing a response to a music review. He's incredibly smart. Maybe too smart, I don't know. We're doing very well.

Malcolm: I have the emotional version of whatever bad feng shui would be I don't know. You tell me. You understand this shit.
Pauline: Did you drink your teas?
Malcolm: Yeah, I drank my fucking teas.

Claude: Did she poop in her pants?
Margot: It happens to everyone, not just babies. It will happen to you too someday.

Pauline: I was dating that guy Horace back then. Do you remember him?
Margot: Was that the guy who liked to rough you up?
Pauline: No, that was our dad.
Margot: Our dad used to strip down to his skivvies and beat us with a belt.
Malcolm: That man had a sexual screw loose.
Pauline: That's awful, that stuff that happens to kids. Malcolm was fondled by a male babysitter.
Malcolm: Just use that information however you want.

Margot: You didn't notice anything different about Pauline?
Claude: No.
Margot: She's pregnant. She told me. She's keeping it a secret from Malcolm and even Ingrid, which I think is unforgivable. Now she's gonna have to marry him. What's she planning on doing, getting married and not drinking champagne? Then she's just gonna be lying. I guess she's afraid she'll miscarry. She probably will. I think on some level, she's ambivalent about the marriage. That's why she's not telling him.
Claude: Are you stoned, Mom?
Margot: Maybe a little.
Claude: I don't like it.

Margot: He's doing the interview with me in town on Friday. Did I tell you he and I are collaborating on a screenplay? An adaptation of one of Dick's novels.
Pauline: No. I didn't even know you knew he was up here.
Malcolm: [while drawing with Claude and Ingrid] Is he even a good writer? Why do people care about him?
Pauline: You're competitive with everyone. It doesn't even matter if they do the same thing as you. He's competitive with Bono.
Malcolm: It's true. I don't subscribe to the credo that there's enough room for everyone to be successful. I think there are only a few spots available, and people like Dick Koosman and Bono are taking them up. [continues drawing a picture of a man and woman having sex]
Margot: Malcolm, what would ever make you think that's something to draw right now?
Malcolm: [looks around at what Claude and Ingrid are drawing; crumples up his paper] Sorry. I wasn't thinking about it. Sorry Margot.

Pauline: Margot told Claude something I expressly told her in confidence, and he told Ingrid. I'm stunned that she put me in this position. It's so fucking infuriating!
Malcolm: Well, it's one of those things...
Pauline: Don't say anything, OK? You know what, just be there for me, silently.
Malcolm: OK.
Pauline: Why do I have to be so careful around her, but everyone is allowed to make fun of me?
Malcolm: I don't think...
Pauline: Malcolm, what did I just say? I just need you to take my side. I don't need you to make it better. Ingrid's really upset. Fuck, I can't believe she put me in this position! I didn't tell you before because I didn't want you to feel like you had to marry me. I found out right before our seminar that I'm pregnant.
Malcolm: Uh-huh.
Pauline: Well? Does that sound good to you?
Malcolm: I'm still digesting Margot telling Claude. What a fucking nutjob. Sorry. I think I'm really happy.

Malcolm: I wanna punch that guy in the nose.
Pauline: You've never hit anyone.
Malcolm: I have too!
Pauline: Who?
Malcolm: Lots of people. You don't know them. They're not around cause I punched them.
[Pauline bursts out laughing]

Margot: You know, Pauline told me she's very disappointed in you.
Claude: Why?
Margot: She thinks you laze about the house. Ingrid is always offering to help clean or cook. She made bracelets for all the guests. Even Malcolm puts up the tent. You just wait until everyone else does it for you.
Claude: That's not true.
Margot: It is true. I wish I taught you better manners...
Claude: I can try to make pop-overs. If I remember how...
Margot: Don't bother.
Claude: Why are you looking at me like that?
Margot: I just see how much you've changed. Your body language. You used to be rounder and more graceful. You're so stiff now, so blasé.
Claude: What do you mean?
Margot: I can't explain it.
[She sees the tears in his eyes]
Margot: It's okay, though.
Claude: Uh-huh.
[He stands up and starts walking away]
Margot: You're still handsome!


Wikipedia has an article about: