World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

My Life in Ruins

My Life in Ruins
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Donald Petrie
Produced by Michelle Chydzik
Nathalie Marciano
Written by Mike Reiss
Nia Vardalos (uncredited)
Starring Nia Vardalos
Richard Dreyfuss
Alexis Georgoulis
Harland Williams
Music by David Newman
David Mullen
Cinematography José Luis Alcaine
Edited by Patrick J. Don Vito
26 Films
Distributed by Fox Searchlight Pictures
Echo Bridge Entertainment
Hollywood Entertainment
Release dates
May 7, 2009 (2009-05-07)
June 5, 2009
(United States)
Running time
95 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $17 million[1]
Box office $20,455,276[2]

My Life in Ruins (UK title: Driving Aphrodite) is a Rachel Dratch, Harland Williams and British comedy actor and impressionist Alistair McGowan. The film is about a tour guide whose life takes a personal detour, while her group gets entangled in comic situations among the ruins, with a series of unexpected stops along the way. The film was released on June 5, 2009 in the United States,[3] and May 7, 2009 in Greece.[4]


  • Synopsis 1
  • Cast 2
  • Production 3
    • Development 3.1
    • Filming 3.2
  • Release 4
    • Distribution 4.1
  • Reception 5
    • Accolades 5.1
  • References 6
  • External links 7


Georgia (

External links

  1. ^ Killer Movies, August 31, 2007. Retrieved on May 12, 2008
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^ a b Hollywood Entertainment. Retrieved on March 19, 2009
  5. ^ a b Echo Bridge Entertainment. Retrieved on May 12, 2008
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^


The film was nominated in the category of "Best Summer Romance Movie" at Fox's Teen Choice Awards 2009.[18]


...maybe they [the Greek Government] read the script and they thought, 'This is a shocker'. And it is so bad, this film... the Australian characters are unbelievable throwbacks to another era...everybody is awful. And, unfortunately, she's [Vardalos] disconcertingly like Sarah Palin, and this really threw me during the film. But it's just such a crass [film] - and all these jokes about Poupi's name. That's supposed to be funny.[17]

David Stratton, of At the Movies, gave the film 1 out of 5 stars and said:

BEWARE Greek-Canadians bearing comeback vehicles. At least if they're Nia Vardalos, who quickly disappeared from sight after improbably turning 2002's My Big Fat Greek Wedding into the most successful romantic comedy of all time. Notably thinner, less awkward and a lot less charming, Vardalos is back with "My Life in Ruins," a desperate, crass and probably futile attempt at replicating the earlier movie's fluke success. This limp souvlaki of a movie is served without any noticeable enthusiasm by director Donald Petrie (Grumpy Old Men).

Lou Lumenick, of the New York Post, also wrote on June 5, 2009:

My Life in Ruins Is Nia Vardalos' Strangely Self-Loathing Anti-Comeback: Substitute "career" for "life" in the title of this stillborn travelogue comedy, and you'll have a succinct verdict on My Big Fat Greek Wedding writer/star Nia Vardalos, whose efforts to prove herself more than a one-megahit wonder have been greeted by audiences with an apathy previously reserved for the post–Crocodile Dundee oeuvre of Paul Hogan ... the result, written by The Simpsons alum Mike Reiss and directed (in a manner of speaking) by Grumpy Old Men's Donald Petrie, is a strangely self-loathing affair that paints Vardalos's tour group as a uniformly ill-mannered, culturally illiterate bunch, while rendering Greece itself as a badly plumbed third-world hellhole run by lazy, Zorba-dancing louts.

Scott Foundas, writing in The Village Voice (June 2, 2009), agreed:

Rarely has a film centered on a character so superficial and unconvincing, [and] played with such unrelenting sameness. I didn't hate it so much as feel sorry for it ... The central question posed by "My Life in Ruins" is, what happened to the Nia Vardalos who wrote and starred in My Big Fat Greek Wedding? She was lovable, earthy, sassy, plumper, more of a mess, and the movie grossed more than $300 million. Here she's thinner, blonder, better dressed, looks younger and knows it. She's like the winner of a beauty makeover at a Hollywood studio. She has that don't touch my makeup! look ... Now she is rich, famous and perhaps taking herself seriously after being worked over for one too many magazine covers ... There is, in short, nothing I liked about "My Life in Ruins," except some of the ruins.

Critics were not so kind, as the film received just a 9% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes from 119 reviews, with the consensus: "With stereotypical characters and a shopworn plot, My Life in Ruins is a charmless romantic comedy." Roger Ebert was unequivocal, in his review of June 3, 2009:

"Given the wildly enthusiastic audience response, we are thrilled to be distributing the film. Nia's enormous box office appeal[s] along with her gift of perfect comedic timing make for a winning combination. Producers Michelle Chydzik Sowa, Nathalie Marciano, Gary Goetzman, Tom Hanks, Rita Wilson and Peter Safran have proven that films with broad audience appeal can still be made independently."

According to Fox Searchlight Pictures' President Peter Rice in the company's press release for signing a distribution deal for the film, the film gained positive feedback in early screenings:[16]


The film is distributed by Fox Searchlight Pictures[15] in the United States, Australia, and New Zealand, while it will be distributed in all other locations by Echo Bridge Entertainment.


The film was released simultaneously on DVD and Blu-ray on October 6, 2009, in the United States.[14] As of April 12, 2010 the domestic DVD sales for My Life In Ruins are $5,718,459.

The official US trailer by Fox Searchlight Pictures was released on January 7, 2009. The film premiered on June 5, 2009, and took in $3.2 million, placing it ninth of ten for American box office income in its three-day opening weekend.[9] After 17 days of its release, My Life In Ruins took in gross sales of $8,500,270 in the United States.[10] In Greece, the film grossed $1,549,303 1st in its three-day opening weekend, placing it first in sales for the weekend.[11] After a month, sales stood at $1,871,896 placing it 8th in the yearly Greek box office.[12] Canadian ticket sales for My Life In Ruins came in at $777,290.[13]


The film is set on location in Greece and Alicante, in Spain, including Guadalest and Javea. This was the first time that an American film studio was allowed to film on location at the Acropolis; the Greek government gave the studio its approval after Vardalos sought permission to film several scenes there.[6] Other Greek filming locations include Olympia, Delphi,[7] and Epidaurus.[8]


The script is originally by Mike Reiss (The Simpsons, The Simpsons Movie), based on his travel experiences, but it was later re-written by Vardalos (My Big Fat Greek Wedding) after she became involved. The film was co-produced by Gary Goetzman and Tom Hanks, and is directed by Donald Petrie. Vardalos has stated that the film was a lifelong dream of hers for she had always wanted to do a film in her family's ancestral homeland.[5]





This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.