[[quoteright:300:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/withnail_6969.gif]]
[[caption-width-right:300:"We've gone on holiday by mistake!"]]

->'''Withnail''': ''[after drinking an ounce of lighter fluid]'' Have we got any more?\\
''[Marwood shakes his head]''\\
'''Withnail''': Liar. What's in your toolbox?\\
'''Marwood''': No, we have nothing. Sit down.\\
'''Withnail''': Liar! You've got anti-freeze!\\
'''Marwood''': Bloody fool! You should never mix your drinks!\\
''[Withnail pauses, laughs hysterically, then falls over and vomits on Marwood's boots]''
-->--''The title characters pretty much set the tone for the whole movie''

Made in 1987, ''Withnail & I'' is a semi-autobiographical classic black comedy set in the end weeks of 1969. It's written and directed by Bruce Robinson, who lived it. The film stars Creator/RichardEGrant as Withnail, a messed-up, flamboyant alcoholic, and Creator/PaulMcGann as Marwood (or "I", since he's never named in the actual film), his slightly more gentle and sensible friend. Both are perpetually unemployed (and in Withnail's case, almost entirely unemployable) actors living in squalor, who decide to get away from it all with a holiday in the countryside. They do so by way of borrowing a cottage belonging to Withnail's -- equally flamboyant -- gay Uncle Monty.

Trouble is, everything goes wrong; they're totally incapable of looking after themselves, rendering the -- in itself rather cosy -- cottage a cold, dark, borderline inhospitable shack. They can't find any food, they throw their money away on booze, it won't stop pouring, the locals are surly and unwelcoming, a local poacher takes exception to Withnail and promises violent retribution. And as if that wasn't enough, Uncle Monty makes a surprise appearance, with amorous intentions towards Marwood.

The film is famous for its hilarious lines, as well as for having one of the saddest endings in comedy film history. It's gained cult status (besides an evergreen popularity among university students, often people who see it will quote it whole) and is considered an important part of British film culture. Equally (in)famous are Robinson's mistreatment by Creator/HandmadeFilms during production, and the film's ''intense'' amounts of HoYay and Paul [=McGann=] FanService.

The script is also notable as being a work of art just as much as the film is, and Robinson's descriptions outside of the dialogue have to be seen to be believed.
----
!!This film provides examples of:

* AbhorrentAdmirer: Monty's amorous intentions towards Marwood are entirely unwanted on Marwood's part.
* {{Adorkable}}: Both of them have their moments. Marwood gets his adorableness from Paul [=McGann=] being, well, Paul [=McGann=], while Richard E. Grant breaking character to giggle in the cafe scene helped humanize Withnail.
* TheAlcoholic: Both protagonists are booze-addled layabouts, although Withnail's the one who stoops so low as to drink lighter fluid.
* TheAllegedCar: The beaten-up Mark 2 Jaguar. One functioning headlight, one functioning windscreen wiper... on the passenger side. Not what you want for a drive around [[UsefulNotes/BritishWeather the Lake District]].
* AllThereInTheManual:
** The screenplay is as much a work of art as the movie is. From the stage directions for the opening sequence:
---> ''Dostoyevsky described hell as perhaps nothing more than a room with a chair in it. This room has several chairs. A young man sits in one.''
** Marwood's name and age (25) are only given in the screenplay.
* AmbiguouslyGay: Withnail admits to being carried away lying that Marwood was in love with him, but then he looks he's going to cry when he says "man delights not me, no, nor women neither" at the end. Paul [=McGann=] claims that Creator/RichardEGrant actually did have tears in his eyes during the [[spoiler: goodbye scene]]. There's also plenty of HoYay going on between him and Marwood, and his family apparently hate his stage career, which could have less to do with wanting him to take a more reputable career and more to do with the association between "inversion" and actors in the U.K at the time. He's also strangely chummy with Monty, who's implied to be the black sheep of the family, which would suggest something of an understanding between them.
* AteHisGun: Withnail's fate in the original - unfilmed - ending.
* AudienceSurrogate: Bruce Robinson used this trope so literally that Marwood doesn't even get a ''name'', allowing the audience to more easily identify with his misfortunes.
* AuthorAvatar: Marwood is a stand-in for Bruce Robinson.
* BadassBoast: Withnail is incredibly skilled at giving these.
-->There's nothing invented I couldn't take.
* BathOfPoverty: The duo talk casually, while Marwood is bathing and attempting to shave in a tiny, stained and cracked bathtub in the middle of the floor. In addition to being a horrible and nonfunctional piece of bathroom furniture, it establishes that they don't even own a bathroom.
* BathroomStallGraffiti: Marwood sees some graffiti in a bathroom stall which reads, "I fuck arses", This, combined with his encounter with a man who called him a ponce, causes him to be so scared that, as his voiceover tells us, he can't even pee straight.
* BathtubScene: Marwood has an extended scene where he shaves while taking a bath.
* BeautyIsNeverTarnished: Discussed and averted when Monty is reminiscing about a dalliance he had as a young man.
-->'''Monty''': I sometimes wonder where Norman is now. Probably wintering with his mother in Guildford. A cat, rain, Vim under the sink, and both bars on. But old now, old. There can be no true beauty without decay.
* BilingualBonus: While Monty, Withnail and Marwood are playing cards, Monty and Withnail have a brief conversation in Latin about Marwood "Needing a Queen to come to the rescue", which also [[FridgeBrilliance shows off the characters' upper class education]].
* BlackComedyRape: Well, ''attempted'' rape.
-->'''Monty:''' I mean to have you, even if it must be burglary!
* BlackSheep: Withnail curries no favours with his family, who disdain his choice of profession (and his frankly appalling lifestyle).
-->'''Withnail''': I dislike relatives in general and in particular mine.
-->'''Marwood''': Why?
-->'''Withnail''': I've told you why. We're incompatible. They don't like me being on stage.
* BlatantLies: "[[DrunkDriver I asshure you I'm not officer. I've only had a few ales.]]"
* BreadEggsMilkSquick: Withnail announces that he needs a small child so he can tutor them into the ways of righteousness. [[ItMakesSenseInContext And procure some uncontaminated urine.]]
* BreakTheHaughty: For all Withnail's high opinion of himself and his talents, in the end he is forced to face the fact that he'll never make it big.
* BromanticComedy: Creator/RogerEbert once described the film as 'a Bromance going horribly wrong'.
* ButtMonkey: Marwood can't catch a break, and his instinctive response to bad luck is to grin nervously. He starts to complain after a while that he can't drink coffee because he's got a grinning cramp.
* ByronicHero: Withnail. Artistic, tormented, misunderstood by society.
* CampGay: Uncle Monty. Withnail might also count, although his orientation is somewhat hazy.
* ChromosomeCasting: Withnail, Marwood and Monty (and, at a push, Withnail's dealer Danny) are the only characters of any significance in the film. Moreover, most of the characters of lesser significance are male too.
* CityMouse: The duo are completely unsuited to country life, as they soon find out.
* CitySlicker: Inverted. Withnail and Marwood keep insisting "we're not from London!" to everyone they meet in the country because they're afraid of getting shafted.
* CloudCuckooLander: Danny.
-->I don't advise a hair cut man. All hairdressers are in the employment of the government. Hair are your aerials. They pick up signals from the cosmos and transmit them directly into the brain. This is the reason bold-headed men are uptight.
* CloudCuckooLandersMinder: A large chunk of Marwood's life involves getting himself and Withnail out of whatever trouble the latter's landed them in.
* ClusterFBomb: The entire film is one, effectively, with swear words ranging from the above to CountryMatters to right around again.
* ContemplatingYourHands: Marwood: "My thumbs have gone weird! I'm in the middle of a fucking overdose!"
* CoolCar: Monty's custom 1953 Rolls Royce. (Definitely not Marwood's Mark 2 Jaguar; see TheAllegedCar.)
* CountryMatters: One of Withnail's most famous lines.
* {{Corpsing}}: Richard E. Grant failed to stop snorting during the Penrith Tearooms scene, when talking about the jukeboxes. At the end of the film, Paul [=McGann=] can't suppress a chuckle in his voice when he tells Withnail to "stop laughing".
* CreatorCameo: Bruce Robinson appears as the barman in the London pub. Also, he is the postman who brings the telegram to Crow Crag, and possibly the poacher the boys see in the distance.
* DeadpanSnarker: Marwood has his moments:
--> '''Marwood:''' You never discuss your family, do you?
--> '''Withnail:''' I told you, we're incompatible. They don't like me being on stage.
--> '''Marwood:''' Then they must be ''delighted'' with your career...
--> '''Withnail:''' Why do you say that?
--> '''Marwood:''' You so rarely are.
* DeathGlare: Marwood's preferred method of dealing with Withnail's bouts of pigheadedness; one can assume he's had a lot of time to practice.
* DeerInTheHeadlights: Marwood is unable to move for a few ''very long'' seconds when he realizes that Monty has come to his room.
* DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment: A man drives up to the cottage in a tractor with the logs Marwood asked for for firewood. Withnail asks him if he's the farmer... twice.
--> '''Marwood:''' Stop saying that, Withnail! Of course he's the fucking farmer!
* DespairSpeech: Withnail mournfully recites a passage from ''Literature/{{Hamlet}}'' at the end of the film upon parting ways with his only friend and realizing his ambitions will never come to fruition.
* DirtyCoward: Withnail much more than Marwood.
** When he sees the size of the drunken Irishman who called Marwood "perfumed ponce", Withnail backpedals so furiously he almost falls over the bar:
--->'''Withnail''' I don't know what my fr... ''acquaintance'' did to upset you but I can assure you it's nothing to do with me. I suggest you both go outside and discuss it sensibly in the street...
** Withnail causes Marwood's encounter with a ''randy bull'' by forgetting to shut the gate to its field, then he jumps over the wall to let him deal with it.
* DoesNotLikeShoes: Danny walks around barefoot, in keeping with his general hippie vibe.
* DoggedNiceGuy: Marwood wants to be this, but he carelessly goes along with Withnail's asshole behaviour and substance abuse.
* DoomedProtagonist: The movie ends with Withnail alone, in complete and utter despair, still unemployed, and on the brink of getting evicted. It's not a question of ''whether'' his self-destructive lifestyle will kill him, but a question of ''when''. (Withnail's real-life counterpart, the little-known actor Vivian [=MacKerrell=], never found success in life and died fairly young of throat cancer.)
* DoubleStandardRapeMaleOnMale: Played for laughs, though for very {{Squick}}y ones. It's certainly supposed to be hilarious when Marwood gets out of the situation by telling Monty that Withnail is his lover, and that he couldn't stand the thought of being made to be unfaithful to him. Also, his reaction to the "I fuck arses" [[BathroomStallGraffiti graffiti]] plays with this trope.
-->'''Uncle Monty:''' I mean to have you [[CrowningMomentOfFunny even if it must be burglary!]]
* DownerEnding: Only the wolves know what a good actor Withnail can really be. At our last look of him, he seems in complete and utter despair. The original intended ending had Withnail [[DrivenToSuicide committing suicide]] by drinking wine from a gun barrel, then pulling the trigger.
* DramaQueen: Both Withnail and Uncle Monty.
* DramaticThunder: Right before the telegram comes, signifying that their friendship is coming to an end.
* DrivesLikeCrazy: Withnail, which isn't surprising since he doesn't have a driving licence. When a groggy Marwood wakes up in the back seat of the Jaguar to find a drunk Withnail at the wheel flying round the M25[[note]] Anachronistically so; construction on the M25 began six years after the film is set.[[/note]] and chaotically weaving in and out of early morning traffic, Withnail simply explains, "I'm making time."
* DumbassHasAPoint: When Withnail observes that he and Marwood are on a downward spiral, Marwood even says (in voiceover), "Even a stopped clock is right twice a day."
* EndOfAnAge:
** In rare moment of lucidity by Danny. He states all the thoughts and ideas of TheSixties have become little more than commercialised junk for the grim [[TheSeventies Seventies.]]
** Also Marwood and Withnail's friendship is coming to end with Marwood pursuing an acting job.
* EruditeStoner: Danny the drug dealer. Although his "wisdom" is actually pretty vapid compared to the main characters' much more down-to-earth problems, and it's even indicated that his drugs are at least somewhat to blame for their career problems.
-->'''Danny:''' Politics, man. If you're hanging onto a rising balloon, you're presented with a difficult decision -- let go before it's too late or hang on and keep getting higher, posing the question: how long can you keep a grip on the rope?
* EverybodySmokes
* ExpositoryHairstyleChange: At the end of the film, Marwood gets rid of his wild curls and becomes noticeably more clean-cut and less bohemian in appearance, to signify [[spoiler:his improved circumstances and the severing of ties with Withnail]]. On a more mundane level, it's because he's been cast as the lead in the play ''Theatre/JourneysEnd'', which is set in the UsefulNotes/WorldWarI trenches, and all of the leading characters of which are British Army officers, so he has to look the part.
* ExtremelyShortTimespan: WordOfGod from Bruce Robinson says the film takes place over two or three weeks, with the bulk of the action happening during a single weekend.
* EyeTake: "Congratulations..." We see the precise moment when Withnail and Marwood's friendship ends for good.
* FanDisservice: Kind of hard to enjoy the all-but-naked hot twentysomething when he's trying to avoid being taken advantage of by a man approximately twice his size.
* FauxlosophicNarration: Marwood's writings frequently take on a philosophical bent.
-->'''Marwood:''' ''(voiceover)'' Even a stopped clock gives the right time twice a day. And for once I'm inclined to believe that Withnail is right. We are indeed drifting into the arena of the unwell.
* FishOutOfWater: Both of them are totally at sea in the countryside.
* {{Foil}}: Withnail and Marwood, to each other. Marwood seems reasonable mostly in comparison to how reasonable Withnail isn't. And Withnail's strangeness and fecklessness is more apparent with Marwood to react to him and compare him with.
* {{Foreshadowing}}: When they first meet with Monty, he remarks that he gave up his acting career when he came to the same conclusion many ultimately unsuccessful aspiring actors reach: "I will never play the Dane," referring to the title character in ''Theatre/{{Hamlet}}''. Withnail says he intends to play "The Dane" one day. At the end of the film, he mournfully recites a passage from the play, having apparently also come to the sad conclusion that he will never play the role on stage.
* FourTemperamentEnsemble:
** Sanguine: Uncle Monty
** Choleric: Withnail
** Melancholic: Marwood
** Phlegmatic: Danny
* FriendshipMoment: Doubly subverted when they're going back home. Marwood is panicking and sleep-deprived while driving and Withnail just cackles. But then he wakes up in the backseat disorientated to find Withnail has taken over and is "[[DrivesLikeCrazy making time]]".
* FunnyBackgroundEvent: Marwood's expression whenever Withnail is making grandiose claims about his success as a film and theatre star.
* GiftedlyBad:
** Withnail believes he's a great actor [[note]]and he ''is''... but only we and the wolves know that[[/note]] and genuinely has no idea why he has been out of work for so long:
--->'''Withnail:''' Bastards! You'll all suffer! I'll show the lot of you! I'm gonna be a STAAAAAAAAAAARRRRR!
** By contrast Marwood has a much higher talent-to-ego ratio. While Withnail indulges in melodramatic bragging, Marwood quietly auditions for a small part in a play... and [[spoiler: gets offered the lead]].
* GratuitousFrench: Monty peppers his speech with French words and quotes.
* GrayRainOfDepression: The bleak final scene is made even bleaker by the cold, heavy rain.
* GreasySpoon: Marwood finds himself in a particularly gritty and British one near the start of the film. In the script it is referred to as "Wanker's Cafe."
* GutturalGrowler: Presuming Ed
* TheHedonist: One of the qualities at the core of Withnail's personality.
-->'''Monty''': You're incapable of indulging in anything but pleasure, am I not right?
* HeterosexualLifePartners: As Paul [=McGann=] said, it's like a "marriage going wrong". But as he's also noted, the "heterosexual" part definitely doesn't apply to Withnail, and maybe not to Marwood either.
* IHaveAFamily: In a last, desperate attempt by Withnail to avoid a beating after he had run afoul of an Irishman, he says, "My wife's having a baby".
* INeedAFreakingDrink: Withnail's response to virtually any situation is to get absolutely sloshed.
* ImportantHaircut: [[spoiler:Marwood]], in the final scene.
* ImmuneToDrugs: According to [[Wiki/{{Wikipedia}} the Other Wiki]], Withnail is shown drinking roughly nine and a half glasses of red wine, half a pint of cider, one shot of ''lighter fluid'' [emphasis added]..., two and a half shots of gin, six glasses of sherry, thirteen glasses of whisky and half a pint of ale" throughout the movie. And he also does pot. There's a supposed DrinkingGame where the player drinks everything Withnail drinks when he drinks it, with something else substituted for the lighter fluid. It's unlikely that anyone who has even attempted the game has actually completed it. In an earlier scene, he is offered a drug whose street name is "The Embalmer." His response? "Balls. I'll [[BadassBoast swallow it and run a mile]]."
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold:
** For most of the movie, Withnail's all too willing to throw Marwood to the wolves for personal gain, but his attempt to "make time" when driving to London is a genuine show of friendship on his part. And when Marwood gets a big role, he manages to muster up a teary-smiled "congratulations", although he's almost certainly very displeased about it. He does show some concern for Marwood after basically betraying him to his uncle, and tries to get him to stay.
** Jake the poacher probably counts as this, since after his argument with Withnail he does end up bringing them a hare to eat.
* KindheartedCatLover: Inverted with Monty: he's clearly not to be trusted, since he despises his own pet cat.
* KnowNothingKnowItAll:
** "A coward you are, Withnail. An expert on bulls you are not."
** Withnail's general approach to any situation is to try and bluff his way out of it, which backfires on him spectacularly a few times throughout the film, most memorably in the scene with the police:
--->'''Withnail''': Look here, my cousin's a Q.C—\\
'''Officer''': GETINTHEBACKOFTHEVAN!!
* LargeHam:
** Richard E. Grant isn't one but his character, Withnail, certainly is. All the world is a stage for him, and while we never see him on an actual stage we get to see him overact in his everyday life:
--->'''Withnail:''' I'm a ''trained actor'' REDUCED to the status of a bum!
** Uncle Monty is quite hammy as well. Presumably it's a family trait.
* LastNameBasis: Everyone calls Withnail by his last name.
* LastNoteNightmare: [[{{Leitmotif}} Withnail's Theme]] is bouncy and dramatic in a very sad way, but it ends on a thumping flat note. Considering who it's for, it's very fitting, and, considering the original ending, in which [[spoiler: he takes a final drink before blowing his brains out]], FridgeHorror.
* LaughingMad: A very high Withnail can't stop cackling when Danny screws him over and nicks all his post (which means he'll be getting evicted) and arrogantly says that law rather appeals to him. Marwood ends up laughing along, probably due to the drugs.
* LennonSpecs: Marwood dons a pair en route to the cottage.
* {{Luvvies}}: Withnail. Posh, pompous, boastful and eccentric - basically every stereotype associated with British theatre actors rolled into one person.
* MenCantKeepHouse: Their London flat is squalid, and the kitchen is almost a biological hazard. They're scared to clean out the sink because they're pretty sure something is ''alive'' in there, and when they do brave it, they find some sort of grey, mushy matter.
* MessyHair: Withnail sports a mane of uncombed, uncut and oftentimes unwashed hair.
* MistakenForGay: Happens to Marwood constantly: "Perfumed ponce!", "So you're a [[FreudianSlip thesbian]] too?", "You want workin' on, boy..."
* MockMillionaire: "We want the finest wines available to humanity. We want them here and we want them now!" [[BlatantLies "We are not drunks, we're multi-millionaires"]]. One of the least convincing examples of this trope.
* MoodWhiplash: A film that's almost unrelentingly hilarious detailing two self-destructive people in the death spiral of their friendship is bound to be full of moments like this.
* MotorMouth: GETINTHEBACKOFTHEVAN!!
* MostWritersAreWriters: Marwood keeps a journal filled with various thoughts on his and Withnail's situation in life, which provides the narration.
* MrFanservice:
** If you're not a hard-drinking British university student, it's quite likely you watched it primarily for Marwood's shirtless scenes, even when he's nearly getting raped. Paul [=McGann=] spends a good third of his scenes in only his underwear.
** This was the film that turned Richard E. Grant into a sex symbol.
* NameAndName
* NearRapeExperience: Uncle Monty is about to force himself on Marwood, before he lies and claims to be in a secret relationship with Withnail, which causes Monty to have a sudden attack of conscience.
* NoCelebritiesWereHarmed: Monty is a thinly-veiled Creator/FrancoZeffirelli, albeit fat and not Italian. According to some people involved with the film, some of his dialogue in the bedroom scene is taken word-for-word from some of Zeffirelli's chat-up lines, which the director had to endure while playing Benvolio in his film version of ''Theatre/RomeoAndJuliet''.
* NoNameGiven: Credited as "...& I", Marwood is named only in the screenplay. We shall never know Withnail's first name, on the other hand, leaving one to think it's something poncey like 'Sheridan'. However, [[https://twitter.com/RichardEGrant/status/315141534741831680/photo/1 this tweet]] from Richard E Grant would suggest it is 'Vyvian', which would make sense considering the person on whom the character is based, and the ponce-level of the name. There's [[{{Fanon}} a belief among fans]] that Marwood's first name is "Peter", thanks to a misheard line of dialogue in the movie that is not supported by the script. Although, during [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l5fL71C9b0o this interview]] Paul [=McGann=] ''does'' more or less confirm this.
* NoPronunciationGuide: For the uninitiated, it's "WITH-null".
* NoSenseOfPersonalSpace: Even when he's annoyed at Withnail, Marwood is supremely touchy-feely with him.
* {{Oireland}}: The Irishman (who's given no other name) is a thoroughly unpleasant man who tries to start a fight with our protagonists because he's offended that Marwood put perfume on his shoes (to keep them from stinking from Withnail's vomit). Then again, he's a northerner, so his nationality might be in question—but since it's an I.R.A pub going by the graffiti outside, he's probably Irish.
* OnlyOneName: Withnail.
* OnlySaneMan: Marwood, certainly when compared to Withnail, Monty and Danny. He's not immune to indulging his vices and isn't exactly much better equipped to survive in the country than Withnail is, but overall he's far more reasonable, calm and blessed with more common sense.
* OopNorth: Much of the film takes place in the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lake_district Lake District]], a mountainous region near the Scottish border on the west cost of Britain. The locals appear to be slightly dismissive of "London types" from down south.
--> '''Withnail:''' Listen, we're bona fide! [[BlatantLies We're not from London]]. Could we have some fuel and wood?
* PassiveAggressiveKombat: Marwood's very skilled at the art of diplomatic putdowns.
* PoliticallyIncorrectHero: Marwood is racist ("There's a giant spade in the bath") and homophobic - a real product of the 1960's.
* PerpetualPoverty: Withnail is even worse-off than Marwood, who at least has enough money on him to loan it to Withnail when needed. This is despite his very posh background, which gives a suggestion of him having been disowned due to his attempt at an acting career.
* ThePigPen: The Camden flat is dingy and squalid - the kitchen area, in particular, is an absolute atrocity.
* PoisonousFriend: Withnail embodies the trope with absolute relish: he's all but dragging Marwood down with him in his spiral of alcoholism and drug addiction.
* PrettyBoy: The two leads look like they've have been battered and malnourished for far too long, but still… Marwood has the same looks he later had for the Eighth Doctor and Withnail is pouty-mouthed, has big blue eyes and his hair goes fluffy when they hit the countryside. The battered factor even adds to the appeal.
* RaisedCatholic: Marwood wears a medallion of the Virgin around his neck.
* RandomEventsPlot: The plot of the film is effectively that two out-of-work actors go on holiday and things happen to them, eventually resulting in [[spoiler: their parting]]
* RedOniBlueOni: Withnail is the energetic, impulsive red to Marwood's cool and reflective blue.
* {{Retraux}}: The film's low-key style makes it look much more like something made in 1969 than 1987, to the extent that some viewers [[NewerThanTheyThink think it really is a film]] from TheSixties.
* RevisedEnding: The ending would originally have had Withnail [[AteHisGun putting a gun in his mouth and pulling the trigger]]. It was changed to be not so completely depressing.
* SeriousBusiness: The dishes. As any Troper who has flatted can attest, this is very much TruthInTelevision.
* ShirtlessScene: The movie is extremely dedicated to showing Paul [=McGann=] in various states of undress every few minutes.
* SmallNameBigEgo: Withnail believes himself to be a great actor despite having done virtually no work in the field. His final scene, however, in which he delivers a word-perfect Hamlet soliloquy with spot-on characterisation and emotion, may prove him right.
* SmartPeopleKnowLatin: Withnail and Monty engage in some prep-school Latin badinage at the less highly educated Marwood's expense.
* SoBeautifulItsACurse: Poor Marwood garners unwanted attentions from Uncle Monty thanks to his extraordinary good looks..
* SophisticatedAsHell: Withnail constantly evokes both UpperClassTwit and SirSwearsalot in the same breath.
* SorryOciffer: The "GETINTHEBACKOFTHEVAN!" scene: Withnail is sloshed throughout and trying to maintain his very much imperilled dignity.
* SpeechImpediment: In common with a good many Londoners, Danny has rhotacism, an inability to pronounce the letter 'r'. In his case it's extreme and sometimes extends to the letter 'l'.
-->'''Danny''': The joint I am about to woll wequires a cwaftsman, and can utilise up to twewve skins. It is cawwed a Camberweww Cawwot.
-->'''Marwood''': It's impossible to use twelve papers on one joint.
-->'''Danny''': It's impossibwe to make a Camberweww Cawwot with anything less.
* StarvingArtist: The protagonists are out-of-work actors with barely a penny to their name.
* StonerFlick: More of a drinker flick than anything. As noted elsewhere, the only thing more notorious than the rules of the popular drinking game (match Withnail and Marwood drink for drink over the course of the film) is the fact that attempting to play the drinking game will land you in the hospital with alcohol poisoning. However, due to the film's popularity with students, many people try: generally, they fall asleep at the glass of whiskey around the half-way mark.
* StraightMan: Marwood plays a pitch-perfect straight man to Withnail, grounding his manic performance in a solid emotional reality; the film wouldn't work nearly as well as it does without him.
* SympathyForTheDevil: Marwood has some [[PoliticallyIncorrectHero typically intolerant attitudes towards homosexuality for the time]] and certainly is entitled to feel some grievances towards Monty having "narrowly escaped a buggering" that was decidedly unwanted. But he does feel some sympathy for Monty after reading his bittersweet farewell letter.
* TakeThat: Bruce Robinson alleges Creator/FrancoZeffirelli pursued him at one time. During an early scene in the film, Withnail reads a newspaper headline of "Boy Lands Plum Role For Top Italian Director," and goes on to suggest the reason the actor has the part is the director's amorous interest in him.
* ThrowTheDogABone: The farmer is nearly the only person in the countryside who's nice to the protagonists, bringing them wood and food.
* ToxicFriendInfluence: Withnail is hedonistic and self-destructive - and dragging Marwood along for the ride.
* UnkemptBeauty: Marwood until the end: he's bedraggled and long-haired, but still gorgeous. Eventually SheCleansUpNicely comes into affect when he has to look proper. Withnail is this throughout, but especially when they hit the countryside.
* UnsympatheticComedyProtagonist: Withnail - hedonistic, cowardly, and somewhat lacking in both common sense and empathy departments.
* UpperClassTwit: It's made very clear that Withnail comes from an upper-class family (e.g. he went to Harrow), and his common sense and work ethic are both inferior to Marwood's (who was born into the working class).
* VomitDiscretionShot: When Withnail throws up on Marwood's shoes.
* WalkingShirtlessScene: Marwood spends roughly half of the movie clad only in his underwear.
* WhenSheSmiles: Male version, subverted with Marwood, who has a very sweet smile, but he deploys it mainly when he's nervous, which ruins the effect slightly. Withnail smiles only a few times throughout the film, and only when he's panicking, trying to charm someone into giving him something or, when [[spoiler: Marwood gets his job]], [[spoiler: heartbroken]].
* WorkingClassHero: Unlike Withnail, Marwood wasn't born into money, which may be partially responsible for his better work ethic and common sense.
* YouWouldntHitAGuyWithGlasses: Withnail unsuccessfully tries this approach on the Irishman who is threatening to beat him and Marwood bloody.
-->'''Withnail:''' I have a heart condition. I have a h-h-heart condition. If you hit me, it's ''murder.''\\
'''Irishman:''' I'll murder the pair of yous!\\
'''Withnail:''' My wife is having a baby!
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-->''I have of late - but wherefore I know not - lost all my mirth, forgone all custom of exercises; and indeed it goes so heavily with my disposition that this goodly frame, the earth, seems to me a sterile promontory; this most excellent canopy, the air, look you, this brave o'erhanging firmament, this majestical roof fretted with golden fire, why, it appears no other thing to me than a foul and pestilential congregation of vapours. What a piece of work is a man! how noble in reason! how infinite in faculty! in form and moving how express and admirable! in action how like an angel! in apprehension how like a god! the beauty of the world! the paragon of animals! And yet to me, what is this quintessence of dust? man delights not me: no, nor woman neither.''\\
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