Far From Heaven

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Product Overview

A seductive story of one seemingly perfect family and the forbidden desires that threaten to tear them apart.

Specifications

Studio Universal
SKU 40219719
UPC 025192245626
UPC 14 00025192245626
Format DVD
Release Date 8/24/2004
Rating Rating
Keywords
1950s
Essential Cinema
Family Interaction
Homosexuality
Live-Action
Marriage
Parents
Recommended
Theatrical Release
Editors Note
Note The model marriage of Frank (Dennis Quaid) and Cathy Whitaker (Julianne Moore) in 1950s Hartford is depicted in television ads, and a magazine features photographs of Cathy as a model homemaker and citizen. Yet, behind the curtains of their dream home, Cathy and Frank hide scandalous secrets. Frank has been masquerading his homosexuality and is seeing a doctor for a heterosexual conversion. Meanwhile, Cathy finds solace in her gardener, Raymond (Dennis Haysbert), a black man about whom Cathy must conceal her growing feelings, since simply being seen with him is cause for scandal.^Filmmaker Douglas Sirk employed the trappings of the melodrama to satirize and criticize narrow minds in the 1950s status quo with films such as ALL THAT HEAVEN ALLOWS. Todd Haynes (SAFE) uses Sirk's highly stylized universe to critique society half a century later in FAR FROM HEAVEN. The film uses thematic elements of Sirk's such as isolating characters through windows and vivid, symbolic colors and flowers. It also applies Sirkian plot devices such as gossiping neighbors and demonizing television. Attacking prejudice, Haynes' methods are particularly effective as he uses an antiquated style of filmmaking to shed light on societal problems that are pervasive even in the 21st Century.
Reviews
Entertainment Weekly "...FAR FROM HEAVEN is nothing short of a masterpiece....It seems, in a single visionary stroke, to have taken the spirit of American independent cinema and brought it full circle back to the soul of vintage Hollywood..." 09/27/2002 p.49-54
Hollywood Reporter "...It's a bold experiment....[With a] terrific look and perfectly pitched performances..." 09/03/2002 p.20
Rolling Stone "...A gorgeously overheated imitation of life..." 10/19/2002 p.114
Variety "...An accomplished marriage of elaborate style and content....The film is a jewel on every technical level. Its visual sumptuousness seduces from the opening frame to the last..." 09/09/2002 p.29
Box Office "...[Moore gives an] extraordinarily nuanced performance..." 11/01/2002 p.126-7
New York Times "...Ardent and intelligent....Mr. Haynes is fiercely devoted to his actors....It discover the aching, desiring humanity in a genre -- and a period....In a word, it's divine..." 11/08/2002 p.E1
USA Today "...Haynes gets the look and feel right...FAR FROM HEAVEN also has emotional force..." 11/08/2002 p.7E
Total Film "Julianne Moore is excellent." 01/01/2004 p.121
Uncut "Quaid won numerous awards....Arguably his richest performance." 03/01/2005 p.65
Directors
Todd Haynes
Actors
Julianne Moore
Patricia Clarkson
Dennis Quaid
Dennis Haysbert
Cast & Crew
Bette Henritze - Actor
Dennis Haysbert - Actor
Dennis Quaid - Actor
James Rebhorn - Actor
Julianne Moore - Actor
Patricia Clarkson - Actor
Viola Davis - Actor
Edward Lachman - Cinematographer
Todd Haynes - Director
James Lyons - Editor
Elmer Bernstein - Original Music
Christine Vachon - Producer
Jody Patton - Producer
Mark Friedberg - Production Designer
Todd Haynes - Writer
Technical Info
Original Release Date 2002
Catalog ID 22456
UPC 00025192245626
Number of Discs 1
Running Time 108 minutes
Color Color
Original Language English
Available Subtitles French, Spanish
Available Audio Tracks English [CC], English, French Dubbed
Aspect Ratio
1.85:1
Awards
Oscar (2003) Edward Lachman, Nominee, Best Achievement in Cinematography,Elmer Bernstein, Nominee, Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Score,Julianne Moore, Nominee, Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role,Todd Haynes, Nominee, Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen
Reviews
ReviewSource The Village Voice
Review Sirk is a figure who has thrived on exegesis, his own and others'. For those familiar with the Sirkian text, Haynes (like Mark Rappaport in Rock Hudson's Home Movies) has done a splendid job of filmed film criticism. Without resorting to camp or parody, Haynes (like Sirk, but differently) has transformed the rhetoric of Hollywood melodrama into something provocative, rich, and strange. For those who are not Sirk-literate, Far From Heaven may seem even more startling-a full-bodied simulation of a genre that, historically speaking, should no longer exist. It may well be the American movie of the year.
ReviewDate
ReviewPage
Reviewer J. Hoberman
ReviewRating 10
ReviewSource Chicago Sun-Times
Review Because the film deliberately lacks irony, it has a genuine dramatic impact; it plays like a powerful 1957 drama we've somehow never seen before. The effect is oddly jolting: Contemporary movies take so many subjects for granted that they never really look at them. Haynes, by moving back in time, is able to bring his issues into focus. We care about the characters in the way its period expected us to.
ReviewDate
ReviewPage
Reviewer Roger Ebert
ReviewRating 10
ReviewSource James Berardinelli's ReelViews
Review Haynes' style and approach draw the viewer in gently, but firmly. Once we are established in the seemingly-perfect world of Cathy and Frank, he allows their marriage and their lives to unravel before our eyes. Far From Heaven is not "realistic" in the traditional sense of the word (Haynes calls it "hyper-realistic"), but the emotions of the characters are genuine, and we feel for them and with them. In the end, Far From Heaven tells a simple story, but there's nothing remotely simple about the impact it has upon the viewer.
ReviewDate
ReviewPage
Reviewer James Berardinelli
ReviewRating 9
Features
DVD, Widescreen, Dolby Digital (5.1), Spanish, French, Subtitled
Product Attributes
Actor Moore,Julianne
Label Mca Home Video
Music Format DVD
Video Format DVD
Quotes
Robin Clifford, Reeling Reviews Rarely does there come along a movie of such quality on so many levels.
Lou Lumenick, New York Post Perhaps the year's most daring and fully realized movie.
Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly ...a dazzling conceptual feat, but more than that, it's a work of enthralling drama.
Peter Travers, Rolling Stone Julianne Moore and Dennis Quaid "Give The Performances of Their Careers!

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