Seven former college friends, along with a few new friends, gather for a weekend reunion at a summer house in New Hampshire to reminisce about the good old days, when they got arrested on the way to a protest in Washington, DC.
It is 1950s Nevada, and Professor Vivian Bell arrives to get a divorce. She's unsatisfied with her marriage, and feels out of place at the ranch she stays on, she finds herself increasingly... See full summary »
The talented Jane Hawkins (Dreya Weber, Lovely & Amazing) was an impressive gymnast at the top of her game until a devastating injury ended her career. Now she pours the passion, strength ... See full summary »
David De Simone
Berlin 1943/44 ("The Battle of Berlin"). Felice, an intelligent and courageous Jewish woman who lives under a false name, belongs to an underground organization. Lilly, a devoted mother of ... See full summary »
Rebecca has a very unusual secret, one that not even her best friends know about. The last person on earth she expects to reveal it to is a high priced escort named Paris. What starts as a ... See full summary »
Bryan Mordechai Jackson,
In nineteenth century Yorkshire wealthy orphan Anne Lister lives with an aunt and uncle, anxious for her to marry well and blissfully - unaware that she is a lesbian. Anne is recording her ... See full summary »
A young female intern at a small magazine company becomes involved with a drug-addicted lesbian photographer, both of whom seek to exploit each other for their respective careers, while slowly falling in love with each other.
Humberto Fuentes is a wealthy doctor whose wife has recently died. In spite of the advice of his children, he takes a trip to visit his former students who now work in impoverished villages... See full summary »
Dan Rivera González
In 1966 New Jersey, Jill Rosen, a frustrated high schooler, is intrigued by an enigmatic new student known only as the Sheik. Sheik is an Italian whose primary interests are his car, Frank ... See full summary »
1950. Rural Alabama. Cotton harvest. It's a make-or-break weekend for the Honeydripper Lounge and its owner, piano player Tyrone "Pine Top" Purvis. Deep in debt to the liquor man, the ... See full summary »
Lianna and her husband Dick have been married for a few years but the marriage isn't a happy one, since Dick treats her with arrogance. One day Lianna falls in love - with Ruth, a teacher. The people who know them act different: her husband with feelings of sexual betrayal, her children with curiosity and Lianna's friends with ambivalence. Written by
This was filmed in 16mm and was later blown up to 35mm. This was common for independent films of the 1980s. The film was originally meant to be shot on 35mm with a budget of $800,000. Sayles could not raise the funds for this budget, and so they "cut corners" by shooting on 16mm. See more »
[Upon finding her thirteen-year-old son's porno stash, right after finding that he was awake all night]
My God, he's had an orgy.
See more »
The opening credits credit only the production company and the crew members. The cast is not credited until the end credits. The title of the film, LIANNA, appears as the last title card after John Sayles is credited as writer, producer, director and editor. See more »
A Sayles masterpiece about the lesbian experience, far ahead of its time
John Sayles' ability to get you acquainted with his characters shines again in this study of a wife and mother who is coming to terms with her sexuality. Unlike the tawdry stories that focus solely on the sexual aspect of lesbian relationships, Sayles explores and reveals the complexity of discovering homosexual orientation - what it means to Lianna as her sexuality emerges from repression and what it means to her and others that she chooses to live truthfully with it.
There are some very rare vignettes in this film that bely what it is like to discover the attractiveness of women for the first time. Sayles does such a masterful job at portraying this process of discovery - it is joyful, playful, and exciting. These scenes remind me of Truffaut's "The Man Who Loved Women" (also badly remade in the USA, starring Burt Reynolds), but they seem to have a more natural depth and feel. Sayles' movies are typically populated with real characters, not posing movie stars. This film is true Sayles...so much is at stake for Lianna, and you are drawn into the aspects and dimensions of her life, the complexities and facets of the human sexual nature and of life in general, and what it means to come to terms with being gay.
12 of 16 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?