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Drowning by Numbers (1988)

 -  Comedy | Drama  -  June 1991 (USA)
7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 5,013 users  
Reviews: 28 user | 18 critic

Tired of her husband's philanderous ways, the mother of two daughters drowns her husband. With the reluctant help of the local coroner, the murder is obscured. Her daughters are having ... See full summary »

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Title: Drowning by Numbers (1988)

Drowning by Numbers (1988) on IMDb 7.3/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Madgett
Jason Edwards ...
Smut
Bryan Pringle ...
Jake
Trevor Cooper ...
Hardy
...
Bellamy
John Rogan ...
Gregory
Paul Mooney ...
Teigan
Jane Gurnett ...
Nancy
Kenny Ireland ...
Jonah Bognor
Michael Percival ...
Moses Bognor
Joanna Dickens ...
Mrs. Hardy
Janine Duvitski ...
Marina Bellamy
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Storyline

Tired of her husband's philanderous ways, the mother of two daughters drowns her husband. With the reluctant help of the local coroner, the murder is obscured. Her daughters are having similar problems with relationships, and tend to follow their mother's example, and the coroner becomes reluctantly duplicitous. As the plot progresses, visual and spoken numbers appear in the scenes, counting from one to 100. Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

coroner | murder | number | game | counting | See more »

Taglines:

The great death game.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for numerous scenes of nudity and sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

June 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Drowning by Numbers  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Gross:

$424,773 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The runner throwing streamers as he runs along is actually based on a real, popular game in England also known as 'Paper Chase' A.K.A 'Hare And Hounds': with the runner (Hare) leaving streamers in his wake just as a hare leaves a scent, as such the hounds will track him down based on the streamers (scent). See more »

Quotes

Cissie Colpitts 1: The flies are settling on him.
Madgett: Well, shoo them off. Use a newspaper.
Cissie Colpitts 1: Madgett, I'm in need of legal aid, not a flyswatter.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Peter Greenaway in Indianapolis (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

2nd Movement of Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante for Violin, Viola and Orchestra K354
Music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (as Mozart)
Performed by Alexander Balanescu (violin) and Jonathan Carney (viola)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An intriguing puzzle that's fun to decipher
15 August 1999 | by (England) – See all my reviews

This is a picture that offers so much to the viewer. It is beautiful, but also, at times, grotesque. It is intriguing and complex, and covers a cornucopia of subjects. The film has an elegant Englishness about it. It is a film that always requires your attention and one that you will want to return to.

The film begins with a young girl (adorned in a dress from Velazquez's painting Las Meninas) who is skipping and counting stars, 100 of them (some of these stars have Greenaway names like Hoyten, Luper and Spica). She is the film's navigator.

The story is about three women, all with the same name, Cissie Colpitts, each from different age groups, who have something in common, they each murder their husbands by drowning them. They escape punishment from this by consenting to the needs of an amorous coroner, Madgett. Madgett's young son, Smut, tells us about different games, each of them rather odd. The film has a wonderful surreal feel to it. For instance, a man and a woman on bicycles collide with two dead cows, but it hardly perturbs them. Throughout the film there are the numbers 1 to 100 placed in ascending order on display in some peculiar positions. It's a fascinating riddle.


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