IMDb > The Unbelievable Truth (1989)
The Unbelievable Truth
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The Unbelievable Truth (1989) More at IMDbPro »


Overview

User Rating:
7.5/10   3,304 votes »
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Down 11% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
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View company contact information for The Unbelievable Truth on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
8 November 1990 (Australia) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
After serving time for murder, Josh Hutton returns to his home town where me meets Audry Hugo. No one can remember exactly what Josh did... See more » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
2 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Early Hartley Worth the Effort See more (21 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Adrienne Shelly ... Audry

Robert John Burke ... Josh (as Robert Burke)
Chris Cooke ... Vic Hugo (as Christopher Cooke)
Julia McNeal ... Pearl
Katherine Mayfield ... Liz Hugo
Gary Sauer ... Emmet
Mark Chandler Bailey ... Mike (as Mark Bailey)
David Healy ... Todd Whitbread

Matt Malloy ... Otis: Driver - Bum

Edie Falco ... Jane - The Waitress
Jeff Howard ... Irate Driver

Kelly Reichardt ... His Wife
Ross Turner ... Their Son

Paul Schulze ... Bill (as Paul Schultze)
Mike Brady ... Bob

Bill Sage ... Gus

Tom Thon ... News Vendor
Mary Sue Flynn ... Girl at Counter

Directed by
Hal Hartley 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Hal Hartley  written by (uncredited)

Produced by
Jerome Brownstein .... executive producer
Hal Hartley .... co-producer
Bruce Weiss .... co-producer
 
Original Music by
Jim Coleman 
 
Cinematography by
Michael Alan Spiller (director of photography) (as Michael Spiller)
 
Film Editing by
Hal Hartley 
 
Production Design by
Carla Gerona 
 
Set Decoration by
Sarah Stollman 
 
Makeup Department
Judy Chin .... hair stylist
Judy Chin .... makeup artist
 
Production Management
Bob Gosse .... production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Ted Hope .... first assistant director
 
Art Department
Daniel Ouellette .... property master
Steve Rosenzweig .... graphic artist
 
Sound Department
Nick Gomez .... sound recordist
Jeff Kushner .... boom operator
Reilly Steele .... sound re-recording mixer
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Richard Breen .... additional grip
Sarah Cawley .... first assistant camera
Joe Cochran .... best boy
Tory Estern .... additional gaffer
Anne Gwynn .... additional second assistant camera
Richard Ludwig .... still photographer
Tami Reiker .... second assistant camera
Chris Rogers .... key grip
Neil Shapiro .... additional second assistant camera
Frank Stubblefield .... gaffer
Heather White .... additional second assistant camera
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Kelly Reichardt .... wardrobe supervisor
 
Editorial Department
Nick Gomez .... assistant editor
 
Music Department
The Brothers Kendall .... performer: additional songs
Jim Coleman .... musician: keyboard sampling
Wild Blue Yonder .... performer: additional songs
 
Other crew
Kaethe Fine .... office coordinator
Paul Giorgi .... production assistant
Peter Grand .... continuity advisor
Dan Leiner .... production assistant
Mary McGloughlin .... production assistant
Megan O'Niel .... production assistant
Chris Parlow .... production assistant
Harriet Phillimore .... production assistant
Ilene Podgur .... production assistant
Ann Ruark .... script supervisor
Andy Sands .... production assistant
Greg Skorka .... production assistant
 

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Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
90 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
The paperback that Audry is reading in the bookstore scene is THE JESUS FACTOR, a 1970 work of fiction about the threat of( or actual lack of the threat) of nuclear war.See more »
Goofs:
Crew or equipment visible: When Audry and Emmet are walking in the street rite after Audry tells Emmet she does not want to go out with him anymore if you look behind Audry you can see a car approach the corner and a crew member directing the car to turn left so it does not interfere with the shot, the crew member even walks up to the car.See more »
Quotes:
Audry:Emmet, don't be maudlin.See more »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

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5 out of 6 people found the following review useful.
Early Hartley Worth the Effort, 5 January 2004
Author: gpadillo from Portland, Maine

Fraught with over obvious symbolism, Hartley's early feature is nonetheless a joy to watch. Hal here shows us his uncanny ability to cast his characters perfectly came early in his career.

Adrienne Shelley is a near perfect foil to herself, equal parts annoying teen burgeoning in her sexuality (though using sex for several years); obsessed with doom and inspired by idealism gone wrong she is deceptively – and simultaneously – complex and simple. Her Audrey inspires so many levels of symbolism it is almost embarrassingly rich (e.g., her modeling career beginning with photos of her foot – culminating her doing nude (but unseen) work; Manhattan move; Europe trip; her stealing, then sleeping with the mechanics wrench, etc.)

As Josh, Robert Burke gives an absolutely masterful performance. A reformed prisoner/penitent he returns to his home town to face down past demons, accept his lot and begin a new life. Dressed in black, and repeatedly mistaken for a priest, he corrects everyone ("I'm a mechanic"), yet the symbolism is rich: he abstains from alcohol, he practices celibacy (is, in fact a virgin), and seemingly has taken on vows of poverty, and humility as well. The humility seems hardest to swallow seeming, at times, almost false, a pretense. Yet, as we learn more of Josh we see genuineness in his modesty, that his humility is indeed earnest and believable. What seems ironic is the character is fairly forthright in his simplicity, yet so richly drawn it becomes the viewer who wants to make him out as more than what he actually is. A fascinatingly written character, perfectly played.

The scene between Josh and Jane (a wonderful, young Edie Falco . . . "You need a woman not a girl") is hilarious . . . real. But Hartley can't leave it as such and his trick, having the actors repeat the dialogue over-and-over becomes frustratingly "arty" and annoying . . . until again it becomes hilarious. What a terrific sense of bizarre reality this lends the film (like kids in a perpetual "am not"/"are too" argument).

Hartley's weaves all of a small neighborhood's idiosyncrasies into a tapestry of seeming stereotypes but which delves far beneath the surface, the catalyst being that everyone believes they know what the "unbelievable truth" of the title is, yet no two people can agree (including our hero) on what exactly that truth is. A wonderful little movie with some big ideas.

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