IMDb > "Great Performances" The Lost Language of Cranes (1991)

"Great Performances" The Lost Language of Cranes (1991)

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David Leavitt (novel)
Sean Mathias (writer)
View company contact information for The Lost Language of Cranes on IMDbPro.
Original Air Date:
14 November 1991 (Season 20, Episode 17)
When a young gay man comes out of the closet. His friends support him, but when he comes out to his parents, he stirs up a wealth of hidden feelings and secrets in their relationship. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Beautiful Movie See more (16 total) »


 (Episode Cast) (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Brian Cox ... Owen Benjamin

Eileen Atkins ... Rose Benjamin

Angus Macfadyen ... Philip Benjamin

Corey Parker ... Elliot Abrahams

Rene Auberjonois ... Geoffrey Lane

John Schlesinger ... Derek Moulthorpe
Cathy Tyson ... Jerene Parks
Richard Warwick ... Frank
Nicholas Le Prevost ... Nick

Ben Daniels ... Robin Bradley
Frank Middlemass ... Alex

Nigel Whitmey ... Winston Penn
Edmund Kente ... Bob
Paul Cottingham ... Porno Boy 1
Tom Harden ... Porno Boy 2
Sjaak Van der Bent ... Singer

Adam Matalon ... Doorman
Ben McVeigh ... Crane Child

Episode Crew
Directed by
Nigel Finch 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
David Leavitt  novel
Sean Mathias  writer

Produced by
Ruth Caleb .... producer
Kimberly Myers .... executive producer
Mark Shivas .... executive producer
Original Music by
Julian Wastall 
Cinematography by
Remi Adefarasin 
Film Editing by
Sue Wyatt 
Production Design by
Bruce Macadie 
Costume Design by
James Keast 
Makeup Department
Fran Needham .... makeup designer
Sound Department
John Pritchard .... sound
Camera and Electrical Department
Paddy Blake .... assistant camera
Sean Savage .... assistant camera

Series Crew
These people are regular crew members. Were they in this episode?
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Marion J. Caffey  creator
Daniel Ezralow  creator
Josh Groban  creator

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

UK:87 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:


Wasn't this originally shown on BBC in the early '90s?
See more »
8 out of 8 people found the following review useful.
Beautiful Movie, 5 June 2000
Author: Melissa Judd ( from Baltimore, MD

I bought this movie because (a) Angus MacFadyen stars; and (b) it was supposed to be a movie about a gay man who decides to come out to his parents when he finds himself falling in love. It was that, but it has so much more to offer than that aspect of homosexuality.

What impressed me most about the movie is that it shows gay men as having actual affection for each other. So many other movies seem to think it's OK to show gay men as long as they're not "flaunting" the physical aspect of their relationships. This movie allows us to see them as people who actually care about one another.

Angus MacFadyen - long hailed for his expressive eyes - is great as Philip, the son opening up to his parents, and thus inadvertently bringing their marriage into question. Brian Cox is wonderful as the father who decides, after years of living the "proper", straight life, he must now be true to himself. MacFadyen and Cox have a great chemistry, as Cox's Owen seeks to understand his own feelings by getting in touch with his son's. Both are fabulous actors who know the fine art of subtext.

One caveat: the box has Corey Parker as the headlining star. He's not. He's good as the emotionally unavailable - and quite annoying in light of Philip's sensitivity and openness - lover, but he's only there for a short time.

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