6.9/10
17,364
83 user 25 critic

The House of the Spirits (1993)

R | | Drama, Romance | 1 April 1994 (USA)
A rancher, his clairvoyant wife and their family face turbulent years in South America in this adaptation of Isabel Allende's best-seller.

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Writers:

(novel),
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12 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
António Assunção ...
Man at Cattlemarket (as António Assumpção)
Julie Balloo ...
Young Lady
Frank Baker ...
Intelligence Officer
...
João Cabral ...
Soldier
Carlos César ...
Ambassador's Driver
...
Rogério Claro ...
Man in Club
Edith Clement ...
Midwife
...
...
Nana
Oscar A. Colon ...
Sheriff
Franco Diogent ...
Man at the Party (as Franco Diogene)
Pedro Efe ...
Interrogation Officer
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Storyline

Chile, second half of the 20th century. The poor Esteban marries Clara and they get a daughter, Blanca. Esteban works hard and eventually gets money to buy a hacienda, eventually to become a local patriarch. He becomes very conservative and is feared by his workers. When Blanca grows up, she falls in love with a young revolutionary, Pedro, who urges the workers to fight for socialism. It is unavoidable that Pedro and Esteban are pitted against each other. Esteban tries to stop the love affair between Pedro and his daughter by all means possible but soon Blanca becomes pregnant and has a daughter. The void between father and daughter seems unbridgeable when Blanca moves in with Pedro. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexuality, and for violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

| | | |

Language:

|

Release Date:

1 April 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La casa de los espíritus  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$6,265,311 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of two 1993's releases starring Jeremy Irons, with the other film being M. Butterfly (1993). See more »

Goofs

The Chilean army of the 1973 is depicted using the wrong equipment such as G3 rifles, M48 tanks, and Fiat G91 aircrafts. The correct weapons would be FAL rifles, M4 Sherman medium tanks, and either Hawker Hunter or F-80 Shooting Star aircrafts. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Esteban Trueba: It's good to be back.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mavra mesanyhta: Episode #1.19 (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

La Cumparsita
Written by Gerardo Matos Rodríguez (as Matos Rodriguez)
Performed by Adalbert Lutter and His Orchestra
Published by G. Ricordi & C.S.P.A., Milano
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User Reviews

Bad directing, good theme and characters
28 March 1999 | by (California) – See all my reviews

I've never been a fan of Bille August, and this film has only furthered my opinion of his work. I found the directing, as well as the editing, choppy and incoherent. Mr. August tried too hard to be mystical and discreet in his telling of the tale--to the point of being annoyingly aloof and superficial.

The take-home message is, however, refreshing in its complexity and layers. The events all seem to come full circle and continue through the generations of the family, as Clara verbalized in her diaries, "the relationships between events." Lende's message was that evil begets evil, and nothing good came from malice. Such is sadly noted upon reflection that many misfortunes stemmed from poor judgment, and unacknowledged or unrectified wrongdoings in the past.

I thought the characters Farula and Esteban were the best-written and the best-acted, by far. Glenn Close exuded every bit of the torn and love-deprived spinster sister, her very gaze a window to her harsh and barren life. Jeremy Irons' portrayal of the dark and contradictory Esteban was brazen yet vulnerable, between his political persona and love for his wife.


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