Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
The lives of several individuals intertwine as they go about their lives in their own unique ways, engaging in acts society as a whole might find disturbing in a desperate search for human connection.

Director:

Writer:

Reviews
Popularity
4,134 ( 191)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 12 wins & 23 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An unattractive seventh grader struggles to cope with inattentive parents, snobbish classmates, a smart older brother, an attractive younger sister, and her own insecurities in suburban New Jersey.

Director: Todd Solondz
Stars: Heather Matarazzo, Christina Brucato, Victoria Davis
Palindromes (2004)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Aviva is thirteen, awkward and sensitive. Her mother Joyce is warm and loving, as is her father, Steve, a regular guy who does have a fierce temper from time to time. The film revolves around her family, friends and neighbors.

Director: Todd Solondz
Stars: Jennifer Jason Leigh, Ellen Barkin, Stephen Adly Guirgis
Storytelling (2001)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

College and high school serve as the backdrop for two stories about dysfunction and personal turmoil.

Director: Todd Solondz
Stars: Selma Blair, Leo Fitzpatrick, Robert Wisdom
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Friends, family, and lovers struggle to find love, forgiveness, and meaning in a war-torn world riddled with comedy and pathos.

Director: Todd Solondz
Stars: Shirley Henderson, Allison Janney, Ally Sheedy
Dark Horse (2011)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Romance blooms between two thirty-somethings in arrested development: an avid toy collector who is the dark horse of his family and a depressed woman on the rebound.

Director: Todd Solondz
Stars: Jordan Gelber, Selma Blair, Christopher Walken
Ghost World (2001)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

With only the plan of moving in together after high school, two unusually devious friends seek direction in life. As a mere gag, they respond to a man's newspaper ad for a date, only to find it will greatly complicate their lives.

Director: Terry Zwigoff
Stars: Steve Buscemi, Thora Birch, Scarlett Johansson
Buffalo '66 (1998)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Billy is released after five years in prison. In the next moment, he kidnaps teenage student Layla and visits his parents with her, pretending she is his girlfriend and they will soon marry... See full summary »

Director: Vincent Gallo
Stars: Vincent Gallo, Christina Ricci, Ben Gazzara
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Ira is a nervous playwright waiting and hoping to succeed with his art, which he takes it very seriously. But following his dreams and ambitions isn't something easy to do, specially when ... See full summary »

Director: Todd Solondz
Stars: Todd Solondz, Max Cantor, Alexandra Gersten
Kids (1995)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A day in the life of a group of teens as they travel around New York City skating, drinking, smoking, and deflowering virgins.

Director: Larry Clark
Stars: Leo Fitzpatrick, Justin Pierce, Chloë Sevigny
Gummo (1997)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Lonely residents of a tornado-stricken Ohio town wander the deserted landscape trying to fulfill their boring, nihilistic lives.

Director: Harmony Korine
Stars: Nick Sutton, Jacob Sewell, Lara Tosh
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A lonely shoe salesman and an eccentric performance artist struggle to connect in this unique take on contemporary life.

Director: Miranda July
Stars: John Hawkes, Miranda July, Miles Thompson
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An original mix of fiction and reality illuminates the life of comic book hero everyman Harvey Pekar.

Directors: Shari Springer Berman, Robert Pulcini
Stars: Paul Giamatti, Shari Springer Berman, Harvey Pekar
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
Justin Elvin ...
...
Lila Glantzman-Leib ...
...
Psychiatrist
Rufus Read ...
...
...
Lenny Jordan
...
...
Detective Berman
...
Nancy
Edit

Storyline

A woman breaks up with her boyfriend, he thinks it's because he's fat. A man is unable to tell her next door neighbor he finds her sexually attractive. An old couple wants to split up, but they don't want to get a divorce. A therapist masturbates to teen magazines. An 11 year old kid is insecure about the fact that he hasn't cum yet. Office workers try to recall the face of a coworker who recently died. A woman is sure she has everything she could ever want. The lives of these individuals intertwine as they go about their lives in their own unique ways, engaging in acts society as a whole might find disturbing in a desperate search for human connection. Written by anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

16 October 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Todd Solondz's Untitled  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$30,230 (USA) (9 October 1998)

Gross:

$3,000,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Despite the fact that this was filmed in the standard spherical format, "Filmed in Panavision" is listed in the end credits. See more »

Goofs

The number on top of Vlad's taxi is 5C19, while the license plate number is 8H69. On an actual New York City taxi, these numbers would match. See more »

Quotes

[after Bill recalls his dream]
Psychiatrist: And how is this different?
Bill: I don't kill myself at the end.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Zomergasten: Episode #14.1 (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

Soave sia il vento from Cosi Fan Tutte
Written by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performed by Orchestra of the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Montserrat Caballé (as Montserrat Caballe),
Janet Baker, and Richard Van Allan
Conducted by Colin Davis (as Sir Colin Davis)
Courtesy of Phillips Records
By Arrangement with PolyGram Film & TV Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Prozac Cinema
2 May 2001 | by (California, USA) – See all my reviews

I recently saw my first Todd Solondz film, Welcome To The Dollhouse. What a dark ride!

This week it took a couple of evenings for me to get through Happiness. There was a lot to get. Goodness gracious! (As my dear Grandmother might say, who, incidentally, is not a candidate for viewing THIS one!)

I'd read the reviews for Happiness in 1998; I'd had a typically positive Psychic Movie Reviewer moment. This indie sounded unique. I waited for Happiness - sniffle - to appear upon my friendly video store shelves, but saw nada. I imagine that the store probably had like two copies maybe, displayed briefly upon a bottom shelf someplace. I forgot about the existence of this film, until recently. And I recently heard that a certain video chain had allegedly pulled Happiness from its shelves due to customer complaints.

Disturbing yet intriguing, this film pulled me along, the matrix of character interaction becoming increasingly more intricate and strange. Definitely not for all tastes!

The subject of child sexual abuse is handled matter of factly, yet chillingly and effectively. As with the domestic/sexual abuse of women, the problem of child sexual abuse is obviously one that crosses lines of class, social status, and profession. Happiness acknowledges this fact, in the character of family man/psychiatrist Bill Maplewood.

Loneliness, rage, sexual repression/obsession, disintegrating marriages, sadly sophisticated children, relationships built upon artifice, this film has it all. It's Prozac Cinema at its best: try to be on an even keel when pressing 'play'.

Spouses, parents and children seem to be communicating across a void.

After viewing Happiness for the second time, I realized that the entire soundtrack intentionally consisted of melodramatic, and/or ultra perky canned music: a perfectly ironical compliment and contrast in style with the strong, harsh, quirky film scenes.

Presentation: director Solondz sets up the viewer for traditional father/son talk scenes, via mood and pseudo canned music: giving the subject matter and dialogue all the more impact. WHAT did he just say? Ward and Beaver Cleaver never behaved this way.

Got 134 minutes and a desire to see something darkly different? Rent Happiness. Or buy it.


51 of 62 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Children can handle this film kentgrammel2
Funniest scene/line? solitary_bun
i hate this film moosepie
If you loved this film and are looking for another dark comedy project.. auduntverfjell
Best feel-good movie of all time Peatval
Discuss Happiness (1998) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?