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Limbo (1999)

R  |   |  Adventure, Drama, Thriller  |  7 July 1999 (France)
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 4,991 users  
Reviews: 140 user | 44 critic

In an economically devastated Alaskan town, a fisherman with a troublesome past dates a woman whose young daughter does not approve of him. When he witnesses the murder of his shady brother, he, the woman and the kid run to the wilderness.

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Title: Limbo (1999)

Limbo (1999) on IMDb 7.1/10

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2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Hermínio Ramos ...
Ricky
...
Dawn McInturff ...
Audrey
...
Bobby Gastineau
Kathryn Grody ...
Frankie
Tom Biss ...
Baines
Rita Taggart ...
Lou
...
Harmon King
...
Albright
Jimmy MacDonell ...
Randy Mason
Mérit Carlson-van Dort ...
Stacy
Monica Brandner ...
Corky
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Storyline

Limbo tells the story of people trying to reinvent themselves in the Southeastern islands of Alaska. The story revolves around Joe Gastineau, a fisherman traumatised by an accident at sea years before, singer Donna de Angelo and her disaffected daughter Noelle who come into Joe's life. When Joe's fast-talking half-brother Bobby returns to town and asks Joe for a favor, the lives of the characters are changed forever. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Acclaimed director John Sayles takes you to the heart of America's last frontier See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 July 1999 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Ennen kuolemaa  »

Box Office

Budget:

$8,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$139,634 (USA) (4 June 1999)

Gross:

$1,997,807 (USA) (13 August 1999)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

In a scene near the beginning Donna (Mastrantonio) and Joe (Straithairn) are riding in his truck. Donna's cigarette smoke is blowing away behind her and in close-up her hair is moving, but throughout the scene you can see the windows are obviously both closed. See more »

Quotes

Donna De Angelo: How come you're not married?
[they laugh at her bluntness]
Donna De Angelo: Sorry, if you don't want to say...
Joe Gastineau: Probably the same reason you're not married.
Donna De Angelo: Because such a high percentage of men are jerks?
Joe Gastineau: No.
Donna De Angelo: Because women are scarce and winters are long?
Joe Gastineau: That's true, but...
Donna De Angelo: Because you're looking for someone fun to be with? Who understands your bullshit but is still crazy about you anyway?
Joe Gastineau: That's a bit much to ask for.
[...]
See more »

Soundtracks

Better Off Without You
Written by Marshall Chapman, Dennis Walker and Fontaine Brown
Performed by Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Challenging, absorbing…another John Sayles gem cut distinctly different - more than meets the eye
6 January 2000 | by (sf, usa) – See all my reviews

Once again, as do all John Sayles films, this is no Hollywood fare. There are no easy answers or solutions to the questions raised or problems illustrated. John Sayles gives his insightful subtle approaches to another aspect of life and living, of ordinary people tackling everyday encounters and challenges. Nothing spectacular (yet it is quietly spectacular). It's another multi-character study, and Sayles is very good at telling the story and providing the different premises and details in a seemingly casual manner. Sayles fans know it will not be a boring journey - life lessons will be assimilated.

In LIMBO, photography is skillfully delivered by veteran cinematographer Haskell Wexler (the unforgettable "Medium Cool" 1969, which he also wrote and directed; "The Thomas Crown Affair" 1968 with director Norman Jewison; two with Sayles: "Matewan" 1987, "The Secret of Roan Inish" 1994). Here, graphic detail shots are included on fishing, informing us of the intricacies involved - it's Sayles ingredients to the core.

Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, as always, a tour de force. She gets to demonstrate what a wonderful singer she can be. She did a terrific job - she sings so well that it sounds like Judy Collins at times! David Strathairn, for once, is not in a supporting role. He is in the male lead role and as expected, a quiet sensitive delivery of his character as a fisherman incognito. There is mother and daughter tension at play here. Vanessa Martinez played the teenage daughter and what a superb performance - hers is no easy role. The segment by the campfire where she reads from a diary book, her subtle expressions and poignant portrayal complete this triangle of complex emotional cauldron a-brewing…yet she held her own in capturing our attention on her touching delivery.

This is not an easy film to consume - it provides mind probing and requires reflective thinking. A John Sayles fan MUST-SEE, or anyone who's ready for a different movie and a change of pace.

Music is by Mason Daring. As usual, the film is written, directed, and edited by John Sayles himself.


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