MOVIEmeter
Top 5000
Up 3 this week

Adaptation. (2002)

 -  Comedy | Crime | Drama  -  10 January 2003 (USA)
7.8
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.8/10 from 118,228 users   Metascore: 83/100
Reviews: 694 user | 239 critic | 40 from Metacritic.com

A lovelorn screenwriter becomes desperate as he tries and fails to adapt The Orchid Thief by Susan Orlean for the screen.

Director:

Writers:

(book), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 27 titles
created 29 Dec 2011
 
a list of 35 titles
created 09 Apr 2012
 
a list of 30 titles
created 30 Apr 2012
 
a list of 32 titles
created 29 Dec 2012
 
...
a list of 49 titles
created 4 months ago
 

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Adaptation. (2002)

Adaptation. (2002) on IMDb 7.8/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Adaptation..

User Polls

Won 1 Oscar. Another 53 wins & 51 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

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

A disk containing the memoirs of a CIA agent ends up in the hands of two unscrupulous gym employees who attempt to sell it.

Directors: Ethan Coen, Joel Coen
Stars: Brad Pitt, Frances McDormand, George Clooney
Down by Law (1986)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

The story of three different men in a Louisiana prison and their eventual journey.

Director: Jim Jarmusch
Stars: Tom Waits, John Lurie, Roberto Benigni
The Sting (1973)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

In 1930s Chicago, a young con man seeking revenge for his murdered partner teams up with a master of the big con to win a fortune from a criminal banker.

Director: George Roy Hill
Stars: Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Robert Shaw
Mystery Train (1989)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Three stories are connected by a Memphis hotel and the spirit of Elvis Presley.

Director: Jim Jarmusch
Stars: Masatoshi Nagase, Yûki Kudô, Screamin' Jay Hawkins
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Aspiring comic Rupert Pupkin wants to achieve success in showbiz, by resorting to stalking his idol, a late night talk show host who craves his own privacy.

Director: Martin Scorsese
Stars: Robert De Niro, Jerry Lewis, Diahnne Abbott
Adam's Apples (2005)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A neo-nazi sentenced to community service at a church clashes with the blindly devotional priest.

Director: Anders Thomas Jensen
Stars: Ulrich Thomsen, Mads Mikkelsen, Nicolas Bro
Filth I (2013)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A bipolar, bigoted junkie cop manipulates and hallucinates his way through the festive season in a bid to secure promotion and win back his wife and daughter.

Director: Jon S. Baird
Stars: James McAvoy, Jamie Bell, Eddie Marsan
Defendor (2009)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A comedy centered around three characters: an everyday guy who comes to believe he's a superhero, his psychiatrist, and the teenager he befriends.

Director: Peter Stebbings
Stars: Woody Harrelson, Kat Dennings, Sandra Oh
Bad Santa (2003)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A miserable conman and his partner pose as Santa and his Little Helper to rob department stores on Christmas Eve. But they run into problems when the conman befriends a troubled kid, and the security boss discovers the plot.

Director: Terry Zwigoff
Stars: Billy Bob Thornton, Bernie Mac, Lauren Graham
Biography | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Based on the true story of Jack DiNorscio, a mobster who defended himself in court for what would be the longest mafia trial in U.S. history.

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: Vin Diesel, Peter Dinklage, Ron Silver
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Bi-polar mall security guard Ronnie Barnhardt is called into action to stop a flasher from turning shopper's paradise into his personal peep show. But when Barnhardt can't bring the culprit to justice, a surly police detective, is recruited to close the case.

Director: Jody Hill
Stars: Seth Rogen, Anna Faris, Ray Liotta
Flawless (1999)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

An ultraconservative police officer suffers a debilitating stroke and is assigned to a rehabilitative program that includes singing lessons - with the drag queen next door.

Director: Joel Schumacher
Stars: Robert De Niro, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Barry Miller
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
Litefoot ...
Russell (as G. Paul Davis)
...
...
...
...
...
Ranger Steve Neely (scenes deleted)
...
...
...
Prosecutor
...
Orlean's Husband
Edit

Storyline

While his latest movie Being John Malkovich (1999) is in production, screenwriter Charlie Kaufman is hired by Valerie Thomas to adapt Susan Orlean's non-fiction book "The Orchid Thief" for the screen. Thomas bought the movie rights before Orlean wrote the book, when it was only an article in The New Yorker. The book details the story of rare orchid hunter John Laroche, whose passion for orchids and horticulture made Orlean discover passion and beauty for the first time in her life. Charlie wants to be faithful to the book in his adaptation, but despite Laroche himself being an interesting character in his own right, Charlie is having difficulty finding enough material in Laroche to fill a movie, while equally not having enough to say cinematically about the beauty of orchids. At the same time, Charlie is going through other issues in his life. His insecurity as a person doesn't allow him to act upon his feelings for Amelia Kavan, who is interested in him as a man. And Charlie's twin ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

orchid | book | screenwriter | thief | twin | See more »

Taglines:

Charlie Kaufman writes the way he lives... With Great Difficulty. His Twin Brother Donald Lives the way he writes... with foolish abandon. Susan writes about life... But can't live it. John's life is a book... Waiting to be adapted. One story... Four Lives... A million ways it can end. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, sexuality, some drug use and violent images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

10 January 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Orchid Thief  »

Box Office

Budget:

$19,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$21,240 (Hong Kong) (6 June 2003)

Gross:

$89,971 (Hong Kong) (13 June 2003)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TV)

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Nicolas Cage was given completely separate credits for Charlie Kaufman and Donald Kaufman. The credits were given in order of appearance and each of Nicolas Cage's credits appeared in the order that Charlie and Donald appeared. See more »

Goofs

At the café, Charlie Kaufman's arms/hands jump from the table to his lap between shots. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Charlie Kaufman: [voiceover] Do I have an original thought in my head? My bald head. Maybe if I were happier, my hair wouldn't be falling out. Life is short. I need to make the most of it. Today is the first day of the rest of my life. I'm a walking cliché. I really need to go to the doctor and have my leg checked. There's something wrong. A bump. The dentist called again. I'm way overdue. If I stop putting things off, I would be happier. All I do is sit on my fat ass. If my ass wasn't fat I would ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Special thanks to the guy on the bench. See more »

Connections

References Happy Together (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Alison
Written and Performed by Elvis Costello
Published by BMG Songs, Inc. o/b/o BMG Music Publishing Ltd.
Courtesy of Rhino Entertainment Company/Elvis Costello Music
By Arrangement with Warner Special Products and Courtesy of Elvis Costello Ltd.
Under license from Demon Music Group Ltd.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
actors & director create startling and original film
4 December 2002 | by See all my reviews

"Adaptation" is an off-the-wall film with a startling second half. Overall, the film is darkly comic, but viewers get an unexpected dose of movie action and violence before everything is said and done.

It's fair to say that there is a fair amount of violence in the film, and even when you know it's coming, you're still caught off guard. Spike Jonze is merciless in this regard. Some of the scenes are incredibly graphic, in fact.

There is a certain adolescent male tone to the film (the violence + sexual fantasy + masturbation). This is partially due to characterization and partially due to the director's own aesthetic and perspective. It's not a bad thing, necessarily, either. It just feels as if an unassuming (white male) kid who grew up thinking a lot about girls and watching movies where stuff blowed up made this film... See it and you'll know what I'm saying.

The script is crazy. Absolutely zany. Akin to "Being John Malkovich" really. Fortunately, this well gives opportunity for Nic Cage, Meryl Streep, and Chris Cooper to really be free with their art.

Cage has a difficult role, portraying two very different identical twin brothers. Cage is at the emotional core of the film. If his performance doesn't resonate, the film doesn't work. I thought Cage was excellent. And that the script really gives him some wonderful, challenging material to work with. His first scene with Tilda Swinton (looking gorgeous!) is excellent.

Meryl Streep...well, what can be said. She's fantastic. She exudes a tiredness and connectedness and hopelessness and sadness, evolving the character brilliantly over the course of the film.

Similarly, Chris Cooper brings a humanity to the role of the Orchad Thief, really grounding the narrative and making it all believable. Again, he's given a brilliant opening scene and he works wonders with it. Throughout, he is believably arrogant, lonely, vulnerable, and just plain real. Cooper's performance is as rich as any other I've seen this year; truly, truly sublime.

"Adaptation" is certainly not for everyone. If you're looking for something starkly different and simmering with originality, give this film a try, though. Amidst some cloying self-referential clap-trap, there are actually some really freshing film moments.


80 of 133 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
What happened to Nicholas Cage????!!!!! justice666
This movie is so basic. I CAN'T hpavillion1
Anyone else thinks the waitress was unnecessarily rude? hesperus59
A list of the best movis not to be in the top: 250 smashart
5 Phrases worth the ticket josehugo8av
Does the photo on the book change slightly? kennifer
Discuss Adaptation. (2002) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?