7.1/10
8,535
114 user 78 critic

Thirteen Conversations About One Thing (2001)

R | | Drama | 5 July 2002 (USA)
In New York City, the lives of a lawyer, an actuary, a house-cleaner, a professor and the people around them intersect as they ponder order and happiness in the face of life's cold unpredictability.

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8 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
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Bureau Chief
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Co-Worker
Sig Libowitz ...
Assistant Attorney
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Legal Assistant
Dion Graham ...
Defense Attorney
Fernando López ...
Defendant (as Fernando Lopez)
Brian Smiar ...
Judge
Paul Austin ...
Bartender
Allie Woods Jr. ...
Cab Driver (as Allie Woods)
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...
Chris Hammond, Aspiring Medical Student
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Storyline

A physics professor approaching middle age decides to change his life with unexpected results. A rising young prosecuting attorney's plans are thrown into disarray as the result of a single careless act while distracted. A woman reluctantly faces her husband's infidelity. An envious insurance claims manager with family problems seeks revenge on a cheerful coworker, but has second thoughts. And an optimistic young cleaning woman awaits a miracle, only to have her faith shaken by a traumatic event. These ordinary people all find themselves asking the fundamental question philosophers have pondered throughout history: What is happiness, and how does one achieve it? Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Ask yourself if you're really happy.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and brief drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

5 July 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

13 Conversations  »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$89,499 (USA) (24 May 2002)

Gross:

$3,287,435 (USA) (27 November 2002)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The films story is inspired by two different head injuries that director Jill Sprecher endured. See more »

Goofs

Walker writes the formula for acceleration incorrectly on the blackboard. It should be f/s2, where he writes (f/s)2. Then, a student says: "Don't you have to assume that the velocity is constant during the deceleration period?", and Walker partly agrees. Deceleration means that the velocity (or rather the speed) diminishes - constant velocity means there is no deceleration or acceleration. A physics teacher should never make these mistakes. See more »

Quotes

Gene: [Angrily] What is it? What are you smiling at?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Shawn Elliott is correctly spelled in the first set of credits, but is spelled as 'Shawn Elliot" in the end credits. See more »

Connections

References Magnolia (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

Put on a Happy Face
Performed by Matt Monro
Music by Charles Strouse
Lyrics by Lee Adams
© 1960 Strada Music (ASCAP)
Administered by Helene Blue Musique LTD
Courtesy of Capitol Records
Under license from EMI-Capitol Music Special Markets
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User Reviews

A Terrific Ensemble in a Provocative Conversation Starter
29 September 2003 | by (Evanston, IL) – See all my reviews

My wife and I launched immediately into a conversation about this film before the end credits had even finished rolling. It's the kind of film that makes you want to apply some of its ideas and themes to your own life and experiences.

At first I was worried. When the film began, I thought it was going to be an episodic experimental piece, with 13 different scenes each dealing with an aspect of happiness. This bothered me, because the first segment of the film left me wanting more of the same story and I would have been disappointed if the screenplay had never come back to it. However, the first few segments that seem at first to be unrelated begin to mesh in a fluid way (but never in a way that feels forced), and what happens in one begins to illuminate the actions and feelings in another.

Because of it's episodic nature, the actors don't get a lot of room to flesh out their characters, but the performances are still strong. Alan Arkin is especially good (he always is).

This one comes highly recommended.

Grade: A-


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