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Love Liza (2002)

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Following the unexplained suicide of his wife Liza, a web designer turns to gasoline fumes and remote-control airplanes while avoiding an inevitable conflict with his mother-in-law.



2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Bern (as JD Walsh)
Jimmy Raskin ...
Mary Ann Bankhead
Sarah Koskoff ...
Mark Hannibal ...
Waiter with Drink
Bland Man
Trace Turville ...
Bland Woman
Gas Station
Tom Bailey
Jennifer Keddy ...
David Lenthall ...
Hobbytown USA Clerk (as David Lenthal)


Wilson Joel is a man in trouble. There's a searing pain in his gut that he can't tolerate and a dazed quietness to his struggle as he tries to maintain his equilibrium. Wilson is attempting to move on from the sudden and inexplicable suicide of his wife. His mother-in-law is there for him, but her sympathies turn quickly. He has an employer that seems to want to help him, and a workmate who wants him for herself. But nothing and no one can give Wilson solace; so, he seeks oblivion. It is not the usual alcohol or drugs. Wilson inhales fumes from gasoline cans and model airplane fuel and finds temporary salvation in the company of remote-control model enthusiasts. However, nothing that provides him relief really lasts. Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A Comic Tragedy


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:




| |


Release Date:

31 January 2003 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Con amor, Liza  »

Box Office


$1,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$15,522 (USA) (3 January 2003)


$211,724 (USA) (11 April 2003)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Wilson Joel: 2 on 1 gas.
Gas Station: Somebody over at Arlington hobby said they never heard of a plane that runs on gasoline.
Wilson Joel: Well mine does.
Gas Station: He said it was impossible because
Wilson Joel: I own a plane and it runs on gas and I wanna fly the thing right fucking now!
Gas Station: You don't have to yell.
Wilson Joel: Well, I just want to buy 2 dollars worth of fucking gas! 2 on 1... 2 on 1.
See more »

Crazy Credits

SPECIAL THANKS TO Melissa Morgan's Parents and Family See more »


Referenced in Film Geek (2005) See more »


Ghost Ship In A Storm
Written and Performed by Jim O'Rourke
© 1999 Field Code Music (BMI)
Courtesy of Drag City
See more »

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User Reviews

1 December 2005 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

One never knows how grief will affect anyone. The loss of a loved one is something no one is prepared for. When tragedy strikes, as it's the point of this film, the surviving spouse is so desolate that he cannot deal with his loss. That is why Wilson, the grieving husband of Liza goes to the deep end trying to cope with her untimely death.

Liza's death is not spoken of until Wilson receives a telephone call from the local newspaper editor that is trying to write an obituary about her death and asks whether he wants to mention the suicide, or not. We get a clue about what happened to Liza when Wilson goes to the garage and sees her car. This is a link, perhaps, as to why he resorts to sniffing gasoline, as a way to obliterate the tragedy from his mind, as Wilson tries to comprehend what could have motivated her suicide.

"Love Liza" is a different kind of film. It will irritate some viewers, but ultimately, it will reward those that stay with the story. The screen play written by Gordy Hoffman could have used some editing, but his story feels real. Todd Luiso directed with conviction.

The film's main character, Wilson, is brilliantly played by Phillip Seymour Hoffman, one actor who is always a pleasure to watch for the intensity he brings to his appearances. In fact, his Wilson is one of the best roles he has played. Kathy Bates, on the other hand, as the mother of the dead Liza, is only seen briefly, but her scenes convey the impression how this woman is suffering as she seeks answers about her daughter's untimely departure. Sarah Koskoff, Stephen Tobolowsky and Jack Kehler, especially, make good contributions to the film.

This film is a must for Phillip Seymour Hoffman's fans.

22 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Comedy??? Peter Venkman
Jim O'Rourke lhippert
Pretentious Twaddle: LOVE LIZA wmcadams
Gas Huffing Before AND after suicide???? mccarma
Other movies like this one... fdask
Hoffman Vs. Jack Black dbowshie
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