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Monster's Ball (2001)

R  |   |  Drama, Romance  |  1 March 2002 (USA)
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 68,566 users   Metascore: 69/100
Reviews: 518 user | 153 critic | 32 from Metacritic.com

After a family tragedy, a racist prison guard reexamines his attitudes while falling in love with the African American wife of the last prisoner he executed.

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Title: Monster's Ball (2001)

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 15 wins & 20 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Taylor Simpson ...
Lucille
Gabrielle Witcher ...
Betty
...
Amber Rules ...
Vera
...
Charles Cowan Jr. ...
Willie Cooper
Taylor LaGrange ...
Darryl Cooper
...
Ryrus Cooper (as Mos Def)
Anthony Bean ...
Dappa Smith
...
Georgia Ann Paynes
John McConnell ...
Harvey Shoonmaker
...
Phil Huggins
...
Tommy Roulaine
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Storyline

Set in the Southern United States, 'Monster's Ball' is a tale of a racist white man, Hank, who falls in love with a black woman named Leticia. Ironically Hank is a prison guard working on Death Row who executed Leticia's husband. Hank and Leticia's interracial affair leads to confusion and new ideas for the two unlikely lovers. Written by Anna <annachan@amazon.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A lifetime of change can happen in a single moment.

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexual content, language and violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 March 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El pasado nos condena  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$133,208 (USA) (4 January 2002)

Gross:

£2,267,433 (UK) (19 July 2002)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (unrated director's cut)

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film cast includes three Oscar winners: Billy Bob Thornton, Halle Berry' and Heath Ledger; and two Oscar nominees: Milo Addica and Will Rokos. See more »

Goofs

(at around 1h 29 mins) When Hank approaches Leticia's truck in the driveway, he puts a plastic gasoline can down next to the driveway. After she backs out, the can is gone although Hank has not picked it up. See more »

Quotes

Buck Grotowski: Who are you?
Leticia Musgrove: Um...
Buck Grotowski: You just walked in my house.
Leticia Musgrove: My bad. I thought...
Buck Grotowski: Hank? You lookin' for Hank?
Leticia Musgrove: Yes. Is he here?
Buck Grotowski: Who are you?
Leticia Musgrove: My name is Leticia Musgrove... and, uh... me and Hank is, uh... friends.
Buck Grotowski: Musgrove? Please, little darlin', have you got a cigarette?
Leticia Musgrove: Yeah, but it looks to me like you really don't need to be smoking.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Thanks to Sam, Austin, Gabrielle. Scott Lambert is thanked twice. See more »

Connections

Featured in The 74th Annual Academy Awards (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

I'm Your Man
(2001)
Performed by The Jayhawks
Written by The Jayhawks
Published by Abstinthe Music/Warner Tamerlane Publishing Co.
Courtesy of American Recordings
Produced by Asche & Spencer (as Asche and Spencer)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Outstanding Performances!
17 June 2002 | by (Ottawa, Ontario, Canada) – See all my reviews

"Monster's Ball" is presented by Director Marc Forster as a dark, dreary film-noir like drama involving the role of fate in bringing together two different but distraught people from different races.

The film opens as preparations are underway for the execution of Lawrence Musgrave (Sean Combs). Two of the prison guards are Hank (Billy Bob Thornton) and his son Sonny (Heath Ledger). Musgrave's wife Leticia (Halle Berry) and his obese son Tyrell (Coronji Calhoun) have come to see Musgrave to say their final goodbyes. Hank and Sonny live with the bigoted Buck who is Hank's father and who was also a prison guard. We learn that Buck has apparently bullied Hank all his life and now Hank is doing likewise to Sonny.

Following the execution, two tragic but unrelated events occur in the lives of Hank and Leticia. Hank, fighting off the predjudices taught him by his father, begins to fall for Leticia and eventually an inter-racial relationship ensues. But what if she finds out that Hank had a part in executing her husband?

Berry deservedly won the 2001 Academy Award as best actress for her role as the tragic Leticia. She displays a wide range of emotions from pity to sadness to dispare to ecstacy to happiness. Thornton is equally good as the similarly tragic Hank who goes through much of the same emotional changes. Peter Boyle is also excellent as the bigoted Buck. Ledger, in an all too brief role, shines as the son who really doesn't want to follow in his father's footsteps. Calhoun evokes pity and sorrow as Leticia's son and the old Puffmeister, Combs gives a good low key performance as the doomed convict.

An excellent film but be forewarned that there are a couple of graphic sex scenes in the movie. Definitely not for the kiddies.


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