6.3/10
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The Human Stain (2003)

When a disgraced former college dean has a romance with a mysterious younger woman haunted by her dark, twisted past, he is forced to confront a shocking fact about his own life that he has kept secret for 50 years.

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Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)

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3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Lizan Mitchell ...
Ernestine
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Phyllis Newman ...
Iris Silk
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Psychologist
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Young Iris
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Storyline

The Human Stain is the story of Coleman Silk (Hopkins), a classics professor with a terrible secret that is about to shatter his life in a small New England town. When his affair with a young troubled janitor (Kidman) is uncovered, the secret Silk had harbored for over fifty years from his wife, his children and colleague, writer Nathan Zuckerman, fast explodes in a conflagration of devastating consequences. It is Zuckerman who stumbles upon Silk's secret and sets out to reconstruct the unknown biography of this eminent, upright man, esteemed as an educator for nearly all his life, and to understand how this ingeniously contrived life came unraveled. Written by lakeshoreentertainment.com

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

How far would you go to escape the past?


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

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Language:

Release Date:

31 October 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cloveski madez  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$839,170 (France) (31 October 2003)

Gross:

$5,381,227 (USA) (30 January 2004)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

To prepare for her role, Nicole Kidman visited women's shelters and talked to former victims of abuse for inspiration. See more »

Goofs

The camera used to tape the interview is a Sony PD-150, a camera that didn't exist in 1998. See more »

Quotes

Faunia Farley: [dancing provocatively] You're way too young for me. I need a man much older than you. At least 100. Know anyone in a wheelchair?
See more »

Connections

Featured in Nicole Kidman: An American Cinematheque Tribute (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

I Got It Bad and That Ain't Good
(1941)
Music by Duke Ellington
Lyrics by Paul Francis Webster (as Paul Webster)
Performed by The Oscar Peterson Trio
Courtesy of The Verve Music Group
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
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User Reviews

an engaging, charming film
25 November 2004 | by (london, england) – See all my reviews

The Human Stain is a film about an elderly retired middle-class university professor called Coleman (played by Anthony Hopkins) who begins a relationship with a troubled woman (played by Nicole Kidman) who leads a white-trash existence, and the effects it has on both of them. It also has the side plots (but very much intertwined) of the elderly man's friendship with a young writer (character name Zuckerman)and the young woman's ongoing troubles with her ex-husband.

I thought this was a lovely film - Anthony Hopkins is excellent and extremely convincing in this role, as were the characters of Farley (the ex-husband) & Zuckerman. The friendship particularly between Zuckerman and Coleman was extremely warm and charming. However, whilst Nicole Kidman's acting was very good, I remained unconvinced by the character that she played. Aside from this, I found the film extremely engaging and believable.


32 of 49 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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How can the professor be white while his 2 parents are black? Kyrios_Chalakatevakis
A film about race and class, dominated by rich white actors SaDaTay
Why did the girlfriend cried on the train? ionaradelima
Critics should be eating Crow SidneySassy
Zuckerman's past dbogosian-1
British accent jwhamann
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