6.3/10
26,303
218 user 121 critic

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.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)

Watch Now

From $1.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Birthday Girl (2001)
Comedy | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A thirtysomething bank clerk from St Albans has his small-town life exploded by the arrival of his Russian mail-order bride.

Director: Jez Butterworth
Stars: Nicole Kidman, Vincent Cassel, Ben Chaplin
Birth (2004)
Drama | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A young boy attempts to convince a woman that he is her dead husband reborn.

Director: Jonathan Glazer
Stars: Nicole Kidman, Cameron Bright, Lauren Bacall
Instinct (1999)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

When a noted anthropologist who left society to live in the jungle is imprisoned for murder, it's up to a young psychiatrist to get through to him.

Director: Jon Turteltaub
Stars: Anthony Hopkins, Cuba Gooding Jr., Donald Sutherland
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Political intrigue and deception unfold inside the United Nations, where a U.S. Secret Service agent is assigned to investigate an interpreter who overhears an assassination plot.

Director: Sydney Pollack
Stars: Nicole Kidman, Sean Penn, Catherine Keener
Edit

Cast

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

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:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

|

Country:

| |

Language:

Release Date:

31 October 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cloveski madez  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

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

Gross:

$5,381,227 (USA) (30 January 2004)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Second collaboration between Nicole Kidman and director Robert Benton, the first being Billy Bathgate (1991). By the time of release, he was the only filmmaker to have directed with her twice. 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

Steena Paulsson: I want to spend my life with you.
Young Coleman Silk: What are you doing Sunday?
See more »

Connections

References The Manchurian Candidate (1962) See more »

Soundtracks

Sleepy Lagoon
(1940)
Music by Eric Coates
Lyrics by Jack Lawrence (uncredited)
Performed by Tommy Dorsey
Courtesy of Soundies Inc.
By Arrangement with De Pugh Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A Near Perfect Film
20 August 2004 | by (Olathe, KS, USA) – See all my reviews

I honestly can not think of a single thing wrong with this movie. The actors are top rate actors that consistently turn in exceptional performances. This movie is no exception.

The plot is intriguing. The pasts of the main protagonists unfold, making their characters exceptionally deep. We get to see these characters evolve in interesting and compelling ways. There are shades-of-grey in these characters. We don't have the perfect hero. We have gentle people with kind hearts who make mistakes.

The direction is perfectly understated. There is a lot of nuance in the way the scenes are filmed and the way in which the actors are framed. Instead of the love scenes being the all-to-familiar humping and groaning, these scenes are filmed without graphic nudity. Note the way in which Anthony Hopkins places his hands on Nicole Kidman's back. It is so loving and tender and intimate.

Even the editing is right on. The length of the film, at 106 minutes, is the perfect length. There are no wasted scenes.

Some of the material is hard to watch. Note the posture and the facial expression on Anthony Hopkins in the kitchen scene in which Nicole Kidman is giving him a hard time. It is subtle and painful to watch.

If you are into light-hearted escapist film, this isn't for you. The subject matter is deep and difficult. I like these kinds of movies and this one is one of the best in class.

Kudos to all involved with this film.


141 of 177 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?