Good Fences (2003)

TV Movie  |  R  |   |  Comedy, Drama  |  2 February 2003 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.6/10 from 470 users  
Reviews: 20 user | 1 critic

Good Fences is about an upwardly mobile black family for whom the American dream becomes a nightmare. Set in the 1970s, Tom Spader is an attorney who is determined to end what he has dubbed... See full summary »


(as Ernest Dickerson)


(novel), (teleplay)
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2 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
Tom Spader
Mabel Spader
Zachary Simmons Glover ...
Tommy-Two (age 17)
Ruth Crisp
Stormy (age 17)
Ashley Archer ...
Stormy (age 13)
Marie V. Cruz ...
Mrs. Suziharo (as Marie Cruz)
Vincent McCurdy-Clark ...
Tommy-Two (age 12)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Governor's Wife (as Alex Amini)
Barbara Barnes-Hopkins ...
Mabel's Mother
Tina (as Marlyne Afflack)
Tom Spader (as Matthew Brown)
Sylvia Falcon
Dustin Cass ...
Tom - age 10


Good Fences is about an upwardly mobile black family for whom the American dream becomes a nightmare. Set in the 1970s, Tom Spader is an attorney who is determined to end what he has dubbed "the colored man's losing streak." When his winning of a high-profile case thrusts him into the limelight, he decides to moves his wife and their two kids out of their mixed lower-middle-class town and into the posh enclave of Greenwich, Connecticut. Written by Patrick Spreng

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


In Greenwich, no one can hear you scream.


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexuality, some language and violence | See all certifications »




Release Date:

2 February 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Au-delà des barrières  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Did You Know?


In one of the scenes where the family is gathered in front of the TV, the daughter, Stormy, is seen reading a magazine. On both the cover and the back cover of the magazine there is a clearly recognizable picture of supermodel Claudia Schiffer (active from 1988 on). The scene was supposed to be taking place around the time of the first airing of the TV series "Roots" - 1977. See more »


References Barnaby Jones (1973) See more »

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User Reviews

Much better movie than the score says
28 December 2012 | by (Bucharest, Romania) – See all my reviews

I think the problem is the movie is presented as a comedy-including the poster- when in fact it's quite dramatic towards the end. The actors give a great performance and the whole surrealistic atmosphere is well created by the music and the rhythm to make us feel whoopi's character retreat as she doesn't fit in her new lifestyle. Whoopi is much better in this kind of movies, away from simple comedies, and this one is like the other side of "The Color Purple". Danny Glover is also very credible as a person with terrible contradictions, in pursuit of a better life. Sure, the flashbacks and other explanations are redundant, but I think it's quite a good movie. The title? Maybe good fences are actually designed to keep people isolated from each other, instead of helping them to be good neighbors.

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