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Speak (2004)

 -  Drama  -  20 January 2004 (USA)
7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 17,311 users  
Reviews: 88 user | 12 critic

After a blurred trauma over the summer, Melinda enters high school a selective mute. Struggling with school, friends, and family, she tells the dark tale of her experiences, and why she has chosen not to speak.

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(novel), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Joyce Sordino
Dick Hagerman ...
School Bus Driver
...
Heather
Remy Brommer ...
Yearbook Photographer (as A. Remy Brommer)
...
Grace Ameter ...
Emily
Tyanna Rolley ...
Nicole
Leslie Lyles ...
Hairwoman
...
...
Kimberly Kish ...
Ms. Keen
Megan Pillar ...
Ivy
...
...
Jack Sordino
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Storyline

The young adolescent Melinda Sordino arrives at high school feeling confused, depressed and alone. Her school peers call her "squealer", because she alerted the police during a summer party after she was sexually assaulted by Andy Evans. She refuses to tell anyone the events that took place. Her depression and distance from people is made worse by the increasingly large gap between her and her parents. She finds great support with her art teacher Mr. Freeman and her school friend David Petrakis. Her feelings threaten to engulf her but Melinda learns to grow from her experiences instead of repressing the past emotions that have scarred her for the rest of her life. Written by Andrew Rodriguez, Tinton Falls New Jersey

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Truth Will Change Everything.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material involving a teen rape | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 January 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Beszélj!  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Kristen Stewart's first Sundance Film Festival selection. See more »

Goofs

The mashed potatoes thrown on Melinda's shirt changes between shots. When we first see it, the spot is large and the next time we see it, it's smaller and more flat. See more »

Quotes

Melinda Sordino: [writing in bathroom stall] Exchange students are ruining our country.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Awkward.: Pilot (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Stand Clear
Written by Sara Shaoul
Performed by The Recorder Club
Produced by Matt Rocker
Used with permission
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Contribution to Society
1 February 2004 | by (Park City) – See all my reviews

I can react to this movie on a number of levels. First of all, it is a wonderful thing that this film was made. It deals with a very real yet very troubling issue, and handles it with sensitivity and hope. This movie has the potential to really help people, and I can't think of a better legacy for a filmmaker.

Despite all that, I wish this would have been a better movie. The pacing of the story seemed wildly out of whack and there were a couple of directorial decisions that could certainly be questioned. On the other hand, Kristen Stewart's performance in the lead role of Melinda was excellent, although the rest of the acting left me flat. (Even Steve Zahn, who I normally love, seemed a bit miscast.) And while the writing didn't grab me, there were enough light-hearted moments to make Melinda's personal anguish bearable for the audience.

Beyond cinema as therapy, the film contained meaningful insights into the potential of artistic expression in healing, the general alienation of being a freshman in high school, or the critical relationship of an individual's will and determination with the healing process. People should see this movie not because of its cinematic excellence but because it has an important and optimistic message.


24 of 37 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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