The daughter of a brilliant but mentally disturbed mathematician, recently deceased, tries to come to grips with her possible inheritance: his insanity. Complicating matters are one of her father's ex-students who wants to search through his papers and her estranged sister who shows up to help settle his affairs.
'Heights' follows five characters over 24 hours on a fall day in New York City. Isabel, a photographer, is having second thoughts about her upcoming marriage to Jonathan, a lawyer. On the same day, Isabel's mother Diana learns that her husband has a new lover and begins to re-think her life choices and her open marriage. Diana and Isabel's paths cross with Alec, a young actor, and with Peter, a journalist. As the interrelated stories proceed, the connections between the lives of the five characters begin to reveal themselves and their stories unravel. Isabel, Jonathan, Diana, Alec, and Peter must choose what kind of lives they will lead before the sun comes up on the next day. Written by
Sujit R. Varma
The poem that Diana lovingly recites to Isabel when they are sitting on the steps near the end of the movie is from Edgar Allan Poe's "Annabel Lee," with Diana substituting "Isabel" for "Annabel." Eight lines are spoken from the poem, but not in order they were written: I was a child and she was a child, In this kingdom by the sea: But we loved with a love that was more than love - I and my Annabel Lee. For the moon never beams without bringing me dreams Of the beautiful Annabel Lee; And the stars never rise but I feel the bright eyes Of the beautiful Annabel Lee. See more »
Correction for Alec and Isabel leaving the building in the beginning of the film. Alec did not came out of a door, he exited the elevator with his dog. See more »
And I am ashamed too, because the first thing I thought when I just saw you was thank you for my way out.
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The producers with to thank The Staff at Blue Rock ... See more »
Heights is, at its most basic, an exploration of desires. The characters around whom the movie revolves think they know, at the beginning, where they're headed, what will happen to them, what they want to happen to them. But as the movie progresses, their certainties are challenged and sometimes swept away entirely, and their carefully constructed lives begin to unravel.
Glenn Close is Diana, a brilliant 40-something Shakespearean actress and somewhat irresponsible mother. Her open marriage once seemed like a terrific idea--have your fun on the side, have a loving husband at home--but as her "loving husband" becomes more and more deeply involved with another woman, she begins to realize just how unfulfilling that philosophy is.
Diana's daughter is played by Elizabeth Banks, in a very Scarlett Johanssen-esquire role. Isabel is a struggling photographer who makes ends meet by taking wedding pictures, while still trying to pursue a more serious career. Her second thoughts begin to appear when her upcoming wedding to Jonathan becomes an obstacle to a once-in-a-lifetime chance to use her talent. Jonathan himself has a past he's desperate to hide, potentially ruinous secrets he's working to keep from his wife-to-be.
The situations are strung together by the existence of a never-seen photographer named Benjamin Stone, who is scheduled for an exhibition in a few weeks. A man named Peter, who we are given to understand is Benjamin's current flame, is tracking down his previous models (and incidentally, lovers) to compile his memoirs. His work loosely ties in the rest of the characters, providing some structure to the interlocking plot lines.
This movie has the power and appeal that you generally find in beautiful films about unhappy people. No matter how happy or hopeful you find the ending, it's still a bit of a downer, because of the raw exposure of the characters. There are uncomfortable moments when we're privy to deep-seated emotions and unsettling situations, but there are also remarkably tender moments. The acting is generally understated and simple, with a few intense moments--your basic fare from a character study movie. But the adaptation from stage to screen, though apparent, is nearly seamless, and the text translates well to film.
Highly recommended to fans of Closer and similar movies.
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