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In the Realms of the Unreal (2004)

Unrated  |   |  Documentary, Biography  |  29 March 2008 (Japan)
7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 1,672 users   Metascore: 74/100
Reviews: 36 user | 51 critic | 20 from Metacritic.com

A documentary on Henry Darger, visionary artist, janitor, and novelist.

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Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 2 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Henry Darger (voice)
...
Narrator / Vivian Girls (voice)
Frier McCollister ...
Additional Voice (voice)
...
Additional Voice (voice)
Janice Hong ...
Additional Voice (voice)
Ruby McCollister ...
Additional Voice (voice)
Paul Robert Langdon ...
Additional Voice (voice)
Mary O'Donnell ...
Herself - Neighbor
Kiyoko Lerner ...
Herself - Landlady
Mary Rooney ...
Herself - Parish Bookkeeper
David Berglund ...
Himself - Neighbor
Regina Waters ...
Herself - Neighbor
Mark Waters ...
Himself - Neighbor
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Henry Darger ...
Himself (photos)
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Storyline

Henry Darger worked all his life in menial jobs in Chicago. Living alone and in poverty, he had no friends or close family. Spending all his off hours alone, he whiled away the hours working on a 15,000 page illustrated novel called The Realms of the Unreal. A stunning amalgam of religious imagery, fantasy, and heroic drama, the work was only discovered after Darger was moved to a hospital during the last days of his life. Darger also wrote journals and an autobiography. The documentary uses interviews with Darger's neighbors and narration of passages from his works, along with his illustrations, to explore the mind and work of Henry Darger. Written by Ken Miller <wkmiller704@yahoo.com>

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Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

29 March 2008 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

In the Realms of the Unreal: The Mystery of Henry Darger  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$15,477 (USA) (24 December 2004)

Gross:

$413,708 (USA) (10 June 2005)
 »

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Did You Know?

Quotes

[last lines]
[end title cards]
Title Card: After Darger's death in 1973, the Lerners decided to share their discovery of his work, preserving his room and its contents.
Title Card: Since then, Henry Darger's work has been exhibited and collected worldwide. His art has inspired the creation of paintings, poetry, music, and works in theatre, dance, and opera.
Title Card: The room was dismantled in 2000.
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Soundtracks

Innocent When You Dream (78)
Written by Tom Waits
Used by permission of Jalma Music (ASCAP)
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User Reviews

 
Enter the realms of the unreal!!
22 January 2005 | by (Elmwood Park, IL) – See all my reviews

This was a very impressive documentary. Although it was different from the films I generally go to see, I remained interested in Henry Darger's life throughout the whole movie. He was portrayed as quite an interesting person. As a child, he is taken to an asylum and thought to be insane. When he finally escapes this life, he becomes a janitor and later, a part of the army. His neighbors play an important role in the movie because they describe his personality and what they knew about him. It was interesting to hear each perspective. Much of what they had to say about him was the same, but some of it varied at least through word choice which I felt was significant because it revealed each of their attitudes toward who they thought he was. Henry Darger's artwork was amazing. The illustrations of the Vivian sisters provided insight into his eyes. The most impressive thing was how the lives of these girls seemed to represent his life and feelings toward it. If you are interested in learning something, I encourage you to see, "In the Realms of the Unreal."


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