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Changeling (2008)

R  |   |  Drama, History, Mystery  |  31 October 2008 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 189,634 users   Metascore: 63/100
Reviews: 380 user | 258 critic | 38 from Metacritic.com

A grief-stricken mother takes on the LAPD to her own detriment when it stubbornly tries to pass off an obvious impostor as her missing child, while also refusing to give up hope that she will find him one day.


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Title: Changeling (2008)

Changeling (2008) on IMDb 7.8/10

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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 11 wins & 44 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Antonia Bennett ...
Ben Harris
Girl on Tricycle
Madison Hodges ...
Neighborhood Girl
Devon Conti ...
Man at Diner


Los Angeles, 1928. A single mother returns from work to find her nine-year-old son gone. She calls the LAPD to initiate a search. Five months later, a boy is found in Illinois who fits the description; he says he's her son. To fanfare and photos, the LAPD reunite mother and son, but she insists he's not her boy. The cops dismiss her as either a liar or hysterical. When she joins a minister in his public criticism of the police, they in turn use government power to silence and intimidate her. Meanwhile, a cop goes to a dilapidated ranch to find a Canadian lad who's without legal status; the youth tells a grisly tale. There's redress for murder; is there redress for abuse of power? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

boy | police | lapd | telephone | train | See All (287) »


To find her son, she did what no one else dared.

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some violent and disturbing content, and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

31 October 2008 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El sustituto  »

Box Office


$55,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$489,015 (USA) (24 October 2008)


£4,693,773 (UK) (2 January 2009)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


| (opening and end sequence)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Angelina Jolie's character towards the end of the film tells her boss that she's betting on It Happened One Night (1934) to win against Cleopatra (1934). In 2015, Jolie herself is reportedly working on a film version on Cleopatra. See more »


As Christine steps on the train to go see Gordon Northcott in prison, two blasts from a diesel locomotive "horn" can be heard. Trains at the time were equipped with steam locomotives which have a very distinctly different "whistle" sound from that of a diesel locomotive "horn". See more »


[first lines]
Christine Collins: Walter, honey. Time to wake up.
Walter Collins: Just ten more minutes...
Christine Collins: Sorry, sport. You can sleep in tomorrow, that's what Saturdays are for.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The black-and-white Universal logo used in the 1940s opens the film. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

And the Oscar goes to...
16 January 2009 | by (Iceland) – See all my reviews

…Angelina Jolie, for outstanding performance in Changeling.

Wow, I think I need to calm down a bit. I was skeptic at first to see this movie but I don't regret spending 900 króna's (I'm from Iceland so that's very expensive) on a movie ticket to see the best movie I've seen in a long time. And I encourage everyone to do the same, go see Changeling.

This movie has everything; a terrific story based on true events, outstanding acting from everyone of the cast, excitement, tears, blood and it holds you tight until the end. And I won't forget the magic behind the camera provided by the genius Clint Eastwood.

Angelina's character is terrific and she fights, what seems to be at first a lost fight, for her son in a world controlled by men. You learn to hate some characters in the movie and love others. You learn to feel for Angelina's character and hope the movie ends well. Changeling will make you cry and when you walk out of the theater after this fantastic film you feel both good and satisfied.

Angelina was so good and convincing in this movie that I could not believe my own eyes and ears. And John Malkovich was very good too but Angelina is the rock of this movie. She carries it on her shoulders and Clint Eastwood directs her like...like...I don't know what to write anymore, I'm still calming down. I'm going to stop now and finish the review with these two sentences: If Angelina Jolie gets an Oscar nomination for her acting she deserves to win. Just go see Changeling and Angelina's acting will blow your mind.

109 of 156 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Axe scene....a step to far? sarahparsons334
Why is it called changeling? charlimcbean
There is nothing reasonable or credible in this film. danieligarza
The Music is Crap hermanowen-1
One missing thing that would have cleared things up david-seerup
The boy saying the police told him to say he was Walter zackayotte
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