7.0/10
3,564
22 user 28 critic

Gardens of the Night (2008)

R | | Drama | 21 November 2008 (USA)
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After being abducted as children, and suffering years of abuse, a teenage boy and girl find themselves living on the street.

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3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Leslie
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Michael
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Young Leslie
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Alex
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Frank
Jermaine Scooter Smith ...
Young Donnie (as Jermaine 'Scooter' Smith)
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Orlando
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Jimmy
Raynold Gideon ...
Judge Feeney
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Mrs. Feeney
Natalie May ...
Judge's Daughter
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Pa
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Ma
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Donnie
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Blackberry John
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Storyline

An 8-year-old girl is taken from her home and convinced that her family does not want her anymore. After enduring years of horror, she and her fellow victim are dumped by their capturers. Now, 17 years old and no one to turn to except each other, they do their best to survive life on the streets, until one day she finally accepts the help of a shelter counselor to find her way home. However, what she truly finds is the love of her life and that you can never go back. "Gardens of the Night", is a haunting, gritty and topical story which delves deep into the world of child abduction and where it often leads... for the "lucky ones." The writer/director, Damian Harris bases his story on the kids, counselors, cops and pimps he met during two years of research. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for disturbing content involving sexual exploitation of a child, language, sexual content and some drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

21 November 2008 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Jardins da Noite  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,300,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In an interview with Filmmaker Magazine director Damien Harris said that since they couldn't tell the child actors what the story was actually about, they came up with an alternative story. It was that Alex (Tom Arnold) had been left by his wife and so he was living alone with Frank (Kevin Zegers), his good buddy, and he wanted a family so these two kids would become his children. There was not going to be a mother, because the mother had left. Frank was now jealous because he thought that he wasn't Alex's favorite anymore, so that's why he was being mean. Then for the specific scenes with Leslie (Ryan Simpkins), they came up with a scenario that fitted emotionally where she had to be, so they didn't have to tell her anything beyond that. Harris came up with that version of the story with the Ryan Simpkin's mother. See more »

Quotes

Young Leslie: [first lines - reading] The marsh ended in a broad plain where the light twinkled. It was a long time since Mowgli had concerned himself with the doings of men. "I will look", he said, "and I will see how far the Man-Pack has changed." The door of the hut opened, and a woman stood peering into the darkness. "Who calls?", said the woman, a quiver in her voice. "Have you forgotten?", said Mowgli. His throat was dry as he spoke.
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Soundtracks

Dreaming My Way Back Home
Written and Performed by Jody Reynolds
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User Reviews

 
Tom, Kevin, Gillian, Jeremy, and John Make a Horror Film
12 February 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I can't believe I got through this film, first of all, because that little blond angel of an actress that played little Leslie made the evil of the subject matter all the more horrific. Tom Arnold was brilliant, and had me feeling sorry for his character. Kevin Zegers was convincing as Tom's "turned" accomplice, dark and damaged. Jeremy Sisto was so creepy I cannot forget his sleazy grin as he offered a "discount" to Tom.

Gillian's eyes said it all. What a great actress this girl is. Such dead eyes. And John Malkovich as a good guy...just enough to keep me off balance.

All the actors in this film gave stunning performances about a very distasteful subject: broad daylight abductions of children, the business of child pornography, and the murdering of innocent souls.

There was never going to be a happy ending to this movie, and it took courage to make this film knowing that nobody is going to watch it twice, unless they're perverted; or recommend it to their friends. However, everyone needs to recommend it to anyone they know who has children. Because evil is cunning.

I will never be the same.


9 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Any other survivors of sexual abuse find it... comforting? tutorwife93
One thing I didn't get.. SamMerlotte
So hard to watch! My advice; avoid at all costs! ebc1973
Is Tom Arnold Oscar-worthy? Corndogg-5
Why do they always case beauty queens as abuse victims? Its not realist andrew-i-sindler
Gilian was too pretty to play the older Leslie?! What?! LexRox
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