6.9/10
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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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Michael
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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
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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

Official Sites:

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Language:

Release Date:

21 November 2008 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Jardins da Noite  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,300,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,072, 9 November 2008, Limited Release
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

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Color:

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

Right Now
Written by Michael Jackson and Madlib (as Otis Jackson Jr.)
Performed by Oh No
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User Reviews

 
A little masterpiece
27 November 2008 | by See all my reviews

Relentlessly raw, authentic and sad: I hope that description doesn't drive you away because it is also brilliantly directed and intensely human, and there is a loving relationship at the center that lights it all up like the sun. A scene in an arcade where the two main characters are doing Dance Dance Revolution together had me weeping. Catch this one, however you can.

IMDb says I have to add more lines so I'll say that the casting is as good as casting gets -- one character after another is blazingly real. And the cameo by Malkovich does not feel like a gimmick: he's a genius, and therefore always welcome.


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