6.7/10
1,528
15 user 19 critic

Lianna (1983)

A happily married woman comes to realize herself of being a repressed lesbian after she has an affair with a female college professor, and then tries to come to terms with her newfound lifestyle.

Director:

John Sayles

Writer:

John Sayles
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Linda Griffiths Linda Griffiths ... Lianna
Jane Hallaren ... Ruth
Jon DeVries Jon DeVries ... Dick
Jo Henderson Jo Henderson ... Sandy
Jessica MacDonald Jessica MacDonald ... Theda (as Jessica Wight MacDonald)
Jesse Solomon Jesse Solomon ... Spencer
John Sayles ... Jerry
Stephen Mendillo ... Bob
Betsy Julia Robinson Betsy Julia Robinson ... Cindy
Nancy Mette ... Kim
Maggie Renzi Maggie Renzi ... Sheila
Madelyn Coleman Madelyn Coleman ... Mrs. Hennessy
Robyn Reeves Robyn Reeves ... Job Applicant
Chris Elliott ... Lighting Assistant
Marta Renzi Marta Renzi ... Dancer
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Storyline

Lianna and her husband Dick have been married for a few years but the marriage isn't a happy one, since Dick treats her with arrogance. One day Lianna falls in love - with Ruth, a teacher. The people who know them act different: her husband with feelings of sexual betrayal, her children with curiosity and Lianna's friends with ambivalence. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was part of a breakthrough cycle of early 1980s movies featuring gay partnerships and drag characters. Others included Partners (1982), Cruising (1980), Victor Victoria (1982), Tootsie (1982), Personal Best (1982) and The World According to Garp (1982). See more »

Quotes

Lianna: I'm gay.
Sheila: I'm Sheila.
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Crazy Credits

The opening credits credit only the production company and the crew members. The cast is not credited until the end credits. The title of the film, LIANNA, appears as the last title card after John Sayles is credited as writer, producer, director and editor. See more »

Connections

References Charlie's Angels (1976) See more »

Soundtracks

Tonight
Written by Mason Daring
Performed by Janie Barnett
See more »

User Reviews

 
A Sayles masterpiece about the lesbian experience, far ahead of its time
24 October 2000 | by bj_luckySee all my reviews

John Sayles' ability to get you acquainted with his characters shines again in this study of a wife and mother who is coming to terms with her sexuality. Unlike the tawdry stories that focus solely on the sexual aspect of lesbian relationships, Sayles explores and reveals the complexity of discovering homosexual orientation - what it means to Lianna as her sexuality emerges from repression and what it means to her and others that she chooses to live truthfully with it.

There are some very rare vignettes in this film that bely what it is like to discover the attractiveness of women for the first time. Sayles does such a masterful job at portraying this process of discovery - it is joyful, playful, and exciting. These scenes remind me of Truffaut's "The Man Who Loved Women" (also badly remade in the USA, starring Burt Reynolds), but they seem to have a more natural depth and feel. Sayles' movies are typically populated with real characters, not posing movie stars. This film is true Sayles...so much is at stake for Lianna, and you are drawn into the aspects and dimensions of her life, the complexities and facets of the human sexual nature and of life in general, and what it means to come to terms with being gay.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 September 1983 (Netherlands) See more »

Also Known As:

Lianna, Um Amor Diferente See more »

Filming Locations:

New York, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$300,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$1,530,839

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,530,839
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Winwood Productions See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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