7.2/10
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63 user 36 critic

Children of a Lesser God (1986)

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A new speech teacher at a school for the deaf falls in love with the janitor, a deaf woman speechless by choice.

Director:

Randa Haines

Writers:

Mark Medoff (stage play), Hesper Anderson (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Won 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
William Hurt ... James
Marlee Matlin ... Sarah
Piper Laurie ... Mrs. Norman
Philip Bosco ... Dr. Curtis Franklin
Allison Gompf Allison Gompf ... Lydia
John F. Cleary John F. Cleary ... Johnny
Philip Holmes Philip Holmes ... Glen
Georgia Ann Cline Georgia Ann Cline ... Cheryl
William D. Byrd William D. Byrd ... Danny
Frank Carter Jr. Frank Carter Jr. ... Tony
John Limnidis John Limnidis ... William
Bob Hiltermann ... Orin
E. Katherine Kerr ... Mary Lee Ochs
John Basinger John Basinger ... Alan Jones
Barry Magnani Barry Magnani ... Tom Schuyler
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Storyline

James is a new speech teacher at a school for the deaf. He falls for Sarah, a pupil who decided to stay on at the school rather than venture into the big bad world. She shuns him at first, refusing to read his lips and only using signs. Will her feelings change over time? Written by Colin Tinto <cst@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A love beyond words. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Release Date:

31 October 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Te amaré en silencio See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,909,084, 5 October 1986, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$31,853,080
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A dispute erupted between actress Marlee Matlin and director Randa Haines over whether Matlin should have to smoke in the film. Matlin didn't want to but Haines stipulated she had to start practicing smoking two months prior to shooting. Matlin defied this and did not start smoking until about one week prior to the start of filming. See more »

Goofs

The DVD back lists a main character as "John" Leeds, when the name should be "JAMES" Leeds. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Dr. Curtis Franklin: This is the most amazing résumé I've ever seen.
James Leeds: I've been with some really good schools. The best.
Dr. Curtis Franklin: All of them. All of the best. One right after another. You've also been with the Lucky Erin Bar and Grill.
James Leeds: Pittsburgh. Bartender.
Dr. Curtis Franklin: And a disc jockey.
James Leeds: Yeah, that was in Oklahoma. I used to broadcast in sign language.
Dr. Curtis Franklin: You've covered all the map, Mr. Leeds.
James Leeds: I've got a lot of energy.
Dr. Curtis Franklin: I'm sure you do have a lot of energy and a lot of new ideas. I did too when...
[...]
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Connections

Referenced in Saturday Night Live: Bill Murray/Percy Sledge (1987) See more »

Soundtracks

Isn't It Romantic
by Lorenz Hart & Richard Rodgers
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User Reviews

Beautiful and Touching
2 April 2004 | by Spud-38See all my reviews

Hollywood is full of overly wrought love stories in which the conflict seems contrived merely to create drama or comedy or both. In Children of a Lesser God the love is so simple, and the conflict so believable, that it feels less like watching a movie, and more like watching friends walk through their own personal story. The attraction between Matlin and Hurt is obvious, but genuine, and is filled with the kind of "touches" that make it feel real. It is also a visually beautiful film. Each shot is set like a still photographer capturing an image. The overwhelming beauty of the New Brunswick coast creates a background for the film that leaves one with the feeling of watching a moving painting. Matlin has unfortunately not since been offered anything near this piece in which to display her amazing talent. It is a shame that a woman who could stand alongside Katherine Hepburn and Jodie Foster as all time great actresses is not having the opportunity to display that talent because of her hearing disability.


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