6.7/10
1,313
8 user 18 critic

Speaking Parts (1989)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 27 July 1990 (Netherlands)
A struggling actor's job as a hotel custodian is a front for his real job: being rented out as a gigolo by his supervisor. A co-worker is obsessed with him, but he ignores and avoids her. ... See full summary »

Director:

Atom Egoyan

Writer:

Atom Egoyan
Reviews
1 win & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael McManus ... Lance
Arsinée Khanjian ... Lisa
Gabrielle Rose ... Clara
Tony Nardi ... Eddy
David Hemblen ... Producer
Patricia Collins ... Housekeeper
Gerard Parkes ... Father
Jacqueline Samuda ... Bride (as Jackie Samuda)
Peter Krantz Peter Krantz ... Groom
Patrick Tierney Patrick Tierney ... Eddy's colleague at video store
Robert Dodds Robert Dodds ... Doctor
Leszek Lis Leszek Lis ... Friend of the Housekeeper
Sharon Corder Sharon Corder ... Hotel Manager (voice)
David MacKay David MacKay ... Man at the Party
Teresa Hunt Teresa Hunt ... Women at the Party
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Storyline

A struggling actor's job as a hotel custodian is a front for his real job: being rented out as a gigolo by his supervisor. A co-worker is obsessed with him, but he ignores and avoids her. He leaves his acting resume in the hotel room of a screenwriter, who is casting for a TV movie based on the true story of her deceased brother. She hires him to play the lead and the two begin an affair. She becomes increasingly distraught as it becomes evident that the movie's producer is changing her story. Egoyan's trademark tangle of bizarre relationships surrounds the protagonists on their way to a mind-blowing conclusion. A hypnotic, fascinating film.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Love - Passion - Obsession

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Connections

References Angels Die Hard (1970) See more »

User Reviews

Not a movie to be merely watched
12 August 2002 | by StormBornSee all my reviews

Speaking Parts is not a movie to be merely watched; it must be engaged, just as the main characters (Lance, Lisa and Clara) must choose to engage their lives rather than just watch. At first, watching or being watched is all: Lance seems to exist only as others view him. Clara watches and rewatches a video of her dead brother. Lisa watches Lance any way she can--at work, through renting his movies over and over and watching only his scenes, even watching him do his laundry.

"Words aren't everything," says Lisa, but as beautiful as these look-alike protagonists are, it is the non-beautiful ones around them who have power over them--the power of words. Only when Lance shatters his objective perfection by screaming the one word in the movie that comes truly from himself does he become a real person.

Egoyan's mastery shows in his tight control; every scene, every prop, every movement and gesture reinforces his bleak and nearly-silent vision. Although McManus (Lance) has said that he approached working with Egoyan as "an employee," his talent is showcased in his use of expression and body language to portray the powerful/powerless object of desire and fantasy. Striking images abound, as they must in a film about image, about the relationship between object and subject, between viewed and viewer: Lance facedown in a waste of white sheets, wrists crossed over his head as if bound; Lisa reaching out to touch Lance as if revulsed by him; the similarity in looks between the mute-and-powerless (all beautiful brunettes) and the banal-but-powerful (all bland and blond).


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Details

Country:

Canada | UK | Italy

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 July 1990 (Netherlands) See more »

Also Known As:

Guiones cambiados See more »

Filming Locations:

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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Box Office

Budget:

CAD350,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,934, 19 February 1990

Gross USA:

$76,609

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$76,609
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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