30 user 27 critic

The Adjuster (1991)

R | | Comedy, Drama | July 1992 (USA)
2:06 | Trailer
A reflection about what makes everyone's life unique, through the story of Noah's family. Noah is an adjuster, having sex with his customers. His wife Hera watches pornographic movies for ... See full summary »


Atom Egoyan


Atom Egoyan
5 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Elias Koteas ... Noah
Arsinée Khanjian ... Hera
Maury Chaykin ... Bubba
Gabrielle Rose ... Mimi
Jennifer Dale ... Arianne
David Hemblen ... Bert - The Head Censor
Rose Sarkisyan Rose Sarkisyan ... Seta - Hera's Sister
Armen Kokorian Armen Kokorian ... Simon - Hera's Child
Jacqueline Samuda ... Louise - The Maid
Gerard Parkes ... Tim
Patricia Collins ... Lorraine
Don McKellar ... Tyler - The Young Censor
John Gilbert John Gilbert ... The Doctor
Stephen Ouimette ... Larry - The Butterfly Collector
Raoul Max Trujillo ... Matthew - His Lover (as Raoul Trujillo)


A reflection about what makes everyone's life unique, through the story of Noah's family. Noah is an adjuster, having sex with his customers. His wife Hera watches pornographic movies for the Board of Censors. They live with their son Simon and Hera's sister in a show-flat. One day, they meet Bubba, who wants to make a movie in their house. Written by Yepok

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


In search of relative comfort... See more »


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sensuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Atom Egoyan came up with the idea for the film when his family's home burned down as a child. He was fascinated by how much his family was forced to depend upon the insurance adjuster, who was just a stranger to them otherwise. See more »


Bubba: So many places you see, you wouldn't think twice about, they pass right through you. And then, for no reason, you can see a house, and find yourself wondering, what is going on inside of those walls.
See more »


Featured in J.C. (2001) See more »


Look Here My Dear
by Jivan Gasparyan (as Djivan Gasparian)
from the album "I Will Not Be Sad In This World"
© Opal Music/VAAP 1989
(p) 1989 Opal Ltd./Warner Bros. Records Inc.
See more »

User Reviews

A mysterious and hysterically dark tale of modernity
7 August 2005 | by nini_tenSee all my reviews

To respond to a previous review that wrote that the fact that the censor wife tapes porn from work to show her sister since they share everything together isn't convincing---in the film the wife explains to her boss that she shared what she learned from school to her sister because she couldn't go to school, and that it is like that from where they're from. Egoyan didn't specify where they were from, but it is Armenia. The way I see it, I am convinced because it is a matter of culture and family in a more depraved country, and I got it immediately, and the fact isn't that the sisters' bond is strange, but like the wife said, it is like that where she comes from. To me, the movie is an extreme dramatization of a man too involved in his work, which in the end destroys his life and family in a climate of heightened modernity and an inevitable air of danger. In one of the film's most gruesome scenes, a man is masturbating outside the glass slide doors of the living room at night while the wife's sister is watching one of the taped porn movies. In another scene, the "filmmaker" greets the family and gives them each an identical jacket, designed like tacky franchises sold in amusement parks. There's a certain vulnerability about the way the family members take the jacket, as if the scene is trying to express an awkward sorrow about mass franchise and how it's crudely threw at people and families. What I found very, very amused and surprised by is how throughout the film I expected, in the end, the obscene couple to be exposed to the family then shame and explanation could to be provided as punishment for their deceit and nightmarish violation---but when the husband finally confronts the "filmmaker" while he is about to burn down his living room, he is shown as simply, understandably, INSANE.

Their are certain unnecessary or unsubtle little spots of ambiguity in the film such as the wife's prior, semi-romantic encounter with her foot specialist on the subway, but then again, such details and the film's insistence in unpurifying EVERY relationship the adjuster has with his clients has its own reasons and means of defining and exposing the main characters that enhances the environment of robbed values the film so determinedly tries to create. Atom Egoyan stands out as a filmmaker of "ideas", and in this film as well as most of his images/pace/style express a lyrical modernity through a rich and mysterious vision. He is the most interesting provocateur.

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Release Date:

July 1992 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A kárbecslő See more »

Filming Locations:

Ontario, Canada See more »


Box Office


CAD1,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$10,686, 31 May 1992

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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