6.7/10
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19 user 11 critic

Waterland (1992)

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Tom Crick, a high school history teacher, is having trouble connecting - with his class, with his wife. He ventures into telling his class stories about his young adulthood in the Fens ... See full summary »

Director:

Stephen Gyllenhaal

Writers:

Graham Swift (novel), Peter Prince (screenplay)
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1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jeremy Irons ... Tom Crick
Sinéad Cusack ... Mary Crick
Grant Warnock Grant Warnock ... Young Tom
Lena Headey ... Young Mary
Callum Dixon ... Freddie Parr
Sean Maguire ... Peter (as Sean McGuire)
Ross McCall ... Terry
Camilla Hebditch Camilla Hebditch ... Shirley
David Morrissey ... Dick Crick
John Heard ... Lewis Scott
Maggie Gyllenhaal ... Maggie Ruth
Ethan Hawke ... Matthew Price
Cara Buono ... Judy Dobson
Pete Postlethwaite ... Henry Crick (as Peter Postlethwaite)
Stewart Richman Stewart Richman ... Ernest Atkinson
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Storyline

Tom Crick, a high school history teacher, is having trouble connecting - with his class, with his wife. He ventures into telling his class stories about his young adulthood in the Fens district in England. The emotional wounds from his younger life wash over him in present day, affecting his work and his relationships with his students and his wife. Written by Martin Lewison <milst1@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Mystery

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexuality and language, and for an abortion scene | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 October 1992 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Das Geheimnis seiner Liebe See more »

Filming Locations:

East Anglia, England, UK See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$1,034,287
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Miranda Richardson was originally intended for the role of Mary. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Tom Crick: Once upon a time, children, there was a history teacher who came home one day, after giving a class on the French Revolution, to find that his wife, the woman he loved since they were children, had herself committed a revolutionary, a miraculous act.
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User Reviews

Surreal, poingnant and mostly good
14 October 1999 | by DaCritic-2See all my reviews

Jeremy Irons, everybody's favorite morose Englishman, plays a high school teacher who basically has a nervous breakdown (more like a meltdown) in class; and over the course of several class sessions, tells his pupils his own life story, growing up in rural England in the post-war years. This includes his high school sweetheart, to whom he is married, and his mentally retarded older brother.

The movie consistently takes turns for the weird. The teacher's wife has a habit of snatching unattended babies and bringing them home; we learn that she is unable to have children, but the reason for this is not revealed until a climactic scene that some viewers may find very difficult and painful to watch.

The teacher actually brings his students, physically, into the setting of the story at one point ... there they are, walking around, looking at things... a class field trip into the teacher's past. A very young Ethan Hawke plays a troublesome student who connects with Jereme's character by the end of the story.

Most of the surrealistic elements work well, others are just ... odd. For example, at one point, Jeremy Irons' character pauses in the middle of his narrative, because one of his female students who is sitting at a desk in the classroom is completely naked. Okay ... maybe there was supposed to be some kind of symbolism behind this image, but it seemed a little gratuitous.

Overall, I'd have to give it **** of *****.


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