5.9/10
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16 user 14 critic

The Substance of Fire (1996)

R | | Drama | 14 March 1997 (USA)
Trailer
1:40 | Trailer
Publishing magnate refuses to publish a book by his son's male lover so the kids buy out their father and run it themselves!

Director:

Daniel J. Sullivan

Writers:

Jon Robin Baitz (play), Jon Robin Baitz (screenplay)
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tony Goldwyn ... Aaron Geldhart
Benjamin Ungar Benjamin Ungar ... Young Isaac Geldhart
Timothy Hutton ... Martin Geldhart
Tom McDermott ... Old Printer
Sarah Jessica Parker ... Sarah Geldhart
George Morfogen George Morfogen ... Otto the printer
Ron Rifkin ... Isaac Geldhart
Lee Grant ... Cora Cahn
Andrew Pang ... Mr. Otani jr
Edmund Ikeda Edmund Ikeda ... Mr. Otani sr
Elizabeth Franz ... Miss Barzakian
Gil Bellows ... Val Chenard
Eric Bogosian ... Gene Byck
Ronny Graham ... Louis Foukold
John Sullivan John Sullivan ... Stewart
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Storyline

Isaac Geldhart is a Holocaust survivor who, overcome by grief at the recent death of his wife, seems determined to run his publishing firm into the ground by printing books that have no hope of financial success. His son Aaron, who also works at the company, grows frustrated with Isaac's emotional decline and attempts to take over the firm. The resulting crisis involves Isaac's other two children, his daughter Sarah and his dying son Martin. Written by Jesse Garon <grifter@primenet.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

book | See All (1) »

Taglines:

Doing What Is Right... Could Cost Him Everything.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Both Ron Rifkin and Sarah Jessica Parker reprised their roles from the original Off-Broadway production. Rifkin received a Lortel award for his performance in the original play. See more »

Quotes

Sarah Geldheart: Tell me the truth. Does anybody actually finish a book once they have formed an opinion of it?
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Connections

Referenced in Showbiz Today: Episode dated 28 August 1995 (1995) See more »

User Reviews

Film version of play Has "Substance",lacks "Fire".
19 December 2001 | by peachamSee all my reviews

The Main reason to see the film version of "The Substance Of Fire" is Ron Rifkin's splendid performance. He reprises the role he created on stage with great aplomb.It is however,one of the few reasons to see this film.The plot has been drastically altered from the original play,even adding major characters that did not exist in the original.The basic story remains, a Jewish Publisher and his slow decent into dementia brought on through his loss of control of the company to his son. But there it ends. The messages in this film are very clear,but the execution,direction and scripting destroy the impact of the original play.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 March 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Substance of Fire See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$56,211, 16 March 1997

Gross USA:

$31,638

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$31,638
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Miramax See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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