6.6/10
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31 user 34 critic

Under the Skin (1997)

Although married and pregnant Rose has always been Mother's favorite, it is younger sister Iris whose life is shaken up by Mother's death. Suffocating, Iris spirals out of control and copes... See full summary »

Director:

Carine Adler

Writer:

Carine Adler
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7 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Samantha Morton ... Iris Kelly
Claire Rushbrook ... Rose Kelly
Rita Tushingham ... Mum
Christine Tremarco Christine Tremarco ... Vron
Stuart Townsend ... Tom
Matthew Delamere ... Gary
Mark Womack ... Frank
Clara Francis Clara Francis ... Elena
Joe Tucker ... Sam
Daniel O'Meara ... Max
Crissy Rock ... Compere
Lisa Millett ... Sylvia (as Lisa Millet)
John Whitehall John Whitehall ... Man at station
Marie Jelliman Marie Jelliman ... Manageress
Michelle Byatt Michelle Byatt ... Woman In Lost Property
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Storyline

Although married and pregnant Rose has always been Mother's favorite, it is younger sister Iris whose life is shaken up by Mother's death. Suffocating, Iris spirals out of control and copes by losing herself in sexual oblivion. She leaves her steady, Gary, for a steady stream of one night stands in the arms of mysterious strangers, alienating Gary, Rose, her friends, and her employers in the process. Will this go on until she loses everything that is meaningful to her? Written by Martin Lewison <lewison@pitt.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Your body betrays your soul.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 May 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A flor de piel See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby | Dolby SR (35 mm prints)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director Adler based her ideas for the script on forensic psychiatrist Estela Weldon's book "Mother Madonna Whore" which argues that, whereas men externalize their grieving processes through anger, women internalize them via paths which can incorporate such extreme reactions as mutilation and promiscuity. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Iris Kelly: [voice-over] When I was small my mother was everything to me. I thought she was beautiful, and I wanted to be like her. I used to try and smile, walk and talk just like her; I even practiced laughing like she did. My mother loved flowers, and her favourite flowers were roses. And so she called my sister Rose. And she called me Iris.
See more »


Soundtracks

PICK-UP
Written by The Aloof
Performed by The Aloof
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User Reviews

 
Depth of Emotion
7 February 2003 | by AeternoxSee all my reviews

This is a very good film. It grabbed my attention after seeing the great Morvern Callar last week, which also features Samantha Morton. As said in other comments, Under the Skin is considered her breakthrough. She is a truly gifted actress, I love her depth of emotion.

At one point in this movie she walks along a ribbed fence, while touching it with her right hand: taktaktaktaktak. I don't know if this is a reference, but it reminded me of a scene in one of Kieslowski's Trois Couleurs films (Rouge, I believe.) There an equally tormented woman walks along a brick wall in a similar way, wounding her right hand which starts to bleed heavily.

I wouldn't say those films are really the same, but I would certainly recommend the one if someone would like the other. In both films, as well as Morvern Callar, we follow a female protagonist unable to deal with a traumatic experience, the passing away of someone very close to her. We follow her down the road of estrangement, wondering if she will ever find peace.


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