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Playing by Heart (1998)

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0:26 | Trailer

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ON DISC
Eleven articulate people work through affairs of the heart in L.A.

Director:

Willard Carroll

Writer:

Willard Carroll
Reviews
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Angelina Jolie ... Joan
Dennis Quaid ... Hugh
April Grace ... Valery
Patricia Clarkson ... Allison
Gena Rowlands ... Hannah
Sean Connery ... Paul
Gillian Anderson ... Meredith
Christian Mills Christian Mills ... Phillip
Kellie Waymire ... Jane
Madeleine Stowe ... Gracie
Anthony Edwards ... Roger
Ellen Burstyn ... Mildred
Jay Mohr ... Mark
Tim Halligan ... Cook Show Director
Michael Emerson ... Bosco
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Storyline

Eleven articulate people work through affairs of the heart in L.A. Paul produces Hannah's TV cooking show, and they must move beyond gentle barbs when she wants to know about an affair of his years ago. Mark is dying of AIDS, and his mother comes to his bedside: they must talk truthfully. Men have scalded Meredith so she rebuffs Trent's charm, but he persists. The trendy, prolix Joan tries to pull the solitary Keenan into her orbit: why is he reluctant? An adulterous couple meet at hotels for evening sex, but she is unwilling for the relationship to grow. Hugh tells tall tales, usually tragic, to women in bars. By the week's end, their parallel stories converge. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The comedy with a twist. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

22 January 1999 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

If They Only Knew See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$14,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$26,669, 3 January 1999, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$3,956,212, 21 February 1999
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

SDDS | DTS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ryan Phillippe didn't tell the filmmakers that he was going to dye his hair blue. The first they knew of it, was when he turned up on set on the day of filming with his hair a different color. Most of the cast and crew were taken aback, but director Willard Carroll liked it. Coincidentally, Angelina Jolie dyed her hair on exactly the same day. See more »

Goofs

Throughout the entire movie, whenever there is a scene (and there are many) involving martinis, between shots the olives and level of vodka in the glass change. This happens many time when a character either eats an olive or is about to eat one, it will re-appear in the glass seconds later. Also - many times where the character is starting to say something, and the view is changed to be from their point of view and their lips are no longer moving. See more »

Quotes

Joan: Last time I saw Harry he was wearing a blue sweater and an idiotic expression. The sweater was new.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening scenes introducing the major characters list their character names with subtitles, but not the actors/actresses who are portraying them. See more »

Alternate Versions

Trailer includes scenes of sexual encounter between Anthony Edwards and Madeline Stowe. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Harvey Weinstein Scandal: Aftermath (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Lover's Will
(1983)
Written by John Hiatt
Performed by Bonnie Raitt
Courtesy of Capitol Records
Under license from EMI Music Special Markets
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Short stories
4 October 2005 | by jotix100See all my reviews

Writer/director Willard Carroll, the director of "Playing by Heart", has constructed a multi storied film where different narratives are seen completely without any idea how they are connected until the end. This device has been employed by other directors, notably, Robert Altman. Whereas Mr. Altman interconnects his scenes differently, Mr. Carroll, keeps the stories separate, only to have them come together at the end.

The director was exceptionally lucky in amassing this talented cast to appear in his film. Viewers of all ages will identify with the different stories since they resonate with different age groups. Most comments submitted to IMDb seem to be from young viewers who think the best thing in the movie are Joan and Keenan. While this couple do a good job, there are other good moments involving some of the other couples we see in the film.

Sean Connery and Gena Rowlands make an excellent couple. Angelina Jolie and Ryan Phillippe do also good work in the film. But Madeleine Stowe and Gillian Anderson have more interesting characters. Same could be said about Dennis Quaid, who makes a mark as Hugh, the tormented man who discovers his wife's infidelity. Anthony Edwards, Ellen Burstyn, Jay Mohr, and a surprising Jon Stewart are among the actors seen in minor roles.

The film will delight audiences because the film catches one's imagination from the beginning.


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