6.4/10
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107 user 80 critic
An ultraconservative police officer suffers a debilitating stroke and is assigned to a rehabilitative program that includes singing lessons, with the drag queen next door.

Director:

Joel Schumacher

Writer:

Joel Schumacher

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3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert De Niro ... Walt Koontz
Philip Seymour Hoffman ... Rusty
Barry Miller ... Leonard Wilcox
Chris Bauer ... Jacko
Skipp Sudduth ... Tommy
Wilson Jermaine Heredia ... Cha-Cha
Nashom Benjamin Nashom Benjamin ... Amazing Grace
Scott Allen Cooper Scott Allen Cooper ... Ivana
Rory Cochrane ... Pogo
Daphne Rubin-Vega ... Tia
Vincent Laresca ... Raymond Camacho
Karina Arroyave ... Amber
John Enos III ... Sonny (as John Enos)
Jude Ciccolella ... Detective Noonan
Mina Bern ... Mrs. Spivak
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Storyline

Walt Koontz, a homophobic cop, ends up with paralyzed vocal cords because of an unfortunate stroke. His therapy includes singing lessons from a neighbor who is not only flamboyantly gay but also pre-operative transgender. Both of them are equally prejudiced; Koontz against non-heterosexuals and the neighbor against closed-minded straight people. Written by Rob Reser - The Movie Kid - <moviekid@filmspot.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

They couldn't like each other less or need each other more. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive language and strong violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 November 1999 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Makellos See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,590,155, 28 November 1999, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$4,485,485, 5 March 2000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Tribeca Productions See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS-Stereo | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Joel Schumacher conceived the idea for the film from personal experience. One of his close friends suffered a series of strokes and had to relearn how to speak through singing lessons. See more »

Quotes

Walt Koontz: I can't do it!
Rusty Zimmerman: Yeah? Well "can't" lives on "won't" street.
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the credits, DeNiro and Hoffman sing the "Name Song" together while staying in character. See more »

Connections

References The Silence of the Lambs (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

Planet Love
Written by Bruce Roberts & Allee Willis
Performed by Taylor Dayne
Produced by Pete Lorimer & Taylor Dayne
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Built from perceptions minted in 1950...
7 September 2005 | by moonspinner55See all my reviews

Philip Seymour Hoffman is good--if one-note--as a drag queen in New York who makes nice with the neighbor he hates, security officer and now stroke-victim Robert De Niro. The antagonistic relationship between the two might've used a bit more smoothing over (occasionally it feels like they're winging it, and De Niro's speech impediment tends to vary), but with two such fine actors running the scenes, there are compensations. De Niro himself looks fantastic, and he doesn't try to command the picture or any of his scenes with Hoffman; he's such a team player that you automatically respond to him. A drug-czar subplot is old hat, and the dancehall girl-with-the-pure-heart stuff is an obvious cliché, it has all been done before. But the real problem with the movie is that times have changed and perceptions are different, and not all gays are drag-queens and not all drag-queens want to have sex-change operations. It's a moldy movie myth that the filmmakers don't seem to get (perhaps they were brought up in an earlier era and believe the stereotype?). The continual foul language is a strain to listen to, but the growing camaraderie between the two leads proves to have some interesting give-and-take. **1/2 from ****


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