5.3/10
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363 user 122 critic

In the Cut (2003)

Trailer
1:58 | Trailer
New York City writing professor, Frannie Avery, has an affair with a police detective, who is investigating the murder of a beautiful young woman in her neighborhood.

Director:

Jane Campion

Writers:

Jane Campion (screenplay), Susanna Moore (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
4,346 ( 587)
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jennifer Jason Leigh ... Pauline
Meg Ryan ... Frannie Avery
Michael Nuccio Michael Nuccio ... Frannie's Young Father (as Micheal Nuccio)
Allison Nega Allison Nega ... Young Father's Fiancee (as Alison Nega)
Dominick Aries Dominick Aries ... Attentive Husband
Susan Gardner Susan Gardner ... Perfect Wife
Sharrieff Pugh ... Cornelius Webb
Nick Damici ... Detective Ritchie Rodriguez
Heather Litteer ... Angela Sands
Daniel T. Booth Daniel T. Booth ... Luther Wilker Red Turtle Bartender
Yaani King Mondschein ... Frannie's Student (as Yaani King)
Frank Harts ... Frannie's Student
Sebastian Sozzi ... Frannie's Student
Zach Wegner ... Frannie's Student (as Zack Wegner)
Mark Ruffalo ... Detective Giovanni A. Malloy
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Storyline

Frankie Avery is a NYC teacher who embarks on a relationship with NYPD Detective Malloy, who, along with his partner, is investigating the murder of a young woman, part of whose body was found in the garden outside of Frannie's apartment. Malloy believes this murder is the work of a serial killer,. Beyond the murder investigation, she continues her association with Malloy despite her catching him in a lie which may have dangerous implications. As the relationship contributes, she discovers more evidence pointing to him being the serial killer. Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Everything you know about desire is dead wrong.

Genres:

Mystery | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexuality including explicit dialogue, nudity, graphic crime scenes and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jane Campion had tried to direct the film ever since the book was published in 1996. See more »

Goofs

Franny gets on the A train at W 4 St (you can read the sign on the pole before the train pulls in). As she is getting on the train, the wall behind her says "Church", a different stop. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Pauline: What does "broccoli" mean"?
Frannie: Depends on the context. Pubic hair or marijuana. It's a noun.
Pauline: And "Virginia"?
Frannie: Vagina. As in, "He penetrated her Virginia with a hammer".
See more »

Crazy Credits

There is a typo in the credits - 'transportation' is spelt 'tranportation' (missing the 's') See more »

Alternate Versions

Available in both a Rated R and Unrated DVD. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Imagine Me & You (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

'Allo 'Allo
Written by Anita Daulne and Marie Daulne
Performed by Zap Mama
See more »

User Reviews

My extended review of the film
19 January 2005 | by sol-See all my reviews

Many people out there do not understand the difference between the Best Picture and Best Director Oscar. After all, if the director is responsible for making sure all the elements mix well together, then surely Best Director should be the same as Best Picture? Well that is not quite the case, as far as I understand it. The writing of the film, or the story itself, is at least the main thing that a director does not have complete control of. There are other elements too of course. But the reason why it is so hard to explain the difference to people is that it is rare to come across a film that is well directed but nothing much else. However, 'In the Cut' is an example of such a film.

The plot is a thriller about some serial killer who is killing young women. Sound familiar yet? However there is a (pseudo) erotic romance involved too. Our protagonist is an outgoing female, but yet one with weaknesses. The storyline revolves around a primarily sexual relationship that she starts with a detective investigating the case, however all along she suspects that he is the killer, because she saw someone with the same tattoo receiving oral sex from one of the murder victims. I won't reveal the rest of the plot, which may sound slightly original, but yet I can reassure you it is quite hackneyed in the execution.

The film is based on a novel written by Susannah Moore, which I am yet to read, and after seeing the film adaptation, I am in no mood to. Campion takes to writing the screenplay, but helped along by Moore. In 1993, Campion did a superb job writing 'The Piano', for which she received a well-deserved Oscar. The characters in the film were all interesting and well developed, and the story was no difficulty to understand. It was also quite original. The material for this movie however revolves around a familiar plot that has a thriller element. More time in the script is dedicated therefore towards the thriller – and romance – aspects of the story, and less towards the drama. That's not to say that the characters are poorly developed or anything, but it does not help. The main problem with the writing of the film is the story itself. It has so many familiar elements and at times it is predictable and clichéd.

The acting is not much better than ordinary either. Ryan has a few good moments, but is often over-the-top. The rest of the cast is, well, satisfactory, but nothing special, give or take Kevin Bacon. However Bacon's character is perhaps the most questionable one of the lot. So if the writing and acting in the film is ordinary, can it be a great film? Not really. How then, one might wonder, is it well directed? Campion is a very good director. She knows exactly how to direct a film to give it the right atmosphere and make it look good. In the Cut is one of the best-looking thrillers I've seen of this decade. As in 'The Portrait of a Lady', Campion demonstrates an acute eye for colour and light in the film. The execution is very polished. On a surface level it does not look like a cheap Hollywood film. It does not look like a vehicle for Ryan or any of her co-stars. Kudos especially goes to Campion's vision of the flashbacks used in the film, which are reminiscent of the vignettes Kidman's worldwide voyages in 'The Portrait of a Lady'. Even Campion's use of black and white aids the visual style.

This is certainly one of the most unique films I have come across, but I don't say that in an overly positive manner. It is a very good-looking film, and ignoring camera angles and editing techniques, it still looks very solid on a visual scope. There is plenty to admire about Campion's direction of the film, but under this polished surface that Campion has created lies an ordinary, predictable, clichéd and only semi-interesting thriller. It is a film worth seeing to admire Campion's craft as a director, but the film is otherwise rather unrewarding, though it surely will still keep one watching until maybe the last ten minutes.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Pathé [France] | Sony Pictures

Country:

UK | Australia | France | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

31 October 2003 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

In the Cut See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$12,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$97,625, 26 October 2003

Gross USA:

$4,750,602

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$23,726,793
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

|

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | SDDS | DTS

Color:

Black and White (fantasy sequences) (Sepiatone)| Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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