6.2/10
28,696
226 user 116 critic

The Human Stain (2003)

Trailer
1:45 | Trailer
When a disgraced former college dean has a romance with a mysterious younger woman haunted by her dark, twisted past, he is forced to confront a shocking fact about his own life that he has kept secret for fifty years.

Director:

Robert Benton

Writers:

Philip Roth (novel), Nicholas Meyer (screenplay)
3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Anthony Hopkins ... Coleman Silk
Nicole Kidman ... Faunia Farley
Ed Harris ... Lester Farley
Gary Sinise ... Nathan Zuckerman
Wentworth Miller ... Young Coleman Silk
Jacinda Barrett ... Steena Paulsson
Harry Lennix ... Mr. Silk
Clark Gregg ... Nelson Primus
Anna Deavere Smith ... Mrs. Silk
Lizan Mitchell Lizan Mitchell ... Ernestine
Kerry Washington ... Ellie
Phyllis Newman ... Iris Silk
Margo Martindale ... Psychologist
Ron Canada ... Herb Keble
Mili Avital ... Young Iris
Learn more

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Storyline

This is the story of Coleman Silk (Sir Anthony Hopkins), a classics professor with a terrible secret that is about to shatter his life in a small New England town. When his affair with young troubled janitor Faunia Farley (Nicole Kidman) is uncovered, the secret Silk had harbored for over fifty years from his wife, his children, and colleague, writer Nathan Zuckerman (Gary Sinise), fast explodes in a conflagration of devastating consequences. It is Zuckerman who stumbles upon Silk's secret and sets out to reconstruct the unknown biography of this eminent, upright man, esteemed as an educator for nearly all of his life, and to understand how this ingeniously contrived life became unravelled. Written by lakeshoreentertainment.com

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

How far would you go to escape the past?


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

To prepare for her role, Nicole Kidman (Faunia Farley) visited women's shelters and talked to former victims of abuse for inspiration. See more »

Goofs

When Steena is dancing for the young Silk, her panties change position between shots. See more »

Quotes

Young Coleman Silk: [giving eulogy] Cowards die many times before their death; the valiant only taste death but once. Of all the wonders that I yet have heard, it seems to me most strange that men should fear; seeing that death, a necessary end, will come when it will come.
See more »

Connections

References The Oprah Winfrey Show (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

Cheek to Cheek
(1936)
Written by Irving Berlin
Performed by Fred Astaire
Courtesy of Turner Entertainment Co.
The appearance of Mr. Fred Astaire has been arranged through a special license with Mrs. Fred Astaire,
Beverly Hills, California
All rights reserved
See more »

User Reviews

 
Almost Great
16 November 2003 | by brenttraftSee all my reviews

I almost did not see this because of the poor reviews (only 38% on Rotten Tomatoes) but I'm glad I ignored the reviews and saw it any way. While far from perfect, it is still one of the better films of the year.

This is a film that aims high, which makes it's imperfections stand out all that much more. While the critics have documented all that is wrong with this film, it is still a powerful story with great acting and cinematography. For me, more cinematic style would have been what this film needed to take it from being a good film to being a great film.

A strong 8/10 rating.


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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

Germany | France | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 October 2003 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

The Human Stain See more »

Filming Locations:

Québec, Canada See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,034,195, 2 November 2003

Gross USA:

$5,381,908

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$22,954,068
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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