5.6/10
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79 user 64 critic

The Singing Detective (2003)

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ON DISC
From his hospital bed, a writer suffering from a skin disease hallucinates musical numbers and paranoid plots.

Director:

Keith Gordon

Writers:

Dennis Potter (screenplay), Dennis Potter (television series)
1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Downey Jr. ... Dan Dark
Robin Wright ... Nicola / Nina / Blonde (as Robin Wright Penn)
Mel Gibson ... Dr. Gibbon
Jeremy Northam ... Mark Binney
Katie Holmes ... Nurse Mills
Adrien Brody ... First Hood
Jon Polito ... Second Hood
Carla Gugino ... Betty Dark / Hooker
Saul Rubinek ... Skin Specialist
Alfre Woodard ... Chief of Staff
Amy Aquino ... Nurse Nozhki
David Dorfman ... Young Dan Dark
Eddie Jones ... Moonglow Bartender
Lily Knight ... Woman Physiotherapist
Clyde Kusatsu ... Visiting Japanese Doctor
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Storyline

"While hospitalized with an extreme case of psoriasis, novelist Dan Dark reworks his first book in his head. Feverish, paranoid and prone to musical outbreaks, he confuses himself with his protagonist, a detective investigating the murder of a prostitute in 1950s Los Angeles." Written by Mag-Helder Thélot

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

When it comes to murder, seduction and betrayal he wrote the book. Now he's living it!


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexual content, language and some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 November 2003 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

El detective cantante See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$8,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$28,324, 26 October 2003, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$336,456, 1 February 2004
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Keith Gordon and Robert Downey, Jr. appeared in Back to School (1986). See more »

Goofs

The position of Dark's gun hand when he chases the goons into the street after they try to kill him in the nightclub. See more »

Quotes

[Second hood turns off the car radio]
First Hood: Hey, I like Patti Page.
Second Hood: Yeah, but does she like you?
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the end credits we see Robert Downey Jr. perform the song "In My Dreams" See more »

Connections

References The Maltese Falcon (1941) See more »

Soundtracks

At The Hop
Written by John Madara, Dave White and Artie Singer
Published by Arc Music Corp. (BMI) and Unichappell Music (BMI)
Performed by Danny and the Juniors (as Danny & The Juniors)
Courtesy of MCA Records
Under license from Universal Music Enteprises
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
An imperfect film for an imperfect world
12 July 2004 | by artzauSee all my reviews

Hey, I liked it. There were good things: Gibson unrecognizable as the shrink, Downey at his best, whacky story, pastiches of film noir, mind mystique, Touches of Freud, Jung... but it's not perfect. Some confusions persist: Downey as the frustrated, nonintrospective, horny writer whose imagination has taken over his life is often whining. His round-heeled mother has few redeeming features, the shifts between real and irrealis is jerky..., and so on. It's easy to find fault with a complex tale and one in which there are so many loose ends and ravelings but what do you take away with you when it's all said and done? Reading through the comments here, I came across the usual "I didn't like this..." and "I didn't like that..." comments. OK. Not every one likes pistachio ice cream. I love to see, hear and consider other views because it makes me reexamine my own impressions. Of interest to me was the recurring theme of confusion in these commentaries. I shared much of that because of the less than smooth transitions in the switches to irreality and the flashbacks. In films where the observers are given admittance to the inside of the performer's head, must be a melange of images, themes and mini-scenes because, alas, that's the way the mind works. So, from an audience perspective, it works for some and won't for others because, alas again, that is the way OUR minds work. Sorry to wax so psychiatrically but films like this one, as imperfect as it is, can tell us a lot about ourselves.


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