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Solid Geometry (2002)

Solid Geometry is about Phil whose life is changed when he receives 41 volumes of his great grandfather's diaries. The diaries becomes an obsession and alienates himself away from his wife ... See full summary »


Denis Lawson


Denis Lawson, Ian McEwan (short story)


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Credited cast:
Ewan McGregor ... Phil
Ruth Millar Ruth Millar ... Maisie
Peter Capaldi ... David Hunter
Jonathan Watson ... Patrick Murray
John Murtagh John Murtagh ... Dr. Vosse
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Angela Darcy Angela Darcy ... Phil's Friend
James Lyon ... Sound Engineer
Beth Marshall Beth Marshall ... Phil's Friend
Frank Miller Frank Miller ... Actor
Stuart Wilkinson Stuart Wilkinson ... Phil's Friend


Solid Geometry is about Phil whose life is changed when he receives 41 volumes of his great grandfather's diaries. The diaries becomes an obsession and alienates himself away from his wife Maisie. In the diaries, Phil comes across "the plane without a surface," a geometrical figure that operates as a one-way ticket to another dimension. He creates the figure and tests it on Maisie. Written by Helen Yates

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Mystery | Short



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Release Date:

28 November 2002 (UK) See more »

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Solid Geometry See more »

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Did You Know?


Ewan McGreggor has worked with two Doctors: Christopher Eccleston in Shallow Graves (1994) and Peter Capaldi in Solid Gemoetry (2002). Eccleston played the Ninth Doctor on Doctor Who (2005-) in its first season and Capaldi played the Twelfth Doctor on Doctor Who (2005-) in season 8-10. See more »

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User Reviews

Intriguing with only the inevitable problem of how to conclude the story being a real weakness
31 May 2004 | by bob the mooSee all my reviews

Phil has a career in advertising, which he drops when his grandfather leaves him 41 volumes of his great grandfather's diaries and £25k to edit them. As phil starts to delve into the diaries he finds them full of 'funny, weird things'. As the diaries become an obsession he starts to become alienated from his wife and lose himself in the pursuit of a geometric figure that has no surface and talk of sexual positions.

This film was first made in the late 1970's by the BBC but it was abandoned as a project because of it's sexual content. Nowadays seeing Ewan McGregor in an arty film with lots of sex, nudity and soul searching is just a sign that it's spring and barely raises an eyebrow outside of the curtain-twitching readership of the Daily Mail. It was not the promise of a bit of t&a that brought me to this short film, it was the promise of intrigue from a story that seemed to offer all sorts of 'funny, weird things'. Indeed for the vast majority of the film we are led down a strange path that is enjoyable because we do not know where we are being taken but, with each step, our interest increases. However the film leaves us with no answers – only questions. What do the number of sexual positions, the penis in a jar, the shape without a surface, Maisie's dreams and the other dimension have to do with each other? I had no idea but was interested to find out even a little bit – but the film didn't deliver.

The film ends with no answers and is pretty unsatisfactory at the end. However that is not to say that it is without value – for it isn't. It is consistently interesting and will have you thinking about it for quite some time afterwards. Considering he is famous for being Wedge Antilles, Lawson does a good job directing – it can't be easy to direct sex scenes with your nephew in the buff in front of you! He also does well with the spirit of mystery and intrigue – pitching it right (sadly making the ending more annoying!). McGregor is great value even if this is hardly anything special for him (nudity et al), he does manage to show his character's descent pretty well. Millar is also good but her character's changes are less clear. A brief appearance from Capaldi is good as well but the film really belongs to the subject matter and that's only hurt by the end.

Overall this is an interesting short that I'm glad I saw. I don't know if it was worth a couple of decades wait or the hype that channel 4 gave it on first release but I still enjoyed it. The ending is frustrating as it doesn't deliver anything other than an anti-climax but if anything that has prompted me to try and read McEwan's source novel.

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