By working through problems stemming from his past, Tom Warshaw, an American artist living in Paris, begins to discover who he really is, and returns to his home to reconcile with his family and friends.
On their son Odell's 13the birthday, graphic artist Tom Warszaw finally confesses to his wife why he fled Greenwich Village, NYC at that age to Paris. As a schoolboy, naturally sensitive, considerate Tommy was best buddy with 'adult' half-wit Pappass, father Duncan's Catholic school's assistant janitor. Smothered by his dependent mother, a dumb orderly, Tommy got 'parental advice' from a women's prison inmate. Together with Pappas, he saves up tips from their butchery delivery rounds. One night, Pappas steals the bike they were saving for. Tommy tries to take the blame, but ends up expelled as if the instigator. Even more tragic consequences follow.Written by
At the beginning of the school dance scene, there is a kid screaming "Sabbath. Sabbath." Later on, the same kid is shown to be the DJ, and when he is changing records, you can hear his voice still screaming "Sabbath. Sabbath." in the background, even though he is not saying it. See more »
My name is Tom Warshaw. I'm an American artist living in Paris. I've lived here for 30 years with a secret nobody knows. My son, Odell, is turning 13 today. And for his birthday, I'm gonna tell him my secret.
I'm gonna tell him, "You know how in old movies when the bad guys want to break into a safe? There's this one guy, the safecracker, who puts his ear up to the lock and listens as he dials the combination, listening for what they call in English, the tumblers. Because...
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If you asked me to write down a list of movie cliches some things on my list would include: the wise black sage the white people listen to, the kid with no father and troubled mother, a nostalgic look back at school (prep schools especially), and the mentally retarded person who is actually very wise. All of these old cliches were found in HOUSE OF D, and they lessened my enjoyment of it a great deal. I was able to see the first New York showing of David Duchovny's HOUSE OF D at the Tribeca Film Festival. I was weary of the film because it is Duchovny's first feature and he can run hot and cold as an actor. However after hearing a bit about the plot and knowing Robin Williams was in it I did have high expectations. The never ending barge of cliches, the unbelievablility of several of the events, and the equally cliched and unintelligent performance by Tea Leoni seriously hurt my enjoyment of the film. The story is told by an Tommy, an American artist (Duchovny) who has lived in Paris for the last 15 years, and for the first time is revealing his past to his wife. Until the last ten minutes, we flashback to Tommy's childhood in Greenwich Village, New York. Tommy (now played by the pleasing Anton Yelchin of HEARTS IN ATLANTIS) attends a prep school in the Villiage, works part time for as a meat delivery boy with his fourty year old best friend, the mentally slow Pappass (Williams), and lives with his chain-smoking mother (Leoni). The House of D, of the title, is the Women's House of Detention, a towering building Tommy and Pappass frequently bury their money by. Receiving little advice at home, Tommy listens to the advice of "Lady" (a fine, Erykah Badu), a prisoner there who Tommy cannot evern see. Lady gives Tommy advice on everything including dancing and how to woo a girl he likes. Pappass however doesn't like the fact Tommy has a girlfriends, and sets out to win Tommy back, a decision that bring forth an overly horrific chain of events that include robbery and death. Although he seems annoying at first, Yelchin grows on you, and eventually creates a believeable, likeable youth, who's world varies from fairy tale to horror story. Williams is playing a type of man-child, a role he could play in his sleep. Surprisingly, Williams is quite reserved and stays away from other style Dustin Hoffman in RAIN MAN and Sean Penn in I AM SAM used. At first glance Pappass could seem like a normal 40 year old, he just doesn't function as quickly as most. Although I was very happy with his choices, Williams did not seem to be having much fun with the picture, his character seemed almost too easy to play. The film also featured Frank Langella as the Reverend in charge of the school. Although he was rather funny, Duchovny made the character totally unbelievable and underwritten. Willie Garson, Stephen Spinella, and Orlando Jones all turned in small roles that seemed too small for names and talents of their size. Finally some of the events seemed unlikely, like the first sequence in which Duchovny has an afternoon bike ride in which he seemingly bike rides past the Eifel Tower, Nortre Dame, and several other French landmarks that are no where near each other. The New York setting can also switch from the Village to the upper East side in a mattter of moments. Hopefull David constructs a better script next time and is a little more exact with his direction. The story of a prisoner providing advice and bonding with someone on the outside is very clever, unfortunetly the way it was told recycled so much old material. Rating: ** (out of ****)
HOUSE OF D written & directed by David Duchovny with Anton Yelcin, Robin Williams, Tea Leoni, David Duchovny, Erykah Badu, Frank Langella, and Orlando Jones Photography by Michael Chapman Music by Geoff Zanelli Music Supervised by Hans Zimmer
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