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Disgrace (2008)

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After having an affair with a student, a Cape Town professor moves to the Eastern Cape, where he gets caught up in a mess of post-apartheid politics.

Director:

Steve Jacobs

Writers:

J.M. Coetzee (novel), Anna Maria Monticelli (screenplay)
5 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Stars: Catherine Deneuve, Daniel Auteuil, Laurence Côte
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Malkovich ... Professor David Lurie
Jessica Haines Jessica Haines ... Lucy Lurie
Eriq Ebouaney ... Petrus
Fiona Press ... Bev Shaw
Antoinette Engel Antoinette Engel ... Melanie Isaacs
Natalie Becker ... Soraya
Antonio Fisher Antonio Fisher ... Sidney - Student
Isabella De Villiers Isabella De Villiers ... Mrs. Cundell - Student
Cindy Mkaza Cindy Mkaza ... Mrs. Mbeti - Student
Liezel De Kock Liezel De Kock ... Student Director
Charles Tertiens Charles Tertiens ... Ryan
David Dennis David Dennis ... Mr. Isaacs (as David Denis)
Paula Arundell Paula Arundell ... Dr Farodia Rassool
Anne Looby Anne Looby ... Rosalind
David Ritchie David Ritchie ... Manas Mathbane
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Storyline

Cape Town professor David Lurie blatantly refuses to defend himself for an affair with a colored student whom he gave a passing grade for an exam she didn't even attend. Dismissed, he moves to his daughter Lucy's farm, which she runs under most disadvantaged terms, favoring the black locals. Yet rowdies, unprovoked, violently rob and abuse them both. Lucy refuses to fight back, unlike David, who is surprised by his own altruistic potential. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He is what he calls himself, a monster. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Australia | South Africa

Language:

English | Xhosa | Afrikaans | Zulu

Release Date:

18 June 2009 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

Desgracia See more »

Filming Locations:

South Africa See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$12,615, 20 September 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$66,643, 4 October 2009
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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Did You Know?

Trivia

'Disgrace' won the Best Narrative Film (The Black Pearl) Award at the Middle East Film Festival 2008. See more »

Goofs

When David confronts Lucy at the impound yard, he pulls her left arm away from the steering wheel. In the next shot, it has returned. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Professor David Lurie: I haven't heard from my daughter.
Soraya: Still living with a woman.
Professor David Lurie: Yes, still a lesbian. Still on the farm. She thinks it's safe there.
Soraya: No where's safe. Too many people with nothing to do but cause trouble. How's work?
Professor David Lurie: They look through me when I speak. Forget my name.
Soraya: There's no respect anymore. Have you missed me?
Professor David Lurie: I miss you all the time.
See more »

Connections

References Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1939) See more »

Soundtracks

Izinja Jam
Written by Ntshangase/ Tshabalala/ Bala/ Bala/ Mabalane/ Diseko/ Ntshebele
Performed by Tkee Family
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User Reviews

 
A strong meditation on man's sexual drive
10 June 2009 | by lreynaertSee all my reviews

After having read J.M. Coetzee's complex, disturbing, shocking and controversial novel, one could not directly see how this story could be transformed into an appealing screenplay and still less into a convincing movie. It's heavily charged with all kind of sexual contacts, unforced and forced ones (by someone who is in a dominating position) and even with pure rape. It deals also with the eventual outcome of those contacts, like pregnancy and parental love. Moreover, the story unfolds against the violent background of open racism in a country known for its apartheid.

Steve Jacobs did a formidable job in turning the harsh and sometimes bitter and terrible realities into a moving, emotional and ultimately sublime movie, which matches the book. The director was impressively helped by his cast and in the first place by John Malkovich, whose (physical! and mental) interpretation of the very uninviting character of a sexually driven university professor is certainly one of his most memorable. He was superbly seconded by Jessica Haines as his fiercely independent daughter as well as by the rest of the cast.

A must see for all movie lovers and for all admirers J. M. Coetzee's work.


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