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Lady in the Water (2006)

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Apartment building superintendent Cleveland Heep rescues what he thinks is a young woman from the pool he maintains. When he discovers that she is actually a character from a bedtime story who is trying to make the journey back to her home, he works with his tenants to protect his new friend from the creatures that are determined to keep her in our world.

Director:

M. Night Shyamalan
Popularity
2,354 ( 328)
10 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Paul Giamatti ... Cleveland Heep
Bryce Dallas Howard ... Story
Jeffrey Wright ... Mr. Dury
Bob Balaban ... Harry Farber
Sarita Choudhury ... Anna Ran
Cindy Cheung ... Young-Soon Choi
M. Night Shyamalan ... Vick Ran
Freddy Rodríguez ... Reggie
Bill Irwin ... Mr. Leeds
Mary Beth Hurt ... Mrs. Bell
Noah Gray-Cabey ... Joey Dury
Joseph D. Reitman ... Long Haired Smoker
Jared Harris ... Goatee Smoker
Grant Monohon ... Emaciated Smoker
John Boyd ... One-Eyebrow Smoker
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Storyline

Cleveland Heep, a stuttering apartment superintendent, encounters a girl named Story swimming in the complex's pool. He soon learns that she comes from the Blue World, and has a message for mankind. Will he be able to help her complete her mission? Written by JRF

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Some stories are real. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some frightening sequences | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 July 2006 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La dama en el agua See more »

Filming Locations:

Levittown, Pennsylvania, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$70,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$18,044,396, 23 July 2006, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$42,285,169

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$72,785,169
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

SDDS | Dolby Digital EX | DTS-ES

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

M. Night Shyamalan: [self] Acting in his movies. His character, "Vick Ran," is a reference to Vikram Seth, an Indian author. See more »

Goofs

Before Cleveland Heep dives into the pool after Story, he takes his glasses off. After Story saves him, his glasses appear and disappear during shots, especially during the sequence where he is talking to the tenants. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Cleveland Heep: [narrating] Once, man and those in the water were linked. They inspired us. They spoke of the future. Man listened and it became real. But man does not listen very well. Man's need to own everything led him deeper into land. The magic world of the ones that live in the ocean, and the world of men, separated. Through the centuries their world, and all the inhabitants of it stopped trying. The world of man become more violent. War upon war played out, as there were no guides to listen...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Childlike illustrations appear over and under some of the end credits. See more »


Soundtracks

El Cayuco
Written by Tito Puente
Performed by Mambo All-Stars
Courtesy of Peer-Southern Productions, Inc.
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

One bizarre evening
2 August 2006 | by mstomasoSee all my reviews

I can't rate this film.

When I go to see a Shyamalan film, I expect to be entertained and stimulated, but I never know exactly how this will be accomplished. Shyamalan's films use ambiguity aesthetically and he draws his audience through the seduction of interpretive participation. Of all of his films, perhaps Lady in the Water does this most profoundly. Although I understood the entire film - the plot, the themes, the method - I walked away asking "what the hell did I just see?" It's easy enough to categorize the film. Lady in the Water is an absurdist comedy. But it makes you ask yourself why you are laughing. With Shyamalan's talent as it is, it is impossible for me to believe that any aspect of the humor of this film was unintentional. Yet the other side of LITW is dark fantasy, in the tradition of Michael Cohn's Snow White.

With a cast David Lynch would have been happy with, Shyamalan tells a fable from East Asia as it is experienced by a superintendent (Giamatti) at an apartment complex full of mundanely odd characters. A strange and beautiful young woman (Howard) has emerged from the complex's pool, apparently seeking contact with the surface world so she can find folkloric archetypes who can protect her from the evil creatures that hunt her and return her to her world beneath the waves.

Giamatti, Howard, and Shyamalan himself are all very entertaining. Howard - a very unusual looking and uniquely pretty woman - is shot so beautifully that it is very difficult to take your eyes off of her. M. Night's performance is so bizarre, it is hard to tell whether or not he is acting.

LITW is definitely the strangest film I have seen from Shyamalan. I have been up and down with him since the beginning of his career, enjoying his early films, very much disliking Signs, and being impressed with the Village. I believe that with the Village and LITW, M. Night is establishing a new and unique direction for himself. And if he keeps going this way, I will gladly follow.


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