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Life During Wartime (2009)

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Friends, family, and lovers struggle to find love, forgiveness, and meaning in an almost war-torn world riddled with comedy and pathos.

Director:

Todd Solondz

Writer:

Todd Solondz
3 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Shirley Henderson ... Joy
Michael Kenneth Williams ... Allen
Roslyn Ruff ... Waitress
Allison Janney ... Trish
Michael Lerner ... Harvey
Dylan Riley Snyder ... Timmy
Ciarán Hinds ... Bill
Renée Taylor ... Mona
Rebecca Chiles Rebecca Chiles ... Hostess
Paul Reubens ... Andy
Emma Hinz ... Chloe
Charlotte Rampling ... Jacqueline
Ally Sheedy ... Helen
Gaby Hoffmann ... Wanda
Rich Pecci ... Mark
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Storyline

Separated from her incarcerated husband Bill (Hinds), Trish (Janney) is about to be married again. Bill is a pedophile, so Trish couldn't be more excited to have Harvey (Lerner), a "normal" father figure for her two sons. But when Bill is released from prison and the boys finally meet their future stepdad, the family is forced to decide whether to forgive or to forget. Trish's sister, the virginal, angelic Joy (Henderson), is also haunted by ghosts of lovers past. On leave from her degenerate husband, Allen (Williams), and her job at a New Jersey correctional facility, Joy unwittingly leaves behind a trail of shame and exposed secrets wherever she goes. In one of the film's most stylized sequences, the image of Joy walking the dark streets of Miami in her nightgown maintains her innocence against a backdrop of self-affliction and desire. Written by Production

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexual content, brief nudity, and language including some disturbing dialogue | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 April 2010 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Forgiveness See more »

Filming Locations:

Puerto Rico See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$30,507, 25 July 2010, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$278,821, 19 September 2010
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Werc Werk Works See more »
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

A sequel to Todd Solondz's movie Happiness (1998), but with entirely re-cast characters. See more »

Quotes

Trish: Are you seeing anyone?
Mark Wiener: No, I'm more focused on China. Everything else is history. It's just a question of time.
See more »

Connections

Follows Happiness (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Messiah, HWV56. Part I: Duet. He shall feed his flock like a shepherd
Composed by George Frideric Handel
Performed by RIAS symphony orchestra and RIAS chamber chorus
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User Reviews

 
Reflections on "Happiness"
1 August 2010 | by M. J ArocenaSee all my reviews

Todd Solondz is unique and so are his films. He forces you to look through an angle that we systematically ignore. There is an element of tenderness that permeates the darkest of corners and compassion emerges, limpid, clear even rational. This is, if possible, a sequel to his masterful "Happiness" The pain is still palpable but there is a hint of hope, China or not China. "I don't care about freedom or democracy, I care about my dad" Yes, I hear you kid. In the midst of it all, I hear you. Added bonuses: Cieran Hids as a scary, powerful presence. Allison Janney, one of the best American actresses working today. Charlotte Rampling makes an appearance as a sort of escapee from an erotic nightmare and don't you dare ignore or let this film pass you by. Todd Solondz is a great, startling American poet.


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