6.1/10
22,061
122 user 158 critic

Smart People (2008)

Trailer
1:46 | Trailer
Into the life of a widowed professor comes a new love and an unexpected visit from his adopted brother.

Director:

Noam Murro

Writer:

Mark Poirier (as Mark Jude Poirier)
3 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

15-year-old Tracey Berkowitz is naked under a shower curtain at the back of a bus, looking for her little brother Sonny, who thinks he's a dog.

Director: Bruce McDonald
Stars: Ellen Page, Zie Souwand, Maxwell McCabe-Lokos
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.2/10 X  

A hate crime on the campus of a New England college puts the school's dean in a position where she has to examine her own feelings about race and prejudice, while maintaining her administration's politically correct policies.

Director: Mark Brokaw
Stars: Sarah Jessica Parker, Miranda Richardson, Victor Rasuk
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  

A comedy centered on the life of Kate Reddy, a finance executive who is the breadwinner for her husband and two kids.

Director: Douglas McGrath
Stars: Sarah Jessica Parker, Pierce Brosnan, Kelsey Grammer
Whip It (2009)
Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

In Bodeen, Texas, an indie-rock loving misfit finds a way of dealing with her small-town misery after she discovers a roller derby league in nearby Austin.

Director: Drew Barrymore
Stars: Ellen Page, Drew Barrymore, Kristen Wiig
Peacock (2010)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A train accident in rural Nebraska gradually unveils a mystery involving the town's bank clerk.

Director: Michael Lander
Stars: Cillian Murphy, Ellen Page, Susan Sarandon
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

Gwyn Marcus has always wanted a marriage like her parents. She has just accepted the proposal of her boyfriend Matt, but she has misgivings about their future together. Her fear of ... See full summary »

Director: David Frankel
Stars: Sarah Jessica Parker, Mia Farrow, Antonio Banderas
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A 90-year-old woman, rapidly losing her memory and knowing that sooner or later her life will be over, returns to the Manitoba farmhouse she grew up in to try and make peace with her dysfunctional family.

Director: Kari Skogland
Stars: Ellen Burstyn, Christine Horne, Ellen Page
Touchy Feely (2013)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

A massage therapist is unable to do her job when stricken with a mysterious and sudden aversion to bodily contact. Meanwhile, her uptight brother's floundering dental practice receives new life when clients seek out his healing touch.

Director: Lynn Shelton
Stars: Rosemarie DeWitt, Ellen Page, Josh Pais
Love That Boy (2003)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A 20 something girl who sets out to find a boyfriend get's more than she bargained for when she falls for a 15 year old boy.

Director: Andrea Dorfman
Stars: Nadia Litz, Nikki Barnett, Adrien Dixon
Diamond Men (2000)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A thirty-years traveling diamond salesman must mentor a brash young replacement when his company downsizes him.

Director: Dan Cohen
Stars: Robert Forster, Donnie Wahlberg, Bess Armstrong
Management (2008)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A traveling art saleswoman tries to shake off a flaky motel manager who falls for her and won't leave her alone.

Director: Stephen Belber
Stars: Jennifer Aniston, Steve Zahn, Woody Harrelson
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

The time change and a case of mistaken identity result in a wonderful blind date for Trish and Parker, but is it enough to keep them together?

Director: Brian Brough
Stars: Emily Rose, Barry Watson, Casey Elliott
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dennis Quaid ... Lawrence Wetherhold
Sarah Jessica Parker ... Janet Hartigan
Thomas Haden Church ... Chuck Wetherhold
Ellen Page ... Vanessa Wetherhold
Ashton Holmes ... James Wetherhold
Christine Lahti ... Nancy
Camille Mana ... Missy
David Denman ... William
Don Wadsworth Don Wadsworth ... Hadley
Robert Haley ... Roth
Patrick Sebes ... Curtis
Kevin James Doyle Kevin James Doyle ... Rodney
Paul Huber Paul Huber ... Ben (as Paul J. Huber)
Iva Jean Saraceni ... Volunteer
Richard John Walters ... Parking Lot Attendant
Edit

Storyline

Lawrence Wetherhold is miserable and misanthropic: he's a widower, a pompous professor at Carnegie Mellon, an indifferent father to a college student and a high-school senior, and the reluctant brother of a ne'er-do-well who's come to town. A seizure and a fall send Lawrence to the emergency room where the physician, a former student of his, ends up going on a date with him. His daughter, Vanessa, lonely and friendless, who's been bonding with his brother, tries to sabotage dad and the doctor's relationship, but Lawrence is good at that without help. Is there any way these smart people can get a life? Can happiness be pursued beneath layers of irony? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Sometimes the smartest people have the most to learn

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, brief teen drug and alcohol use, and for some sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

11 April 2008 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Una familia genial See more »

Edit

Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,092,465, 13 April 2008

Gross USA:

$9,511,289

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$11,843,604
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Sarah Jessica Parker and Thomas Haden Church appear together in Divorce, HBO 2016. See more »

Goofs

Royalties from a book on literary criticism would not pay for a Stanford education. See more »

Quotes

Lawrence Wetherhold: Just go home and get some sleep, and get the perfect SAT score.
Vanessa Wetherhold: That's what I've been trying to do.
Lawrence Wetherhold: mercurial...
Vanessa Wetherhold: I learned that word in the 5th grade.
Lawrence Wetherhold: fecundity...
Vanessa Wetherhold: Ah, English is my first language.
Lawrence Wetherhold: uxorious...
Vanessa Wetherhold: That's appropriately obscure - mind you I know it. Overly fond of one's wife.
Lawrence Wetherhold: That's my girl.
Janet Hartigan: I have a good one. eft...
[...]
See more »

Connections

References Charlie Rose (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

Stitch
Written by Suze DeMarchi
Performed by The Baby Animals
Courtesy of Candirose Pty Ltd.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Familiar, but well done dramedy featuring some stellar performances
13 April 2008 | by zetesSee all my reviews

An indie comedy about a quirky family of self-hating misfits. We've seen this before, am I right? Well, so what, I say. When it's done well, I don't care too much whether the concept has been done before. And Smart People is done quite well. Dennis Quaid stars as a college professor and widower who hasn't been out with a woman since his wife died an unspecified (but long) amount of time ago. He lives alone with his daughter (Ellen Page). He has a son who goes to the same college at which he teaches and an adopted brother (Thomas Haden Church) who likes to mooch off of him. After an accident, Church moves in with Quaid and Page. Quaid also meets a former student (Sarah Jessica Parker), now a doctor, who had a crush on him. They start to date. The plot isn't anything special, but the dialogue is witty and the relationships are well observed. And this is also a case of fine actors who make something merely serviceable into something special. Quaid has never been better. My feeling about his work as an actor is that he is very uneven. He can be excellent, such as in The Right Stuff, but usually he's adequate, and often, perhaps too often, he's awful. But this is definitely one of the excellent performances. Church has kind of a sitcommy role, but that's fitting for an actor who was really good in sitcoms. He's hilarious here, too. A lot of the time, I was thinking of the movie as somewhat akin to a sitcom, but a good sitcom. There have been such things, you know. Page, fresh off her star-making turn as Juno (though Smart People was filmed earlier), is an actress I've liked in a couple of movies I disliked (Juno and Hard Candy). Finally, a movie with her that I actually like! Feels good. And she's great in it. The character is similar to Juno, but not quite so despicably precious. I like how the writer and director invite the audience to dislike all four of the major characters, at least a bit. They are recognizable people, which is, unfortunately, a rarity in movies. I liked the movie, and recommend it.


74 of 96 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 122 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed