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Adoration (2008)

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For his French-class assignment, a high school student weaves his family history in a news story involving terrorism, and goes on to invite an Internet audience in on the resulting controversy.

Director:

Atom Egoyan

Writer:

Atom Egoyan
3 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Devon Bostick ... Simon
Rachel Blanchard ... Rachel
Louca Tassone Louca Tassone ... Young Simon
Kenneth Welsh ... Morris
Yuval Daniel Yuval Daniel ... Security Agent
Scott Speedman ... Tom
Jeremy Wright Jeremy Wright ... Delivery Guy
Arsinée Khanjian ... Sabine
Noam Jenkins ... Sami
Thomas Hauff ... Nick
Martin Roach ... Car Owner
Ieva Lucs Ieva Lucs ... Berating Woman
Katie Boland ... Hannah
Hailee Sisera Hailee Sisera ... Jennifer
Lia Bellefontaine Lia Bellefontaine ... Student On-Line
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Storyline

Simon, a Toronto high school student, has been raised by his maternal Uncle Tom since Simon's parents, Rachel and Sami, died in a car accident eight years ago. Tom, a tow truck driver, decided to move to the city into Rachel's house and assume the mortgage, something he could ill afford, largely not to disrupt Simon's life, but equally to get away from his and Rachel's father, Morris, an openly bigoted man. That upbringing has made Tom a sullen and angry man. Morris only recently passed away. Rachel and Sami met when she, a violinist, brought her instrument in to be serviced, Sami the repairman. Simon now owns his mother's expensive violin, which Tom would like to sell to help pay the mortgage and Simon's imminent university tuition. One day at school, Simon's French teacher Sabine reads a French newspaper story from several years ago as a translation exercise for the class, the story about a pregnant woman traveling to Israel, her then boyfriend who, unknown to her, planted a bomb in... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Canada

Language:

English | French | Hebrew

Release Date:

24 April 2009 (Canada) See more »

Also Known As:

Adoração See more »

Filming Locations:

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,700,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$39,358, 10 May 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$293,614, 11 October 2009
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Atom Egoyan's 12th feature film. See more »

Goofs

In the scene at the end of the film at his grandfather's empty lake house, Simon first unloaded the wooden Christmas figures from his duffel bag onto a pile of firewood on the end of the dock. He then went into his grandfather's workshop and sawed the scroll off of his mother's violin. With his phone, he took a picture of the severed scroll in his hand with the dock in the background, but the wooden Christmas figures now appear in the middle of the dock. See more »

Quotes

Daniel: What do you think, can we get a rain check for martyrdom?
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Overreaching and a bit confusing,..but still a very, VERY good film.
5 January 2010 | by MetalAngelSee all my reviews

Atom Egoyan's latest feat, "Adoration", features among Egoyan's most profound work, and it is also one of the best independent or underground films you can rent this year. Now, you might be wondering how I can call a film by Atom Egoyan 'underground', when he's one of the most renowned directors in the world. It's precisely the same question I asked a fellow critic of mine who recommended it, and now that I've seen it, I have the answer: It features a large cast of 'unknowns' (with the possible exception of Scott Speedman), a large crew of unknowns, it features a small budget, it's artsy...but most of all, it aspires and tries to be overwhelming at its impact and appealing to the masses, and it fails to be either at the end. Not even the seal of recognition from the Cannes Film Festival in 2008 saved this film from being on a short release during the winter of 2009 and from finally emerging on DVD, at the end of the same year.

But please, bear with me. The film deals with a teenager called Simon (Devon Bostick) who's written a fictional monologue where his father left his pregnant mother on a plane and hid a bomb on her carry-on bag, which is discovered by the authorities and which foils his plans of terrorism. Prompted by Sabine, his French teacher (Arsinée Khanjian), he makes his classmates believe the story is true, and publishes it on an Internet chat room which makes thousands of bloggers go crazy on the subjects of terrorism, victims, love, recognition, the value of life, etc...all of that, prompted by his story. Simon is scared to find out how much of his fictional story is true, since for some reason it has a familiar ring with some images of his past. So he decides to make a video diary where he films the bloggers who heatedly comment on his story, and who provide him with the necessary 'mind fuel' to deduct whether his father actually WAS an assassin, whether his mother was his victim, whether his grandfather (Kenneth Welsh) polluted their memory and whether his uncle (Scott Speedman) is hiding something.

I know, it sounds like a complicated storyline...and it is. There are infinite separate plots (each character has ulterior motives, an agenda, and a haunting past which establishes their present personalities), and the film is given to us in puzzle pieces, with the separate scenes jumping from present, to future to past...to imaginary present, future and past...all of this to a point where you won't understand a thing you see on screen if you're not fully concentrated. I was, thankfully, and I found it easy to keep up with so many plot lines, and as the film progressed and I discovered more details and secrets every second, I felt my heart pounding and my palms sweating from the tension and the heavy drama on screen. THAT'S where the film is genius; on the way it uses an intelligent and complicated plot perfectly, and on how it reaches over to the audience.

The film IS good, it is very very good, actually, but it tries to exceed its own potential, giving way to a large amount of unfinished plot twists, undeveloped characters and confusing situations. Stories begin to fit in together, resolutions are being taken, and by the end of the film the principal characters have all found catharsis in their own way...but what about the infinite number of other characters the film presents? They're all left behind, with no completion whatsoever. SO many topics that were effectively handled and most of them weren't developed! The main characters (Simon, the French teacher, the uncle, the grandfather and the parents) have incredible depth, and halfway through the film you're convinced that this might just be THE deepest and most intelligent film of the decade...but soon after that, the film is over and only the superficial plot lines where resolved, only the surface of the characters came full circle. It's one of those movies where the credits start rolling and you say "It's over?! But what about the...", then you start making so any questions, and you start coming up with so many answers, all of them giving birth to more questions...until you have no idea what you're even coming up with.

Perhaps this was Egoyan's point, to keep us thinking and thinking until our thoughts seem to have detached from the film itself; it's a good thing to do- to have your public ponder so much- but it's bad when it affects the movie. Like I said, it tries to overreach, it goes literally everywhere with so much plot that OBVIOUSLY there are going to be mistakes and plot lines will be left unsolved. But even through these flaws, the film delivers interesting messages, it gives us a couple of memorable characters and a story (however complicated it may be) that entertains and envelops the viewer. And even if the balance of the film slowly shattered at the end, for most of the duration it was maintained, giving the viewer a very rewarding hour and forty minutes of viewing experience.

If you love artsy, independent films- see it. If you're tired of mainstream Hollywood brainless flicks and want something new- see it. If you love Atom Egoyan or are planning to introduce him into your cinema knowledge- see it. If you're expecting to see a paramount in independent cinema that transcends our expectations on the seventh art- skip it. This is very good, but not great. Nevertheless, I still recommend it.

Rating: 3 stars out of 4!


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