6.7/10
4,636
44 user 82 critic

Is Anybody There? (2008)

PG-13 | | Drama | 15 May 2009 (USA)
Trailer
2:12 | Trailer
Set in 1980s seaside England, this is the story of Edward, an unusual ten-year-old boy growing up in an old people's home run by his parents. While his mother struggles to keep the family ... See full summary »

Director:

John Crowley

Writer:

Peter Harness
2 nominations. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Bill Milner ... Edward
Anne-Marie Duff ... Mum
Ralph Riach ... Clive
Linzey Cocker ... Tanya
Elizabeth Spriggs ... Prudence
Leslie Phillips ... Reg
Sylvia Syms ... Lilian
Rosemary Harris ... Elsie
David Morrissey ... Dad
Thelma Barlow Thelma Barlow ... Ena
Peter Vaughan ... Bob
Carl McCrystal ... Undertaker 1
Andrew Turner Andrew Turner ... Undertaker 2
Michael Caine ... Clarence
Ollie Kaiper-Leach Ollie Kaiper-Leach ... Barry (as Oliver Leach)
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Storyline

Set in 1980s seaside England, this is the story of Edward, an unusual ten-year-old boy growing up in an old people's home run by his parents. While his mother struggles to keep the family business afloat, and his father copes with the on-set of a mid-life crisis, Edward is busy tape-recording the elderly residents to try and discover what happens when they die. Increasingly obsessed with ghosts and the afterlife, Edward's is a rather lonely existence until he meets Clarence, the latest recruit to the home, a retired magician with a liberating streak of anarchy. This movie tells the story of this odd couple, a boy and an old man, facing life together, with Edward learning to live in the moment, and Clarence coming to terms with the past.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for language including sexual references, and some disturbing images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Producer David Heyman was inside the Body Bag being taken down the Stairlift at the start of the film See more »

Goofs

Some think the father's mustache at the party is a continuity error as he shaved it off that morning. However, it is a fancy dress party and the father is clearly wearing a fake mustache to go with his costume. See more »

Quotes

Edward: Sorry for setting the fire before. Sorry I put a lot of talcum on the floor in there. Sorry for not saying when you ran me over. And that time I put dirt on your head.
Clarence: That's an awful lot of things to be sorry for at such a young age.
Edward: Sorry.
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Connections

Features World of Strange Powers (1985) See more »

Soundtracks

Prelude to the Affair
Written by Paul Thomson
Published by Air-Edel Associates Ltd
Licensed courtesy of Air-Edel Associates Ltd
See more »

User Reviews

 
Naivety and wisdom all rolled into one
25 May 2009 | by jerome-delannoySee all my reviews

Not knowing what to expect of this film we were pleasantly surprised, relieved in fact. One critic had rated it as 'morbid' – just what we needed on a bank holiday afternoon – when in fact it was quite uplifting.

There was no waiting around, Cowley took the audience directly to the sitting room of the elderly peoples home. You didn't know whether to laugh or cry at the antics of some of the elderly residents – an ex-dancer, a drunkard, war veteran – who, as interesting as they looked, were never discussed in much detail. They were 'props', clichés or as Edward would put it, 'pains in the backside'.

Indeed, we are made to see the residents as Edward did. Their antics are in fact, annoyances, enough to drive a wedge between him and his parents. Edward, who celebrates his 11th birthday in the film, is focused solely on finding out what happens after death. He played the part beautifully with such naivety and sincerity.

The arrival of Clarence to the home would change Edward more than he would think and vice versa. It was nice to see the relationship grow between the two. For the very first time, Edward would begin to look upon one of the residents as a grandfather figure, someone who would teach him new tricks and to live for the living, not for the dead. Not only did Clarence become a grandfather to Edward but also a friend. There are some great snapshots throughout of the two of them.

Overall, it was a nice film that taught us to live for the moment and that regrets can eat you up inside. It also reveals truths about residential homes: 'you live all your life on your own and then someone thinks it's a good idea to put you with complete strangers'. We must remember that despite having their age in common, elderly people are all unique and should be treated so. Despite being set in the 1980's, the colours and styles all depicting this era wonderfully, these 'lessons in life' are as true today as they were back then.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 May 2009 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Is Anybody There? See more »

Filming Locations:

Hythe, Kent, England, UK See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$46,209, 19 April 2009

Gross USA:

$2,026,756

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$3,368,300
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (DeLuxe)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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