6.7/10
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20 user 49 critic

Medicine for Melancholy (2008)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 7 March 2008 (USA)
Trailer
2:03 | Trailer
Twenty-four hours in the tentative relationship of two young San Franciscans also dealing with the conundrum of being a minority in a rapidly gentrifying city.

Director:

Barry Jenkins

Writer:

Barry Jenkins
3 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Wyatt Cenac ... Micah
Tracey Heggins Tracey Heggins ... Jo'
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Elizabeth Acker Elizabeth Acker ... Housing Rights Committee Member
Melissa Bisagni ... Cassandra Jay
DeMorge Brown DeMorge Brown ... MOAD Voice
Powell DeGrange Powell DeGrange ... Housing Rights Committee Member
Chida Emeka Chida Emeka ... Housing Rights Committee Member
John Friedberg John Friedberg ... Housing Rights Committee Member
Dana Julius Dana Julius ... Housing Rights Committee Member
Ondine Kilker Ondine Kilker ... Housing Rights Committee Member
Erin Klenow Erin Klenow ... Museum Staffer
Phoebe Chi Ching Kwok Phoebe Chi Ching Kwok ... Housing Rights Committee Member
Tommi Avicolli Mecca Tommi Avicolli Mecca ... Housing Rights Committee Member
Adam Moskowitz Adam Moskowitz ... Housing Rights Committee Member
Jennifer Sanchez Jennifer Sanchez ... Housing Rights Committee Member
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Storyline

Twenty-four hours in the tentative relationship of two young San Franciscans also dealing with the conundrum of being a minority in a rapidly gentrifying city.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A night they barely remember becomes a day they'll never forget.

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 March 2008 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Medicine for Melancholy See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$13,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$12,625, 1 February 2009

Gross USA:

$111,551

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$111,551
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Strike Anywhere, Bandry See more »
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

Shortly after completing the film, a friend suggested to writer/director Barry Jenkins to watch Damien Chazelle's film Guy and Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench (2009) given it was another black and white contemporary film gaining momentum among the indie circuit. Ironically, a friend of Damien Chazelle's told him to watch Medicine for Melancholy (2008) shortly after completing his film. Both directors were up for several Academy Awards in 2017 for their films Moonlight (2016) and La La Land (2016) respectively and only discovered this after speaking to one another during The Hollywood Report's Oscar's Roundtable. See more »

Crazy Credits

Each song in the soundtrack appears in the credits with a still frame from the part of the movie where it was used. See more »

Connections

References Mister Rogers' Neighborhood (1968) See more »

Soundtracks

Ex.Oh
Written & performed by Ivana XL
Courtesy of Ivana Carrescia
See more »

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User Reviews

Excellent
17 June 2009 | by jamesdamnbrownSee all my reviews

You couldn't make a movie that looks more like my day to day life in San Francisco than this. Telling the story of two black twenty-somethings who meet and have a one night stand, they start off the morning after in Bernal Heights, walk over to Noe Valley for breakfast, hop a cab to the Marina to drop her off, then he heads back to his studio on Geary at Hyde, two blocks from where I once rented a nearly identical apartment, down to the rotating walk-in closet door that once sported a Murphy bed. The couple meet again and head to the Museum of the African Diaspora on Mission and then over to Yerba Buena Gardens to ride the merry-go-round, both a block away from where I work. Later that night they buy stuff for dinner at Rainbow Grocery then head down to the Knockout to dance while my pal DJ Paul Paul spins 45s although his oldies singles are overdubbed on the film's soundtrack with obscure but cool indie rock. But aside from the pleasure of seeing all my usual haunts captured on on film, or digital video rather, Medicine For Melancholy is a smart movie that captures not only the vibe of life in downtown San Francisco, but also the subtleties of the changing ethnic and economic demographics of the second most expensive city in the country. The guy—played by Wyatt Cenac, an occasional correspondent on John Stewart's Daily Show—has a deadpan quarrelsomeness that is occasionally hilarious, because not only is he concerned about the ongoing disenfranchisement of the black community in the city, he's also bugged about the pending disenfranchisement of himself from the girl's pants once her live-in boyfriend returns to town. Her boyfriend, by the way, is white, which Cenac's character tries to elevate to a political issue because of his looming romantic frustration, but she's not having it, which leads to one of the film's best exchanges as they argue about the role race plays in forming their sense of self-identity. Lots of clever relationship stuff, like surreptitiously scoping out each other's MySpace profiles and sharp naturalistic dialogue as they continually negotiate and renegotiate the emotional boundaries and ending point of their one day affair. And maybe the scene with the housing activists meeting was a digression, but you know what, if you live here that stuff is very important and on everybody's mind, and it fits nicely given the context of the film whether you like it or not. Highly recommended.


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