7.0/10
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59 user 101 critic

Infinitely Polar Bear (2014)

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A manic-depressive mess of a father tries to win back his wife by attempting to take full responsibility of their two young, spirited daughters, who don't make the overwhelming task any easier.

Director:

Maya Forbes

Writer:

Maya Forbes
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mark Ruffalo ... Cam Stuart
Zoe Saldana ... Maggie Stuart
Imogene Wolodarsky ... Amelia Stuart
Ashley Aufderheide ... Faith Stuart
Nekhebet Kum Juch ... Kim
Manoah Angelo Manoah Angelo ... Thurgood
Muriel Gould Muriel Gould ... Gaga
Tod Randolph Tod Randolph ... Ruth-Ann
Beth Dixon ... Pauline Stuart
Keir Dullea ... Murray Stuart
Georgia Lyman Georgia Lyman ... Becca
Paul Elias Paul Elias ... Dick
Chris Papavasiliou ... Mr. Fabrini
Patrick Shea Patrick Shea ... Business Man 1
Liam McNeill ... Young Man 1
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Storyline

In the late 1970s, in Boston, the bipolar Cameron "Cam" Stuart lives with his wife Maggie and their daughters Amelia and Faith in an isolated house in the countryside. When Cam is fired from his job, he has a mental breakdown and Maggie is forced to institutionalize him. When he is released, he moves to a small apartment while Maggie works to support the children. She decides to apply to an MBA program to improve her income and she is accepted by Columbia University in New York. She asks Cam to take care of the girls for eighteen months and he agrees despite his fears. Maggie moves to New York and Cam is responsible for Amelia and Faith's education. Will the scheme work? Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

What it takes to keep a family together See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 June 2015 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Amor Polar See more »

Filming Locations:

Providence, Rhode Island, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,700,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$47,000, 21 June 2015, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$1,428,647, 11 October 2015
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Based on Maya Forbes' childhood with her sister. Her sister China sings the song "The Northern Line" over the end credits. See more »

Goofs

At the 00:09:43 mark, there is a scene with Cam and Maggie in the kitchen. Cam is in the process of making crepes that go from unfolded to folded and back to unfolded again. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Amelia Stuart: [narrating] My father was diagnosed manic depressive in 1967. He'd been going around Cambridge in a fake beard calling himself Jesus John Harvard. When he got better, he started working in public television in Boston. He met my mother there. He walked up and took her picture. On their first date, he took her on a driving tour of New England and told her all about his nervous breakdowns. She didn't care. She said it was a crazy time. Half the people they knew were going bananas. So ...
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Soundtracks

Down by the Riverside
Written by Snooks Eaglin (as Ford 'Snooks' Eaglin) (traditional arrangement)
Performed by Snooks Eaglin
Courtesy of Tradition Music
Courtesy of Arhoolie Records
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User Reviews

 
Bipolar blues
30 August 2015 | by tigerfish50See all my reviews

Everybody does a decent job in 'Infinitely Polar Bear' except for the screenwriter, who never develops a genuine narrative arc for her film after its brief introduction which depicts the mental breakdown of an ex-Harvard student called Cameron. This episode is followed by a couple of minutes glossing over the period he spends in institutional care, while his wife Maggie struggles to raise their two young daughters as a single mother.

The story begins for real after Cameron is released and starts living in a halfway house in the Boston suburbs. When Maggie is accepted into an MBA program in New York, she asks him to take over housekeeping and parenting duties while she's absent, and Cameron moves back into the family home with their children. Unfortunately the threesome's chaotic life together is portrayed with only slight variations in tone. The film soon develops a enervating tedium as it rolls out a seemingly endless sequence of similar scenes documenting how the two girls cope with their father's mood fluctuations. This shortcoming is exacerbated as writer/director Forbes chooses to depict only the surface symptoms of Cameron's mental condition, and declines to offer a satisfactory resolution at the end. Manic depression deserves something better than this glib treatment.


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