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Side Effects (2013)

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2:18 | Trailer
A young woman's world unravels when a drug prescribed by her psychiatrist has unexpected side effects.

Director:

Steven Soderbergh

Writer:

Scott Z. Burns
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Popularity
2,087 ( 280)
5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rooney Mara ... Emily Taylor
Carmen Pelaez ... Prison Desk Guard
Marin Ireland ... Upset Visitor
Channing Tatum ... Martin Taylor
Polly Draper ... Emily's Boss
Ann Dowd ... Martin's Mother
Haraldo Alvarez Haraldo Alvarez ... Garage Attendant
Jude Law ... Dr. Jonathan Banks
James Martinez ... Police Officer at Hospital
Vladimir Versailles ... Augustin
Jacqueline Antaramian ... Desk Nurse
Michelle Vergara Moore ... Joan
Catherine Zeta-Jones ... Dr. Victoria Siebert
Katie Lowes ... Conference Organizer
David Costabile ... Carl
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Storyline

Emily Taylor, despite being reunited with her husband from prison, becomes severely depressed with emotional episodes and suicide attempts. Her psychiatrist, Jonathan Banks, after conferring with her previous doctor, eventually prescribes an experimental new medication called Ablixa. The plot thickens when the side effects of the drug lead to Emily killing her husband in a "sleepwalking" state. With Emily plea-bargained into mental hospital confinement and Dr. Banks' practice crumbling around him, the case seems closed. However, Dr. Banks cannot accept full responsibility and investigates to clear his name. What follows is a dark quest that threatens to tear what's left of his life apart even as he discovers the diabolical truth of this tragedy. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

This is your insanity on drugs. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexuality, nudity, violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Steven Soderbergh considered casting Lindsay Lohan for the role of Emily and he auditioned her three times. However, producers felt that her ongoing legal issues would disrupt the production process. Rooney Mara was eventually cast for the part. See more »

Goofs

The opening scene shows the murder scene, following Emily's bloody footprints from the kitchen to the bedroom. Later in the film, when the stabbing is depicted, Emily walks toward the bed leaving no footprints, and the camera shows a clear shot of her feet which have no blood on them. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Female Guard: Front door!
Prison Desk Guard: I can't let it in unless I see it.
Upset Visitor: I know. I know what the rules are. I'm just asking if you can make an exception.
Prison Desk Guard: There are no exceptions. That's why we have rules.
See more »

Connections

References Side Effects May Include (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Orchestral Suite No. 2 in B Minor, BWV 1067 - Menuet & Rondeau
Performed by Alice Hamlet, Jessica Nelson, and Ann Marie Yoo
Written by Johann Sebastian Bach
See more »

User Reviews

 
Morally ambiguous characters in a deceptive, complex thriller plot
9 February 2013 | by napierslogsSee all my reviews

In "Side Effects", Emily (Rooney Mara) is feeling hopeless, suffering from prolonged effects of abandonment issues, unsure how to proceed in her life. Her husband, Martin (Channing Tatum) has just come home from prison, serving time for insider trading. But Emily doesn't know what she should be feeling; Emily doesn't know how to feel what she should be feeling. Psychiatrist Dr. Jonathan Banks (Jude Law) is exactly what the doctor ordered.

For those of us who watched "Contagion" (2011) and wanted to focus only on Jude Law's morally ambiguous blogger, Alan Krumwiede, we have finally gotten our wish. Law's morally ambiguous Dr. Jon Banks and Mara's psychologically ambiguous Emily are the only two main characters. There is only one story to follow.

It starts off with some strange camera angles (Steven Soderbergh serving as his own director of photography as he has for the majority of his films) but then settles down as a thriller, or what will become a thriller once we get to know the characters better. Emily has tried many antidepressants in the past but most leave her with undesired side effects: nausea, dizziness, or lack of a sex drive. Won't Dr. Banks please prescribe her something different? Sure, how about Ablixa, the new medication which Dr. Banks is being paid to try out on patients.

And although we now think we know in which character evil lies, we do not. Dr. Jonathan Banks is singularly the most complicated, interestingly created character in recent times. He's modern, selfish, compassionate, professionally-oriented, family-oriented, has respect for the legal system, and will go to extremes to distinguish between right and wrong. He's the focus of this character-centric, film noir thriller which uses Mara's Emily as the vehicle for the plot.

A crime is committed. It's bad, really bad. But the question is not who did it, the question is, who is guilty? In answering that question the film weaves from deception through twist to deception, never ceasing our questions of what is morally right, what is morally wrong and who is guilty? The screenplay is incredibly well-written, creating characters that amaze us, disappoint us and deceive us all the while being a part of an interesting and complex story. The dialogue fits with that theme, using words like "hopeless" to tie multiple characters together - conceptually not physically.

It's more of an edge-of-your-mind thriller rather than an edge-of-your- seat thriller. Never really scared, always questioning the moral and psychological behaviour of these characters. The ending takes some strange, sexually-charged turns, and perhaps a bit more conclusive than I was originally expecting, but don't worry, you can still question where the line is between right and wrong and when each character crossed it.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

8 February 2013 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Bitter Pill See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$9,303,145, 10 February 2013

Gross USA:

$32,172,757

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$63,414,135
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | Datasat

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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