39 user 25 critic

55 Steps (2017)

PG-13 | | Biography, Drama | 3 May 2018 (Germany)
2:12 | Trailer
When patients' rights lawyer Colette Hughes goes to meet her new client, Eleanor Riese, a patient in the psychiatric unit of a San Francisco hospital, she has no idea that besides taking on... See full summary »


Bille August


Mark Bruce Rosin (as Mark Rosin)
5 nominations. See more awards »





Credited cast:
Hilary Swank ... Colette Hughes
Helena Bonham Carter ... Eleanor Riese
Jeffrey Tambor ... Mort Cohen
Jonathan Kerrigan ... Dr. Bardy
Johan Heldenbergh ... Robert
Tim Plester ... Robbie
Michael Culkin ... Judge Farelly
Douglas Reith ... Judge Raymonf
Vincent Riotta ... James Adams
Richard Riddell Richard Riddell ... Arno
Anneika Rose ... Margie
Doreen Mantle ... Eleanor's Mother
Tim Ahern ... Radio Host
Florence Bell Florence Bell ... Karen Winkle
AnnaCorey ... Tiff - Jogger


When patients' rights lawyer Colette Hughes goes to meet her new client, Eleanor Riese, a patient in the psychiatric unit of a San Francisco hospital, she has no idea that besides taking on an uphill legal battle to improve treatment for mental patients in hospitals, she is meeting a woman who will make it her mission to transform Colette's workaholic life.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Biography | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some thematic elements/disturbing images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


55 Steps is based on the life of Eleanor Riese, a patient who sued for her right to refuse antipsychotic medication. Eleanor Riese was diagnosed with schizophrenia when she was 25. At the time of the trial in 1989, she was 44 and had been in and out of psychiatric hospitals for several years preceding her case. During her stay at St. Mary's Hospital in San Fransisco, she developed physical symptoms caused by antipsychotic medication to which she did not consent. See more »


Movie is set in 80's. During one scene, jogger is running through park with Pistons #33 Jersey., which was Grant Hill's Jersey. Grant Hill didn't start playing though until 1994. See more »


hospital's lawyer: Tell me, when you were a nurse, you never gave drugs to patients without their informed consent?
Colette Hughes: No. Never. I always felt it was my primary responsibility to care for the patient, not manage them for my own convenience.
See more »

User Reviews

Its roles like these that win Oscars
21 September 2017 | by michaeljtrubicSee all my reviews

Larger than life characters like this one are what talented actors are on the lookout for.

Helena Bonham Carter hit it out of the park with this.

One of two excellent films about mental illness at 2017 Tiff.

Very moving story and well defined characters.

Sadly, based on a story that is unfortunately very much true.

We were very fortunate to have the cast and real life personalities at my screening for an extensive Q&A - thanks to all for coming.

Particularly hopeful was learning that the central characters are still engaged in improving the quality of life for older people living in retirement and old-age institutions.

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Germany | Belgium



Release Date:

3 May 2018 (Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Eleanor and Colett See more »

Filming Locations:

San Francisco, California, USA See more »


Box Office


EUR7,500,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs



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