The HoursJanuary 24, 2003
The story of how the novel "Mrs. Dalloway" affects three generations of women, all of whom, in one way or another, have had to deal with suicide in their lives.
Release Year: 2002
Rating: 7.5/10 (58,020 voted)
Critic's Score: 81/100
Stars: Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman, Julianne Moore
In 1951, Laura Brown, a pregnant housewife, is planning a party for her husband, but she can't stop reading the novel 'Mrs. Dalloway'. Clarissa Vaughn, a modern woman living in present times is throwing a party for her friend Richard, a famous author dying of AIDS. These two stories are simultaneously linked to the work and life of Virginia Woolf, who's writing the novel mentioned before.
Writers: Michael Cunningham, David Hare
(as Lyndsay Marshal)
John C. Reilly
Our lives. Our story.
Paramount [United States] |
Release Date: 24 January 2003
Filming Locations: Biltmore Hotel – 1200 Anastasia Avenue, Coral Gables, Florida, USA
Box Office Details
Opening Weekend: $338,622
(29 December 2002)
Did You Know?
Nicole Kidman is the third person and first actress to win an Oscar for a role played with a false nose. The other two are José Ferrer, for
Cyrano de Bergerac, and Lee Marvin for
In Clarissa's first visit to Richard's apartment, she gathers up some garbage and then drops the bags on the floor. Later when she opens the apartment door to leave, the garbage bags are already outside the apartment in the hall.
It's on this day. This day of all days. Her fate becomes clear to her.
The Tragedy of Baking a Cake
If you have read any of the other reviews on this page, you have probably
figured out "The Hours" is not the easy, mainstream film it was made out
be by the ads and the reviews. Starring three of today's most popular
leading actresses, winner of some Golden Globe awards, based on a Pulitzer
Prize winning novel, and the recipient of numerous rave reviews; it would
seem to be a film that would appeal to a lot of people.
"The Hours" is not a regular Hollywood type of drama film. It has more in
common with Ingmar Bergman films than with "Terms of Endearment." I think
the thing that most people are having problems with is that the film does
not explain what takes place or the significance of the context of what
takes place. Things happen and it is up to the viewer to decide what it
means. This is a controversial film and people will not only argue about
whether or not the film is worthwhile, but they can also debate what
takes place during the film. How a person interprets this film says more
about the person than the film.
The film follows a single day in the lives of three women in different
periods. During this day, each of them makes a decision that will affect
the rest of their life.
I felt the film improved upon the book by bringing more clarity into the
decisions of each character. Also, some of the most memorable lines and
scenes in the film did not exist in the book.
While I would normally be the last person in the world to say anything
positive about Phillip Glass, his score is evocative of the relentlessness
of time. This is accentuated by the ticking of the clock throughout the
film. The ethereal music also helps tie the three storylines together, to
make it seem as if they are happening simultaneously.
I think a lot of people were taken off-guard by this film because they
expecting a more standard type of drama. Also, the PG-13 rating implies a
lighter subject matter than is actually in the film. Just as a warning:
There is crying, suicide, and women kissing women. Even though the
and language is mild and there are no sex or nudity in the film, it should
have probably been given an R rating because of the extreme emotion
displayed in the film. Emotionally unstable people should probably not
As I said earlier, people will interpret this film differently since
are not spelled out for them. For the record, I did not think all three
women were suffering from clinical depression as suggested by some people.
Virginia's malaise would seem to fit the description of schizophrenia
than clinical depression. Clarissa was suffering from regret over a
decision she made thirty years previous and the feeling that she will
experience that happiness again. That does not necessarily mean she is
clinically depressed. Laura is the depressed one and she makes a decision
to handle that depression the way she thinks is best for her. Also, I do
not feel Virginia was either incestuous or a lesbian. I think she was
expressing her desperation through her disease and it came out in a
There is no doubt in my mind that "The Hours" is a great film. I only
recommend it to people who are up to the challenge of thinking about the
film long after they have left the theater and deciding about what it
It is not a film for everybody but I felt it was worth the