Far from Heaven


Far from Heaven

Infobox Film
name = Far From Heaven


caption = Theatrical release poster
director = Todd Haynes
producer = Jody Patton
Christine Vachon
writer = Todd Haynes
narrator =
starring = Julianne Moore
Dennis Quaid
Dennis Haysbert
Patricia Clarkson
Ryan Ward
music = Elmer Bernstein
cinematography = Edward Lachman
editing = James Lyons
distributor = Focus Features
released = September 1 2002
runtime = 107 mins
country = France
United States
language = English
budget = $13,500,000 (estimated)
preceded_by =
followed_by =
website =
amg_id = 1:267273
imdb_id = 0297884

"Far from Heaven" is a 2002 film written and directed by Todd Haynes and starring Julianne Moore, Dennis Quaid, Ryan Ward, Dennis Haysbert, and Patricia Clarkson.

The film tells the story of Cathy Whitaker, a 1950s housewife, living in suburban Hartford as she sees her seemingly perfect life begin to fall apart. It is done in the style of a 1950s, Douglas Sirk film (especially "All That Heaven Allows" and "Imitation of Life"), dealing with complex contemporary issues such as race, sexuality and class.

The film was nominated for several Academy Awards: for Best Actress in a Leading Role (Julianne Moore), Best Original Screenplay (Todd Haynes), Best Cinematography (Edward Lachman), and Best Original Score (Elmer Bernstein).

Plot

Set in suburban 1950s Connecticut, the film is about Cathy Whitaker (Moore), the perfect wife, mother, and homemaker. Cathy is married to Frank (Quaid), a successful executive at Magnatech. The film begins with Cathy preparing for her annual party with her best friend, Eleanor Fine (Clarkson). One day, Cathy spies an unknown black man walking through her garden. He turns out to be Raymond Deagon (Haysbert), the son of Cathy's late gardener.

Frank is soon being forced to stay late at the office, swamped with work. One evening, however, we see him enter a gay bar. Meanwhile, Cathy and Raymond develop a friendship. On one particular night, when Frank is working late, Cathy decides to wrap up his dinner and take it to him. She walks in on him passionately kissing another man. Frank confesses having had "problems" as a young man, and agrees to see psychiatrist Dr. Bowman (James Rebhorn) in the hope of being "converted back" to heterosexuality. His relationship with Cathy is irreparably strained, however, and he turns to alcohol. Unable to comprehend the destruction of her marriage, Cathy turns to Raymond for comfort. She sees him at an art show, where she spends much of her day talking to him, setting the town ablaze with gossip.

As Cathy sees her once idyllic world falling apart, she begins to fall in love with Raymond, and their evident relationship has unpleasant consequences for him and his daughter. At the same time, Frank, unable to suppress his homosexual desires, falls in love with another man and seeks a divorce from Cathy.

Cast

*Julianne Moore - Cathy Whitaker
*Dennis Quaid - Frank Whitaker
*Dennis Haysbert - Raymond Deagan
*Patricia Clarkson - Eleanor Fine
*Ryan Ward - David Whitaker
*Viola Davis - Sybil
*James Rebhorn - Dr. Bowman
*Celia Weston - Mona Lauder
*Lindsay Andretta - Janice Whitaker
*Jordan Puryear - Sarah Deagan

tyle

"Far from Heaven" is made entirely in the style of many '50s films, notably those of Douglas Sirk. Haynes created color pallettes for every scene in the film and was very careful and particular in his choices. Haynes emphasizes experience with color, in such scenes as one in which Cathy, Eleanor, and their friends are all dressed in reds, oranges, yellows, browns, and greens. Haynes also plays with the color green, using it to light forbidden and mysterious scenes. He employs this effect both in the scene where Frank visits the gay bar and when Cathy goes to the restaurant in the black part of town.

Haynes also uses shots and angles that would have been standard in Sirk's films and era. Cinematographer Edward Lachman created the 1950s "look" with the same type of lighting equipment (incandescent), lighting techniques, and lens filters that would have been used in a 1950s-era melodrama. The script employs over-the-top, melodramatic dialogue, and Elmer Bernstein's score is reminiscent of those he had composed 40 and 50 years earlier.

In the commentary, Haynes was also influenced by Rainer Werner Fassbinder's film "". Like Fassbinder's film, Haynes portrays feelings of alienation and awkwardness. For example, instead of cutting to the next scene, Haynes would linger on a character for a few seconds longer than comfortable to the viewer, just like the technique Fassbinder used. Also, there are a few scenes which are an obvious homage to "Ali" like the scene where Cathy and Raymond are dancing at a Black diner (in which Cathy feels very awkward) and the line "You're beautiful" is also a direct homage to "Ali".

Awards

"Far From Heaven" was nominated for 4 Academy Awards as well as winning 71 other awards and being nominated for another 30. In the Fourth Annual "Village Voice" Film Critics' Poll, "Far From Heaven" was voted the best picture of 2002.

Notable awards

Academy Awards

Nominations
*Best Actress in a Leading Role - Julianne Moore
*Best Original Screenplay - Todd Haynes
*Best Cinematography - Edward Lachman
*Best Original Score - Elmer Bernstein

Chicago Film Critics Association Awards

Wins
*Best Picture
*Best Director - Todd Haynes
*Best Actress - Julianne Moore
*Best Supporting Actor - Dennis Quaid
*Best Cinematography - Edward Lachman
*Best Original Score - Elmer BernsteinNominations
*Best Supporting Actress - Patricia Clarkson
*Best Screenplay - Todd Haynes

Golden Globes

Nominations
*Best Actress in a Leading Role (Drama) - Julianne Moore
*Best Supporting Actor - Dennis Quaid
*Best Screenplay - Todd Haynes
*Best Original Score - Elmer Bernstein

Independent Spirit Awards

Wins
*Best Feature
*Best Actress -Julianne Moore
*Best Supporting Actor - Dennis Quaid
*Best Director - Todd Haynes
*Best Cinematography - Edward Lachman

National Board of Review

Wins
*Best Actress - Julianne Moore

New York Film Critics Circle Awards

Wins
*Best Film
*Best Director - Todd Haynes
*Best Supporting Actor - Dennis Quaid
*Best Supporting Actress - Patricia Clarkson
*Best Cinematography - Edward Lachman

Online Film Critics Society Awards

Wins
*Best Actress - Julianne Moore
*Best Supporting Actor - Dennis Quaid
*Best Original Screenplay - Todd Haynes
*Best Cinematography - Edward Lachman
*Best Art Direction
*Best Costume Design - Sandy Powell
*Best Original Score - Elmer BernsteinNominations
*Best Picture
*Best Director - Todd Haynes

Screen Actors Guild Awards

Nominations
*Best Actress - Julianne Moore
*Best Supporting Actor - Dennis Quaid

Writers Guild of America Awards

Nominations
*Best Original Screenplay - Todd Haynes

oundtrack

*"See: Far from Heaven (soundtrack).

ee also

* Queer Cinema
* Douglas Sirk

External links

*imdb title|id=0297884|title=Far from Heaven


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