7.1/10
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The Hanging Garden (1997)

William, a once obese and depressed adolescent, is able to move past his teenage years when he moves to the city and comes out as being gay. When he returns home though, he can't cope with his memories.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ian Parsons ...
...
Troy Veinotte ...
...
Rosemary
Mark Austin ...
Preacher
...
Fletcher (as Joel S. Keller)
...
Black-Eyed Susan
Christine Dunsworth ...
Violet
Seana McKenna ...
Iris
Joan Orenstein ...
Grace
...
Ashley MacIsaac ...
Basil--Fiddler
Jocelyn Cunningham ...
Laurel
Jim Faraday ...
Mr. MacDougal
...
Teen Rosemary
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Storyline

William, a once obese and troubled teen, goes back to his family's home after being gone, without word, for ten years and finds it (and his family) haunted with his past. He had moved to the city and become a fit, well-adjusted gay man, but during his visit home, he becomes unhinged as the newly remembered reasons for his miserable adolescence come to life in each of their presents. Written by Tom Hunt Brooks <thuntb@relaypoint.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It's hard to go home... ten years after your death.

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexuality, language, and a scene of a hanging, and some teen drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

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Language:

Release Date:

7 November 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El jardín colgante  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

CAD 1,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$45,830 (USA) (7 November 1997)

Gross:

$925,756 (USA) (10 July 1998)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Grace the Nun: Father, can you come and bless this Virgin
[statue]
Grace the Nun: for the lady, please?
Iris: No no, that's not necessary, please don't bother him ...
Grace the Nun: That's what he's here for, it's included! Father, are you ready to bless the Virgin or what?
[The priest comes up to the store counter and picks up the Virgin statuette.]
Grace the Nun: Oh hang on now, she hasn't got the receipt. How many times do I tell you, don't bless the Virgin until you get the receipt!
See more »


Soundtracks

The Million You Never Made
Written and performed by Ani Difranco
© 1995 Righteous Babe Music
Courtesy of Righteous Babe Records, Inc.
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User Reviews

 
7 August 1998 | by (Montreal, Quebec) – See all my reviews

Hanging Garden is a small, intensely felt film about a family in tatters and a son whose own problems are eclipsed until he does something he can't take back. Given the film's major conceit is a breach in family fabric that can't be woven back in, magic realism is an applicable term--but only so if shot through the caustic self-wounding humour of the Maritimes, where I lived for six years. If this seems dour, then consider the take-off marriage sequence that opens the film: drunkeness, homoeroticism, Celtic music madness and four-dozen f-words. This film is a gorgeous if painful tribute to growing up in a remove that already seems past its age, in an ocean playground whose garden has gone to seed. This film was ranked, and fairly, as the best Canadian film of 1997 by the Jay Stone of the Globe & Mail (Canada's national newspaper), and if that makes Americans laugh, then consider this is a ranking ahead of Sweet Hereafter, which only made it to the Best Director Oscar Nomination and Cannes Recognition for Atom Egoyan and was also Roger Ebert's #2 film of the year. Adulations all around are deserving for this home-grown production. The film only suffers from inexperience with some actors and having to come up with a conclusion for a tale that can't logically have one. And the parents are excellent in it too, especially the mum. At the singular, crucial sequence of the film all the elements of the film - colour, symbolism, lamentation and ladyslipperknots - fuse in breathtaking splendor, and I mean so in the inhaled gasp that graces the east coast 'yes '. It still stuns me in memoriam. Four Stars * * * *


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