7.2/10
73,591
188 user 209 critic

Half Nelson (2006)

An inner-city junior high school teacher with a drug habit forms an unlikely friendship with one of his students after she discovers his secret.

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 29 wins & 46 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Tyra Kwao-Vovo ...
Rosemary Ledee ...
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Jamal (as Tristan Wilds)
Bryce Silver ...
Kaela C. Pabon ...
Erica Rivera ...
Erika (as Erika Rivera)
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Karen Chilton ...
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Storyline

Young Caucasian Dan Dunne teaches history and coaches the girls basketball team at a Brooklyn high school populated primarily by black and Hispanic students. To the chagrin of his superiors, Dan bucks the outlined curriculum of historical facts in favor of the philosophy of historical events, generally discussing the concept of dialectics. As such, he captures the imagination of his students, at least in the classroom. Outside of the classroom, Dan's life is in shambles. He has a distant but cordial relationship with his family. He uses illicit drugs rampantly. Although his former girlfriend Rachel was able to clean up her drug habit, Dan believes that rehab will not work for him. Due to a combination of these issues, he treats women poorly. Thirteen year old Drey is a student in his class and a player on his basketball team. Drey has her own problems. Her parents are divorced, with her father a virtually non-existent figure in her life and her EMT mother generally absent as she is ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Secrets don't let go.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for drug content throughout, language and some sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

22 September 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Fél Nelson  »

Box Office

Budget:

$700,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$53,983 (USA) (11 August 2006)

Gross:

$2,694,973 (USA) (8 December 2006)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although it was produced and shot in New York City, the Toronto band Broken Social Scene is featured prominently on the soundtrack. Broken Social Scene even recorded some original music for the film. See more »

Quotes

Dan: Change moves in spirals, not circles. For example, the sun goes up and then it goes down. But everytime that happens, what do you get? You get a new day. You get a new one. When you breathe, you inhale and you exhale, but every single time that you do that you're a little bit different then the one before. We're always changing. And its important to know that there are some changes you can't control and that there are others you can.
See more »

Connections

References How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (1966) See more »

Soundtracks

Capture the Flag
Written and Performed by Broken Social Scene
Published by Arts & Crafts Music
Licensed Courtesy of Arts & Crafts Records
From the album "You Forgot It in People"
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User Reviews

 
Awesome
8 July 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Anyone who has experienced addiction in their lives, whether your own or someone close to you, will find this film cutting. It is not about the reasons leading to addiction or the recovery, rather it is about the experience of the addiction in its raw reality. Even if you have not experienced addiction in your life, the story is worthwhile and the photography stellar. Ryan Gosling is the perfect portrait of a good person who got lost. His portrayal of a crack head is almost too good. The dialog is not pretentious or assuming and not overused. The story unfolds itself in a very natural manner.

Highly recommended.


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