6.5/10
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Heaven Knows What (2014)

R | | Drama | 29 May 2015 (USA)
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Harley loves Ilya. He gives her life purpose and sets her passion ablaze. So, when he asks her to prove her love by slitting her wrists, she obliges with only mild hesitation, perhaps because of her other all-consuming love: heroin.

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(inspired by a book written by), | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Isaac Adams ...
Isaac
Diana Singh ...
Diana
Benjamin Hampton ...
Antoine
Manny Aguila ...
Evan
...
Erica (as Eléonore Hendricks)
Yuri Pleskun ...
Tommy, Drug Dealer
Maynard Nicholl ...
Maynard
Brian Hodges ...
Brian
Misty Mccall ...
Misty
Mike Patellis ...
Marcos, Mike's Supplier
Aaron Keller ...
Hasidic Man
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Storyline

Harley loves Ilya. He gives her life purpose and sets her passion ablaze. So, when he asks her to prove her love by slitting her wrists, she obliges with only mild hesitation, perhaps because of her other all-consuming love: heroin.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for drug use throughout, pervasive language, disturbing and violent images, sexuality, and graphic nudity | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

29 May 2015 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Amor, Drogas e Nova York  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$16,862 (USA) (31 May 2015)

Gross:

$80,015 (USA) (2 August 2015)
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Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
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Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The lead, Arielle Holmes lived on the streets of NYC prior to this film and after being discovered by the filmmakers Ben & Josh Safdie, she wrote and texted them almost every situation and story she experienced via her heroin addiction, her tragic relationship with Ilya and life on the streets of NYC. When the film began shooting, Arielle Holmes got clean and remained clean throughout the shoot. See more »

Goofs

In the scene after Ilya hitchhikes, he is seen dropping the paper surrounding his DayQuil bottle on the floor. In the next scene when he drinks from it again, the paper is still surrounding the bottle. See more »

Quotes

Skully: You ain't gettin' rid of me, I ain't going nowhere.
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Connections

Features Hellraiser: Revelations (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Snowflakes Are Dancing
Performed by Isao Tomita
Courtesy of Sony Classical
By arrangement with Sony Music Licensing
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User Reviews

 
Captivatingly abrasive but too thematically aimless.
15 September 2015 | by (Suffolk, England) – See all my reviews

There are few films as unforgiving as Heaven Knows What. With its blistering soundtrack and rough in-your-face photography, you're either captivated or eyeing the exit. The Safdie brothers fictionalised retelling of Arielle Holmes life on the street, as played impressively by herself, is relentlessly bleak. The only joy is securing a dose of heroin. It doesn't keep track of names or days, just showing how she survives moment-to-moment. That kind of loose narrative thread void of character backstories can work if it holds together thematically, but Heaven Knows What isn't clear what it's trying to say besides showing the life of an addict. It latches onto hints of a theme of unrequited love, as demonstrated by Holmes' toxic relationship with her easy-to-loathe on-off-again boyfriend Ilya. Not that he has to be likable - the devastating first act where he encourages her to commit suicide is the film's finest stretch - but he's so loathsome that he drag the film down with him. Holmes has her own moments of venom, though it's balanced with vulnerability. Perhaps his purpose thematically is that he represents her relationship with heroin, but that's too on-the-nose and flimsy to bolster the film's quality. Instead, the film hinges on that docu-style commitment from both the directors and the cast. Certainly an emotionally exhausting experience with the aesthetics, I just wish it was more thoroughly explored on paper first.

7/10


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