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Losing Isaiah (1995)

R | | Drama | 17 March 1995 (USA)
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The natural and adoptive mothers of a young boy are involved in a bitter, controversial custody battle.

Director:

Stephen Gyllenhaal

Writers:

Seth Margolis (novel), Naomi Foner (screenplay)
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jessica Lange ... Margaret Lewin
Halle Berry ... Khaila Richards
David Strathairn ... Charles Lewin
Cuba Gooding Jr. ... Eddie Hughes
Daisy Eagan ... Hannah Lewin
Marc John Jefferies ... Isaiah
Samuel L. Jackson ... Kadar Lewis
Joie Lee ... Marie
Regina Taylor ... Gussie
LaTanya Richardson Jackson ... Caroline Jones (as LaTanya Richardson)
Jacqueline Brookes ... Judge Silbowitz
Donovon Ian H. McKnight Donovon Ian H. McKnight ... Amir
Rikkia A. Smith Rikkia A. Smith ... Josie
Paulette McDaniels Paulette McDaniels ... Ethel
Velma Austin Velma Austin ... Rehab Leader
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Storyline

An African-American baby, abandoned by his crack addicted mother is adopted by a white social worker and her husband. Several years later, the baby's mother finds out her son is not dead, as she thought before and goes to court to get him back. Written by Cyndi Kessler <ckessler@hooked.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Who decides what makes a mother?

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for drug related material and brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 March 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Les chemins de l'amour See more »

Filming Locations:

Chicago, Illinois, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$17,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$7,603,766

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$900,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Originally shot for television. See more »

Goofs

Khaila could not have known that Isaiah "liked to play with blocks", since she had not had him with her while he was growing up from infancy, and he'd always just sullenly moped around whenever he was at her apartment and never wanted to play or interact with the other children at day-care, so Khaila would never have seen Isaiah when he was truly just "at play" and thus learned what toys were his favorites. See more »

Quotes

Rehab Leader: [as Khaila suddenly bursts into tears] Khaila, what is it? What's wrong?
Khaila Richards: I killed him.
Rehab Leader: What?
Khaila Richards: My baby. I killed my baby. I threw him in the trash can.
See more »


Soundtracks

Slicker Than Most
by Keith Elam
Performed by Guru
Courtesy of Chrysalis Records, Inc.
A Division of ERG under license from CEMA Special Markets
See more »

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User Reviews

An interesting dilemma
11 October 1999 | by koop-2See all my reviews

"Just because you f***ed some junkie in a street corner doesn't make you his mother!" / dialogue from Losing Isaiah.

The film starts with a drug addict (Halle Berry, who is surprisingly good.) goes around in one of Americas less glamorous blocks with a screaming baby. But the withdrawal symptoms becomes to strong and she lies the child in a container. When she wakes up the next day she can't find Isaiah. She is devastated. (Isaiah has been taken to the hospital when a couple of dust men found him.)

Jessica Lange, Hollywood's best actress, plays the successful doctor that sees a little crack baby lying and screaming on the ward and thinks "Wouldn't it be nice to have one of those around the house?". She adopts the little fellow and raise him together with husband and daughter.

The film jumps between Lange's family that take care of the kid and his biological mother, Berry who is building up a new drug free life. She eventually finds out that her child is alive and, of course, then wants him back. Lange doesn't want to let him go. Berry then hires a tough lawyer (Samuel L. Jackson) and trial it is.

An interesting dilemma. And the film handles it good, very good. You really want to know who will get custody and which of the two mothers who gets the ending frame (and then 'wins' the film). The ending and the ending frame unfortunately is a cowardly compromise.


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