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The Designated Mourner Movie Review Summary

Actors: Mike Nichols, Miranda Richardson, David de Keyser

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Designated Mourner


Jack (Nichols) is a reasonably intelligent guy who lives in a fictional undemocratic and repressive nation and city (probably the United Kingdom and London) in the not-too-distant future. He married into a fiercely intellectual family, and his wife Judy (Richardson) and professor father-in-law (de Keyser) obviously look down on him while he strives mightily to belong. While thuggish violence in the streets bids fair to destroy all that the three characters respect and hold dear, they hold forth about their values and one another, raising the issues of highbrow v. lowbrow, and what it means to be an intellectual, especially when the world is falling apart. The screenplay is by Wallace Shawn (who writes "difficult" plays but is known by moviegoers for his supercilious Vizzini in "The Princess Bride" and for "My Dinner With Andre"), based on his play of the same name. The movie is an unmistakably acquired taste -- something for "Andre" or Spalding Gray fans -- as the three actors basically sit behind a table and talk to the camera without even interacting with one another. But Nichols (the former comic and director of "The Graduate" and "Catch-22") turns in a fantastic performance, for those who appreciate this sort of thing.
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The review of this Movie prepared by David Loftus



Script Analysis of The Designated Mourner

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Plot & Themes

Time/era of movie:    -   near future Inner struggle or disability    -   Yes Struggle with    -   very deep philosophy-of-life stuff

Main Character

Identity:    -   Male Profession/status:    -   business executive Age:    -   40's-50's Ethnicity/Nationality    -   British

Setting

Europe    -   Yes European country:    -   England/UK City?    -   Yes City:    -   London    -   dirty, grimy (like New York)    -   dangerous    -   wealthy

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment Any profanity?    -   Occasional swearing Is this movie based on a    -   play

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