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Shipping News

The Shipping News

4.3 3
Director: Lasse Hallström

Cast: Kevin Spacey, Julianne Moore, Cate Blanchett


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The Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by E. Annie Proulx becomes this drama from director Lasse Hallström. Kevin Spacey stars as Quoyle, a struggling, emotionally drained newspaper reporter suffering through a wretched marriage with the abusive Petal (Cate Blanchett), a promiscuous wild woman who tries to sell their daughter, Bunny, into adoption before she's killed in a


The Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by E. Annie Proulx becomes this drama from director Lasse Hallström. Kevin Spacey stars as Quoyle, a struggling, emotionally drained newspaper reporter suffering through a wretched marriage with the abusive Petal (Cate Blanchett), a promiscuous wild woman who tries to sell their daughter, Bunny, into adoption before she's killed in a car wreck. Retrieving his daughter, Quoyle sets out for Newfoundland, his ancestral home, with his long-lost Aunt Agnis (Judi Dench). Although he initially finds life on the island to be as forbidding and severe as Agnis herself, Quoyle gets work as a shipping columnist for the local newspaper "The Gammy Bird," owned by eccentric fisherman Jack Buggit (Scott Glenn). Quoyle's work soon finds an appreciative audience and he begins to rebuild his life, dating local single mother Wavey (Julianne Moore), learning some sea craft, discovering his family's dark history, and finally earning some self-respect. Agnis, in the meantime, starts her own successful business and faces a traumatic incident from her childhood involving Quoyle's late father. The Shipping News (2001) co-stars Rhys Ifans and Pete Postlethwaite.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
E. Annie Proulx's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel springs to life in this colorful adaptation directed by Lasse Hallström (Chocolat) and enacted by an especially noteworthy ensemble. Kevin Spacey, cast against type, plays a meek printer whose already unsatisfactory life gets worse when his slutty wife (an almost unrecognizable Cate Blanchett) and elderly parents die in short order. Persuaded by his feisty aunt (Judi Dench) to join her in rehabilitating the old family homestead in an oddball community on Newfoundland's coast, the glum widower and his young daughter move to the isolated village with hopes of a new beginning. Proulx's baroque novel -- thought to be unfilmable by many -- is simplified by Hallström and screenwriter Robert Nelson Jacobs, who address themselves to filling the screen with delightfully eccentric characters. Julianne Moore makes a spirited leading lady, while goofy Rhys Ifans, dour Pete Postlethwaite, and laconic Scott Glenn all log notable performances. Apparently determined to keep viewers off balance, Hallström varies the film's mood from scene to scene; the cute and quirky rub shoulders with the depressing and macabre, and ancient mysteries jostle with humorous revelations. The end result is a movie that's as unpredictable as it is engrossing.
All Movie Guide - Karl Williams
Director Lasse Hallström continues to explore eccentric families with this adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by E. Annie Proulx. Unlike Hallström's previous adaptations of The Cider House Rules (1999) and Chocolat (2000), the director this time tackles a dense, emotionally complicated work that translates somewhat haphazardly to the screen. While Kevin Spacey and Judi Dench inhabit their respective roles splendidly, the script by Robert Nelson Jacobs struggles to include all of the source material's meandering plot, leaving some story threads dangling. The fun bits in the novel also work well in the film: these almost all involve the growth of Spacey's character Quoyle into a gifted newspaper reporter and his interactions with the idiosyncratic staff of that publication. The Newfoundland locations are captured gracefully by cinematographer Oliver Stapleton, but the overall effect is one of mild disappointment in comparison to the filmmaker's previously full-bodied, emotionally satisfying cinematic forays. Modern cineastes are accustomed by now to the book being better than the movie, so they won't be surprised to find The Shipping News (2001) visibly pale in comparison to its literary progenitor.
San Francisco Chronicle
It's hardly possible to overstate what a welcome change of pace The Shipping News is for admirers of Kevin Spacey. Bob Graham
New York Observer
A movie that engrosses, hypnotizes and clings to the memory long after the final frame. Rex Reed

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Lions Gate
Region Code:
[Wide Screen, Color]
[Dolby Digital Stereo]
Sales rank:

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Kevin Spacey Quoyle
Julianne Moore Wavey
Cate Blanchett Petal Bear
Judi Dench Agnis Hamm
Pete Postlethwaite Tert Card
Scott Glenn Jack Buggit
Rhys Ifans Beaufield Nutbeem
Gordon Pinsent Billy Pretty
Jason Behr Dennis Buggit
Larry Pine Bayonet Melville
Jeanetta Arnette Silver Melville
Robert Joy EMS Officer
Alyssa Gainer Bunny
Kaitlyn Gainer Bunny
Lauren Gainer Bunny
John Dunsworth Guy Quoyle
Will McAllister Herry Prowse
Marc Lawrence Cousin Nolan
Nancy Beatty Mavis Bangs

Technical Credits
Lasse Hallström Director
Kerry Barden Casting
Stephen P. Dunn Associate Producer,Asst. Director
Glen Gauthier Sound/Sound Designer
Linda Goldstein Knowlton Producer
David Gropman Production Designer
Leslie Holleran Producer
Billy Hopkins Casting
Robert Nelson Jacobs Screenwriter
Renee Ehrlich Kalfus Costumes/Costume Designer
Michael Kirchberger Sound/Sound Designer
Andrew Mondshein Editor
Diana Pokorny Co-producer
Meryl Poster Executive Producer
E. Annie Proulx Source Author
Gretchen Rau Set Decoration/Design
Peter Rogness Art Director
Karen Schulz-Gropman Art Director
Suzanne Smith Casting
Randy Spendlove Musical Direction/Supervision
Oliver Stapleton Cinematographer
Neil Trifunovich Special Effects Supervisor
Bob Weinstein Executive Producer
Harvey Weinstein Executive Producer
Irwin Winkler Producer
Christopher Young Score Composer

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- The Shipping News
1. Chance Meeting [5:52]
2. Mother Of The Year [4:43]
3. A Really Bad Time [7:04]
4. Piece In A Puzzle [7:10]
5. New Trade [7:51]
6. The First Week [7:16]
7. The Curse [8:43]
8. Hitler's Boat [6:49]
9. Friends [3:59]
10. Family History [12:12]
11. Head Above Water [7:18]
12. Dark Past [7:51]
13. Shipwreck [6:33]
14. Aftermath [6:54]
15. A Wake [10:48]

Customer Reviews

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The Shipping News 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
TheEerieCoterie More than 1 year ago
The Eerie Coterie is more than just Horror movies and books; deep down Horror means more than slasher films, ghosts, demonic rituals and ramshackle houses filled with psychically gifted creatures. It is the everyday that can creep up on you and freak you out. The Shipping News is a literate film, if there is such a term, but deep down it is composed of all the things that make up a Horror story. It has tragedy and sorrow, and is set in a run down old house out in newfoundland where the main character's daughter "sees things". It is a tale about family and trying to reconnect after the loss of Quoyle's (the main character) wife. This is The Nobody's 2nd favorite film (non-horror) and is such a visually impactful, perfectly acted and surprisingly funny at times. There is also a bit of creepy backstory told in the town cemetery - how's that for creepy!! The book is my #1 favorite book of all time and the soundtrack is filled with haunting pieces. Judi Dench, Kevin Spacey, Julianne Moore and Cate Blanchett are top notch actors tackling what The Eerie Coterie loves the most - a haunted love story.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As a new E. Annie Proulx fan, I was excited to see The Shipping News when it was released on DVD, having not been able to see it in theaters. The Shipping News was terrific, plain and simple. I loved the book, and loved the movie equally as well. Kevin Spacey plays way outside of his usual smooth-guy roles, and is perfectly pathetic as Quoyle. You really feel sorry for the guy. Julianne Moore is sweet and solemn, and Judi Dench and Cate Blanchett make this show memorable. It's a powerful film about moving on to happiness despite miserable circumstances dealt in life. Plus, the score by Christopher Young is sweeping and anthemic. An interesting emotionally and psychologically charged drama.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago