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The Sum of Us

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Overview

The relationship between a gay son and his straight father is chronicled in this Australian drama adapted from David Steven's play. One aspect of the play that remains is the characters' proclivity for reacting to and addressing the audience directly. Harry Mitchell is a widower living in a small house in Sydney with Jeff, his son. Harry has always accepted the fact that his son is openly gay. The sincerity of his acceptance is questioned when Jeff brings a potential lover home for the night. Harry joins them for...
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Overview

The relationship between a gay son and his straight father is chronicled in this Australian drama adapted from David Steven's play. One aspect of the play that remains is the characters' proclivity for reacting to and addressing the audience directly. Harry Mitchell is a widower living in a small house in Sydney with Jeff, his son. Harry has always accepted the fact that his son is openly gay. The sincerity of his acceptance is questioned when Jeff brings a potential lover home for the night. Harry joins them for a nightcap and makes the man feel quite welcome. He chats until the man flees the house. But Harry is not the only one who does this. Jeff accidently does a similar thing when Harry begins to get involved with Joyce, a divorcee he met through a dating service. She is just healing from her broken marriage and is still fragile. She cannot deal with Jeff's sexuality. She leaves. As a result, Harry suffers a stroke. Jeff now spends all his time caring for his dad.
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Special Features

Origional theatrical trailer; English: stereo surround; English, french & spanish language subtitles
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Laura Abraham
Films that explore the familial relationship are common in Hollywood. These movies tend to be formulaic in nature and many times lack the imagination or depth to be anything more than caricatures of a family. In the 1995 Australian film The Sum of Us, nothing is formulaic. The story centers on a father-son duo, of which the son is gay. The Sum of Us is a refreshing, if not over-the-top example of what a family without prejudice looks like. This is a motion picture that has a joke every few moments; however, it never seems affected or unreal. Although many relationships between fathers and their gay sons do not resemble the one in this movie, the easy connection between the actors brings a genuine tangibility to the screen. Russell Crowe (of the more testosterone-influenced film Gladiator) shows great depth here portraying not just a gay man but a man whose outward appearance really hides a shy, sensitive soul. Jack Thompson as Jack's father, Harry Mitchell, is such a funny, refreshing actor that one can not help but love Harry even as he takes the role of loyal dad to unnerving levels. The Sum of Us is a delightful look at relationships as well as a refreshing look at the power of films. When a filmmaker steers off the path Hollywood wholeheartedly embraces, sometimes you end up with a gem of a film. The Sum of Us is this type of film, showing what art can be when an artist embraces feelings over formula, as directors Geoff Burton and Kevin Dowling did here.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 6/3/2003
  • UPC: 027616878960
  • Original Release: 1994
  • Rating:

  • Source: Mgm (Video & Dvd)
  • Region Code: 1
  • Aspect Ratio: Pre-1954 Standard (1.33.1), Theatre Wide-Screen (1.85.1)
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Sound: Dolby Digital Surround
  • Language: English
  • Time: 1:40:00
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Jack Thompson Harry Mitchell
Russell Crowe Jeff Mitchell
John Polson Greg
Deborah Kennedy Joyce Johnson
Joss Moroney Young Jeff
Mitch Mathews Gran
Julie Herbert Mary
Rebekah Elmaloglou Jenny
Jan Adele Barmaid
Bob Baines Greg's Father
Paul Freeman George
Stuart Campbell Leather Man
Elaine Lee Woman on Train
Ross Anderson Gardener
Michael Burgess Foreman
Technical Credits
Geoff Burton Director, Cinematographer
Kevin Dowling Director, Producer
Rod Allan Producer
Carolynne Cunningham Asst. Director
Dave Faulkner Score Composer
Corky Kessler Producer
Faith Martin Casting
Hal McElroy Executive Producer
Donald Scatena Producer
David Stevens Screenwriter
Errol Sullivan Executive Producer
Frans Vandenburg Editor
Graham "Grace" Walker Production Designer
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Scene Index

Side #1 -- The Sum of Us [FS]
1. Main Title/Playiny Footy [:07]
2. Beer for the Cheerful [:11]
3. The Dating Life [4:45]
4. Memories of Gran [4:56]
5. Speedo Junkie [8:51]
6. Meeting Dad [3:11]
7. Pushy Henrietta [4:00]
8. Makes Me Feel Guilty [4:57]
9. The Agonizing Pain of It [5:13]
10. Fun With Joyce & Harry [5:45]
11. The Negotiated Proposal [3:58]
12. A Family Tree [8:00]
13. Wives Past and Future [3:41]
14. Never Ashamed [3:27]
15. Once for Yes, Twice for No [4:35]
16. Greg's Mardi Gras [6:08]
17. The Savvy Shopper [3:27]
18. Nothing Like an Old Fool [4:07]
19. Being Me in the Park [3:43]
20. End Credits [7:33]
Side #2 -- The Sum of Us [WS]
1. Main Title/Playiny Footy [:07]
2. Beer for the Cheerful [:11]
3. The Dating Life [4:45]
4. Memories of Gran [4:56]
5. Speedo Junkie [8:51]
6. Meeting Dad [3:11]
7. Pushy Henrietta [4:00]
8. Makes Me Feel Guilty [4:57]
9. The Agonizing Pain of It [5:13]
10. Fun With Joyce & Harry [5:45]
11. The Negotiated Proposal [3:58]
12. A Family Tree [8:00]
13. Wives Past and Future [3:41]
14. Never Ashamed [3:27]
15. Once for Yes, Twice for No [4:35]
16. Greg's Mardi Gras [6:08]
17. The Savvy Shopper [3:27]
18. Nothing Like an Old Fool [4:07]
19. Being Me in the Park [3:43]
20. End Credits [7:33]
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Menu

Side #1 -- The Sum of Us [FS]
   Play Movie
   Scene Selections
   Theatrical Trailer
   Subtitles
      English
      Español
      Français
      None
Side #2 -- The Sum of Us [WS]
   Play Movie
   Scene Selections
   Theatrical Trailer
   Subtitles
      English
      Español
      Français
      None
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 1 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A GEM of a Movie!

    Too bad that Russell Crowe has become such a fool. So many of his movies are excellent, including this one. Crowe plays a young gay man and Thompson is his dad. The terrific basis of this movie is the love between father and son. In this unusual relationship, this dad truly loves his son, accepts and involves himself in his son's "gay" life. Crowe also loves his dad but wishes he wouldn't interfere in his love life. Both men are lonely and each sets out to have a meaningful love relationship. There are a couple of twists "of course" to make this also a drama. The Sum of Us is truly a GEM. If you are in any way homophobic you won't be able to stand it because Russell Crowe is GAY and there are a couple of gay adult situations. But, If you want to see a movie that makes you smile, cry, then smile again, this one's for you. It's about love, caring, and devotion between father and son.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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