Mathilda, a 12-year-old girl, is reluctantly taken in by Léon, a professional assassin, after her family is murdered. Léon and Mathilda form an unusual relationship, as she becomes his protégée and learns the assassin's trade.
Sara Goldfarb (Ellen Burstyn) is a retired widow, living in a small apartment. She spends most of her time watching TV, especially a particular self-help show. She has delusions of rising above her current dull existence by being a guest on that show. Her son, Harry (Jared Leto) is a junkie but along with his friend Tyrone (Marlon Wayans) has visions of making it big by becoming a drug dealer. Harry's girlfriend Marion (Jennifer Connelly) could be fashion designer or artist but is swept along in Harry's drug-centric world. Meanwhile Sara has developed an addiction of her own. She desperately wants to lose weight and so goes on a crash course involving popping pills, pills which turn out to be very addictive and harmful to her mental state.Written by
Jared Leto stated in an interview with Rolling Stone that he would shoot up water while hanging around real-life junkies, and he said shooting up anything was intense and he would never do it again. See more »
(at around 58 mins) Marion's bangs when she is at dinner with Arnold near the end of the movie constantly change from being behind her ears to down in her face. See more »
The opening credits each disappear as if being melted like heroin. See more »
In the opening credits for the edited version, when the title card "Requiem for a Dream" crashes down, underneath it is a red box with red lettering that reads "edited version", making it clear to the viewer that they are not seeing the true version of the film. See more »
You will not so much as want to take a sip of wine after watching this mesmerizing film about the horrors of drug addiction. I was not a fan of director Darren Aronofsky's debut film "Pi," but with this movie he proves to be a filmmaker of unlimited vision and style. Four characters in Brighton Beach, Brooklyn are all driven to despair due to their drug abuse, the saddest being Ellen Burstyn as a nice Jewish widow who unwittingly becomes addicted to prescription diet pills that help her lose weight but drag her into a world of hallucinations and paranoia. Burstyn is superb. It is so refreshing to see such a great veteran like her in such a challenging leading role, one in which she goes through a hell worse than that in "The Exorcist."
But this is a director's film if there ever was one. Aronofsky knows how to tell a story in a way that is dazzling in its use of sound, editing, and cinematography. The score by the Kronos Quartet and Clint Mansell is the most striking movie music I have heard in a very long time.
"Requiem for a Dream" is not a movie for everyone. It is the essence of independent filmmaking, a daring, engrossing, artful film that stays with you long after you leave the theater. Hollywood bubblegum this ain't.
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