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USA & UK: Twentieth Century Fox
Cast: Derek Luke, Denzel Washington, Joy Bryant, Salli Richardson, Earl Billings, Kevin Connolly, Viola Davis, Rainoldo Gooding, Novella Nelson, Yolonda Ross, Kente Scott,, Stephen Snedden, O L Duke, Lissy Gulick, Cory Hodges, Leonard Howze, De'Angelo Wilson
Director: Denzel Washington
USA: 117 mins
UK: 119 mins
USA Rated: PG-13 for violence, language and mature thematic material involving child abuse
UK Certificate: 15 contains childhood trauma and infrequent strong language
USA Release Date: 19 December 2002 (Limited Release)
UK Release Date: 16 May 2003
UK Release Date: 16 May 2003
ANTWONE FISHER is the story of a man who digs inside himself to discover therein lies a king...
A sailor with an explosive attitude, Fisher (Derek Luke) is ordered to see a naval psychiatrist (Denzel Washington) about his volatile temper. Little did he know that his first step into the doctor's office would lead him on a journey home. With the support of the doctor, who becomes more like a father than anyone Fisher has ever known, and the woman (Joy Bryant) from whom he learns how to love, Fisher finds the courage to stop fighting and start healing. Only then can he call on the family he never knew and come to terms with the one he knew all too well.
Antwone Fisher, commandingly played by Derek Luke in his feature film debut, is a bright, angry young man scarred by childhood rejection and abuse with a quick temper and a violent streak. His behaviour threatens to get him thrown out of the navy and lands him in the office of navy psychiatrist Dr Jerome Davenport (Denzel Washington, Training Day) whose stiff upper lip and stubborn resolve find an unlikely match.
Fisher was born in prison two months after his father was murdered and when his mother fails to collect him on her release from jail, he spends his childhood in various foster homes, including the torturous home presided over by the extremely religious Mrs Tate (Novella Nelson, The Devil's Advocate).
As Antwone's weekly sessions with Dr Davenport continue he meets another young sailor Cheryl Smolley (Joy Bryant, Showtime). Their relationship is sweet and innocent and she sees that amidst his discontent is a good heart and one she wants to get closer to... if only he will let her.
The more time Fisher spends with Dr Davenport, he grows to trust the doctor and the normally strict boundaries of the doctor-patient relationship begin to relax. As Fisher struggles with his temper and with Davenport's advice that he should deal with his past, he returns to Ohio to confront the family members that still haunt him. Antwone's story is counterpointed with the story of Dr Davenport and his wife Berta (Salli Richardson, Biker Boyz) who have their own struggles with their inability to have children and a breakdown in communication between the couple. Davenport comes to realise that his relationship with Fisher is a two way street and they have in fact been therapy for each other.
From a screenplay by Antwone Quentin Fisher, this is a film of great, heartbreaking and joyous moments. The DVD contains fascinating extras including audio commentary from Denzel Washington and producer Todd Black and several featurettes including 'Meeting Antwone Fisher', 'The Making Of...' and 'Hollywood and the Navy'.
Running Time: 120 Minutes
DVD Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 (Widescreen 16x9)
DVD Sound Quality: 5.1 Dolby
DVD Subtitles: English for the Hearing Impaired
DVD Features: Audio Commentary by Denzel Washington
& Producer Todd Black
Featurette: Meeting Antwone Fisher
Featurette: Making of Antwone Fisher
Featurette: Hollywood and the Navy