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USA: Empire Pictures
Cast: Mark Rylance, Kerry Fox, Timothy Spall, Alastair Galbraith, Marianne Faithfull, Philippe Calvario, Susannah Harker, Rebecca R Palmer, Joe Prospero
Director: Patrice Chereau
Countries: France / UK / Germany / Spain
USA: 119 mins
UK: 120 mins
UK Certificate: 18 contains strong sex scenes and strong language
USA Release Date: 19 October 2001 (Limited Release)
UK Release Date: 27 July 2001
Recently divorced from his wife, Jay (Mark Rylance) is head barman in a fashionable London bar. Living in a cramped and dirty flat, he seeks solace in his Wednesday afternoon visits from Claire (Kerry Fox). Both think the answer to their mutual disenchantment lies in their passionate, anonymous and totally wordless sex.
They don't speak but they seem to have an understanding as they silently lie down together on the carpet.
Every Wednesday at the same time, she arrives and they immediately undress. He leads her straight down to the basement that remains unfurnished and bare save the blankets and quilts he has laid down. This is a room where everything is permitted except, apparently, clarity.
If sex is how you meet and get to know people, what does he know of her?
Their 'arrangement' is jeopardized when Jay decides to follow Claire home one day. She is rehearsing the main part in an amateur theatre pub production of 'The Glass Menagerie' and Jay ends up meeting Claire's husband Andy (Timothy Spall) there. The two men play pool together and by involving himself with Claire's family, though incognito, the fragile, unspoken pact that existed between them is shattered.
While INTIMACY has gained notoriety for the explicit nature of its sex scenes, Chereau has been widely praised for bringing European cinema to Britain. INTIMACY is a bold and honest film that is French in style and subject matter, yet firmly British with a strong cast and bleak London landscape.
Based on a novel and short story by Hanif Kureishi (My Beautiful Laundrette, The Buddha of Suburbia), INTIMACY received the Best Film Award at the Berlin International Film Festival 2001. Fox also won the Best Actress Award for her performance at the awards, and Chereau (La Reine Margot, Those Who Love Me Can Take the Train), the Best European Director Award.
Original Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 (16 x 9 Widescreen)
Sound Quality: 5.1 Dolby Surround