In the Bedroom (2001) - Rotten Tomatoes

In the Bedroom2001

In the Bedroom (2001)



Critic Consensus: Expertly crafted and performed, In the Bedroom is a quietly wrenching portrayal of grief.

In the Bedroom Photos

Movie Info

Character actor and noted photographer Todd Field made his directorial debut with this emotionally powerful drama, which earned enthusiastic reviews at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival. Frank Fowler (Nick Stahl) is a handsome and amiable young man who has recently graduated from high school and is spending the summer working as a lobster fisherman before heading off to college in the fall. Frank is also involved with Natalie (Marisa Tomei), an attractive woman ten years his senior who is separated from her husband Richard (William Mapother), though their divorce has not yet been finalized. Frank's parents, Matt (Tom Wilkinson) and Ruth (Sissy Spacek) wonder if it's wise for their son to be pursuing a romance that he won't be able to continue in a few months; Matt trusts Frank and leaves him to make his own decisions, while Ruth quietly but firmly registers her objections. One day, Richard snaps, and breaks into Natalie's home; when he discovers Frank is there, he viciously kills him. The wheels of justice turn in an unexpected direction, and Richard is released on bail, free to go his own way as he awaits his trial. Matt and Ruth are both deeply traumatized by the event; while Matt tries to deal with his hurt by retreating into his work and avoiding his feelings, Ruth instead becomes increasingly withdrawn, losing interest in her job as a music teacher and spending her nights chain smoking in front of the television. In the Bedroom was adapted from the short story Killings by Andre Dubus. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

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Sissy Spacek
as Ruth Fowler
Tom Wilkinson
as Matt Fowler
Nick Stahl
as Frank Fowler
Marisa Tomei
as Natalie Strout
William Mapother
as Richard Strout
William Wise
as Willis Grinnel
Celia Weston
as Katie Grinnel
Karen Allen
as Marla Keyes
Ron Russell
as Rockland T-ball
Jonathan Walsh
as Father McCasslin
Samuel Johnson
as Rockland T-ball
Diane E. Hamlin
as Davis' Assistant
Christopher Adams
as Duncan Strout
Henry Field
as Young Frank
Harriet Dawkins
as Alma Adamson
Bill Dawkins
as Elwyn Adamson
Kevin Chapman
as Tim's Friend
Harold Withee
as Grocery Clerk
David Blair (XI)
as Marlboro Man
Elisabeth McClure
as Elderly Woman
Alida P. Field
as Young Gymnast
Andrea Walker
as Waitress
Coomenic Cuccinello III
as Rockland T-ball
Veronica Cartwright
as Minister on television
Daran Norris
as Red sox replay
Don Lewis
as Bridge Operator
Doug Rich
as Fork lift Operator
Robin Wimbiscus
as Performace Coordinator
Lisa Carlton
as Rockland T-ball
Rebecca Benner
as Rockland T-ball
Francis Mazzeo
as Rockland T-ball
Brian Hagley
as Rockland T-ball
Sam Cousins
as Rockland T-ball
Jackie Hagley
as Rockland T-ball
Comenic Cuccinello III
as Rockland T-Ball
Ronald Russell
as Rockland T-Ball
Rachel Freeman
as Rockland T-ball
Kenney Dale Johnson
as Rockland T-ball
Daniel Hendricks
as Rockland T-ball
Parker Spear
as Rockland T-ball
Sam Johnson
as Rockland T-Ball
Matthew Maxwell
as Rockland T-ball
Shyann Gauthier
as Rockland T-ball
Joshua Mills
as Rockland T-ball
Bethany Berry
as Rockland T-ball
Eric Rahkonen
as Rockland T-ball
Hope Berry
as Rockland T-ball
Natalie Russell
as Rockland T-ball
Chelsea Peasley
as Rockland T-ball
Misty Seekins
as Rockland T-ball
Daniel Baxter-Leahy
as Rockland T-ball
Philip Spearing
as Rockland T-ball
Brandon Carleton
as Rockland T-ball
Mackenzie Tucker
as Rockland T-ball
Owen Thompson
as Rockland T-ball
Ben Staples
as Rockland T-ball
Ryan Ecker
as Rockland T-ball
Jared Mekin
as Rockland T-ball
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Critic Reviews for In the Bedroom

All Critics (139) | Top Critics (37)

Goes the distance to avoid banalizing the dilemma of a reasonable couple unhinged by unreasonable events.

August 12, 2002 | Full Review…

Intense, superbly acted chamber piece.

January 21, 2002 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
Top Critic

So emotionally pure and rigorous that you're more than willing to go along with it.

January 10, 2002

The story and direction are powerful enough. But it's the acting that takes In the Bedroom higher.

December 28, 2001

Lingers in the mind, suffusing melancholy with the fateful pall of dread that hangs over all of life's pleasures.

December 28, 2001 | Full Review…

Field has a talent for drawing us directly into his characters' lives and making us feel what they feel.

December 28, 2001 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for In the Bedroom

Analogous title for a flm that deals with this state in various ways. Sissy Spacek, Tom Wilkinson, and Marisa Tomei shine in this dismal tale of devastation in a Maine lobster town. First-time director Todd Field did a brilliant job portraying the loss, rage, and desire for revenge with the help of exceptional acting performances, and the observation of the taciturn anguish so readily available in our everyday lives.

Eric S
Eric S

Super Reviewer


An expertly crafted film concerning a family dealing with grief. Tom Wilkinson impresses yet again, in his most accomplished performance yet as a respected man of a small town in Maine who feels he must avenge the terrible act committed against his son. The performances are all top-notch, capped off with an arresting last thirty minutes of the movie that prove to be extremely well written and plotted. Although at times it appears to be a little too slow-moving, if you concentrate on the setting, characters, and how the story is told, you should be captivated.

Dan Schultz
Dan Schultz

Super Reviewer

This film is nigh perfect until 1/3 of the way through, when it starts trying too hard to portray the subtlety of a grieving family. The fights - while magnificently acted - are completely unmotivated. Ruth claims Matt never wanted to talk about the incident, but it's not as if she ever tried talking either. It's a cop-out to say that she is confused with grief and doesn't know what she's saying. Even so, the film would need more development to come to that realization. THEN the climax. Come on! Matt is not the killing kind, and the plan is full of holes! This film attempts a conscionable killing ala Woody Allen, but they neglect to properly build the motives, the atmosphere, and the aftermath.

Alice Shen
Alice Shen

Super Reviewer

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