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Detachment (2011)

Adrien Brody , Marcia Gaye Harden , Tony Kaye  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (105 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Adrien Brody, Marcia Gaye Harden, James Caan, Christina Hendricks, Lucy Liu
  • Directors: Tony Kaye
  • Format: AC-3, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Tribeca
  • DVD Release Date: September 18, 2012
  • Run Time: 97 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (105 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0086900TI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #94,857 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews


"Its sheer audacity grabs your of [Brody's] best performances since The Pianist" --The New York Times

"Kaye is an enormous talent. And Detachment proves it...[It] gets to you. It hits hard." --Rolling Stone

Product Description

Product Description

Director Tony Kaye's (American History X) long-awaited film DETACHMENT stars Academy Award® winner Adrien Brody (The Pianist, Splice) as Henry Barthes, a substitute teacher who conveniently avoids any emotional connections by never staying anywhere long enough to form a bond with either his students or colleagues. A lost soul grappling with a troubled past, Henry finds himself at a public school where an apathetic student body has created a frustrated, burned-out administration. Inadvertently becoming a role model to his students, while also bonding with a runaway teen who is just as lost as he is, Henry finds that he's not alone in a life-and-death struggle to find beauty in a seemingly vicious and loveless world.

Special Features:

  • An Interview with Director Tony Kaye and Academy Award® winner Adrien Brody, Presented by American Express
  • Interviews from the Red Carpet at the Tribeca Film Festival Premiere of DETACHMENT

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Controversial director Tony Kaye certainly doesn't play it safe. Notorious for "American History X," Kaye has proven himself both outspoken and challenging as a filmmaker (and as a person). Despite that film's positive reception by both audiences and critics (as well as its Oscar nominated leading performance by Edward Norton), Kaye publicly disavowed the movie after it was recut against his wishes. So it's no surprise that "Detachment," from a screenplay by Carl Lund, is like a brisk slap to the face. A bleak and depressing portrait of the American educational system, the film is unrelentingly dark. In its world view, it certainly has a refreshing candor and truth. At times, though, the stylized nature of the movie can detract from its essence. It is surely meant to provoke, which it does, but it also has the tendency to straddle the line of pushing over-the-top when a bit of restraint might have balanced the action. Still, though, it's hard to fault someone willing to make a bold statement in these days of formulaic filmmaking. "Detachment" has a lot to recommend it, but it presents a hyperreality that may not appeal to every viewer.

Adrien Brody plays a substitute teacher who embarks on a one month assignment at a struggling public high school. The students are alternately disaffected, disconnected, and/or outright confrontational. The film has a multi-media quality (with occasional voice over, animation sequences, and kinetic editing) that helps to establish a rather unsettling mood. Brody has weathered a difficult childhood, glimpsed in quick cuts, and is able to understand the silent cries for approval and recognition from the student body and his fellow staff.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Adrian Brody's best yet March 19, 2012
Format:Amazon Instant Video|Verified Purchase
To begin: the first third of the movie is out of synch which almost had me turn it off and ask for my money back. But I stuck with it, although it should be fixed, and am I ever glad I did.

This is a beautiful, and also a heartbreaking film. Adrian Brody has the most soulful eyes and is superb in this film.

The story is not very new, but it's approach is different.

I felt a lot of empathy for each character.

It is not for the faint of heart, for it has quite a few very difficult situations presented.

But it's not exploitative at all.

Rather it is tender. Yes, tender. And you feel for these people as if they were you and yours.
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22 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally , a teacher drama that tells it like it is April 1, 2012
Format:Amazon Instant Video
I related to this wonderful film as a 38 year teacher. I watched it twice on on demand, tried to VCR it the second time, but it didn't come out that well. I can't wait until the DVD is released. While the sub plot involving the teenage prostitute is a bit too much, the classroom scenes are haunting and frightfully real, particularly when it is the first day. The faculty burnout scenes are beautifully scripted as a consequence of students bad treatment of teachers. Those not in the profession who villify teachers constantly should see this film and maybe have a degree of sympathy for us.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Sure, the lead character in this film is a substitute teacher, but this is NOT a movie about teachers or the educational system. It's about relationships and the lead just happens to be a teacher. Most of the character's interaction comes between him and a young girl, a prostitute he met on the streets, and his grandfather, who is living out his final days in a hospital / nursing home.

I enjoyed the movie and think that it hit its mark by showing how people can be completely detached from their world and the people in it. It is hard to go into much details without throwing out spoilers left and right, so I'll just say that the progression of the lead character through the film was an interesting one to watch, if the ending was a bit predictable.

Some people will find the movie disturbing on how realistically it shows life and death and our reactions to it. There is no spoiler in telling you the lead character is detached from just about everything in his life, the title pretty much sums that up for us. It is, however, still disturbing to see what that translates to when he comes across the prostitute the first time and does nothing to help as a man on a bus beats her just a few feet from where he's sitting.

At one point in the movie, the one student that he does have somewhat of a relationship comes and tries to talk to him about her problems. She's depressed, you can pretty much tell she is suicidal and when she breaks down crying and grabs onto him he can't do much to console her. Another teacher walks in and immediately infers that he's having an inappropriate relationship with the student because he was having physical contact with her, making a great point on just how easily things are misconstrued in our world today.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An A for effort but I still give only 4 stars October 17, 2012
DETACHMENT (Prod. Adrien Brody, Dir. Tony Kaye, first released in France in 2012, 99 minutes) was a strange, poetic, depressing and in some ways disjointed film. It confused me slightly at first, because I had allowed myself to be misled by the little descriptive squib. The squib said Adrien Brody plays a substitute teacher who wanders from job to job so as not to get attached to any place or colleague.

This film gives the lie to that lazy description. Brody plays Henry Barthes (pronounced "Barth"), substitute teacher and apparently Mr. Spock wannabe. Only it does not work out that way as he struggles with the demons of his childhood, his demented grandfather, a sweet underage prostitute he saves from the street (stunning performance by Sami Gayle, one of the most beautiful girls I have ever seen) and a desperately suicidal student (the equally stunning Betty Kaye).

At an unnamed, doomed New York high school for violent, subpar students, Mr. Barthes confronts and battles his demons of emptiness, loneliness, a horrible childhood and yes, his own detachment. The school is flailing in the grips of No Child Left Behind. Some of the teachers seem ready to do something insane; a few see their days are numbered.

Mr. Barthes hands over the prostitute he has singlehandedly reformed to the foster care people - even though he plainly loves her as she loves him, and it seemed to me a very fatherly love. He also allows the suicidal student to slip through his fingers, and she exits this world in a terrifying scene I saw coming the second it started. Yet he is gentle, caring, compassionate and understanding because he carries the weight of the world on his own desperate shoulders.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Deeply moving
I view the main character, Mr. Henry, as the perfect teacher. I believe that teens want attention above anything else, and that is the reason they act out. Read more
Published 2 days ago by Dakota
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Movie That You Never Heard Of
Heartbreaking, poignant, and beautiful. Detachment warms your heart and scares you at the same time. Conditions inside this fictional high school feel real. Read more
Published 4 days ago by Las Vegas
5.0 out of 5 stars Really good!
This moving was so thought provoking on many levels. A pleasant find. The script was beautifully written and direction was well executed.
Published 7 days ago by Dusty Lashes
1.0 out of 5 stars Not my type of film
I tried this because I like the actor, Adrian Brody. But the film was such that I didn't watch very much of it. It may have had too much violence--I can't remember.
Published 9 days ago by Ella M. Rydzewski
5.0 out of 5 stars Visit this classrom with this teacher and learn something
My wife and I watched Tony Kay’s “Detachment” on a DVD that we bought from Amazon—a film that came out in 2012 with a substitute teacher as the main character. Read more
Published 14 days ago by Lloyd Lofthouse
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing
This movie was one of the most fantastic I've seen in a long time. Adrien Brody portrays the perfectly under control yet emotionally crippled teacher in an at-risk school. Read more
Published 15 days ago by gfhq2002
4.0 out of 5 stars Gloomy, with a sense of foreboding. Like overcast skies where you're...
A fine appearance by Adrian as a substitute teacher at a high school on the downward slope of social and economic reality. Read more
Published 16 days ago by Richard H.
4.0 out of 5 stars Relentlessly grim, gritty, gripping
Don't watch this if you're feeling suicidal or looking for laughs or light entertainment. "Detachment" focuses on a public high school populated by kids who are not... Read more
Published 17 days ago by lonebeaut
5.0 out of 5 stars Profound, stunning movie
This movie shows that childhood trauma can lead adult behaviors such as rage, but can also lead to ability to perceive the woundedness in others who are also suffering and thus... Read more
Published 28 days ago by John E Easter
5.0 out of 5 stars Required viewing for every school administrator
Detachment gives the viewer a look into the realities of teaching in an economically impoverished area. Teaching can really be a thankless job.
Published 1 month ago by David Day
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