The Man Who Cried

Johnny Depp, Christina Ricci

Directed by Sally Potter
Rolling Stone: star rating
5 0
Community: star rating
5 0 0
May 24, 2001

The Man Who Cried, directed by Sally Potter (Orlando), stumbles badly over its ambitions. Gifted actors such as Christina Ricci, Cate Blanchett, Johnny Depp and John Turturro are set adrift in Potter's attempt to detail the cultural and emotional displacement caused by war. Her focus is Fegele, a Jewish girl whose widowed father, a cantor, leaves her and her grandmother in their Russian village while he departs for America in 1927 to find them a haven from persecution. Too late. After her escape, the child, now called Suzie (Ricci), is sent to a Christian foster home in England. Since Suzie can speak only Yiddish, she is taught a new language by learning English hymns. A decade later, Suzie is working as a chorus girl in Paris, along with Lola (Blanchett, sporting blond hair and an overdone Russian accent ), who gets them both jobs with an opera company. Lola beds fascist singer Dante Dominio (Turturro), leaving Suzie to find comfort in the arms of another outsider, Cesar (Depp), a Gypsy horse handler. Ricci's dark-eyed loveliness goes a long way in helping you buy into this tale of forced assimilation. Her voice is rarely heard, except in song, but her young, unlined face seems to have absorbed a lifetime of sadness. The plot escalates when Germany invades France in 1939, and Suzie continues her quest to find her beloved father, this time in Hollywood. With the help of camera legend Sacha Vierny (Last Year at Marienbad, Belle de Jour), Potter gets the period details right (heads up, Michael Bay), but the film itself has long since flown off the rails, miring good intentions in rank soap opera.

Movie Review Main Next


Community Guidelines »
loading comments

loading comments...


Sort by:
    Read More

    Movie Reviews

    • Child of God
      star rating
      Well Go USA Entertainment
    • lucy
      star rating
      Universal Pictures
    • star rating
      IFC Films
    More Reviews »
    Around the Web
    Powered By ZergNet
    Daily Newsletter

    Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

    Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
    marketing partners.


    We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

    Song Stories

    “Love Is the Answer”

    Utopia | 1977

    The message of the Beatles' "All You Need Is Love" proved to be a universal and long-lasting one, which Utopia revisited 10 years later on this ballad. "From a lyrical standpoint, it's part of a whole class of songs that I write, which are about filial love," Todd Rundgren explained. "I'm not a Christian, but it's called Christian love, the love that people are supposed to naturally feel because we are all of the same species. That may be mythical, but it's still a subject." Though "Love Is the Answer" wasn't a hit, a cover version two years later by England Dan & John Ford Coley peaked at Number Ten on the Billboard singles chart.

    More Song Stories entries »