Home 2000s 2002 Movies Spider

Spider

49
SHARE

98 minutes – Drama
Release date: February 28, 2003
DVD release date: July 29, 2003
Canadian distributor: Odeon Films

Screenwriter Patrick McGrath`s novel on which this film is based is set in the 1930s and 1950s. In the film, those decades have become the 1960s and 1980s. By moving the story forward it has more impact on a contemporary audience who must confront the possible reality contained in this work of fiction. For example, Spider is the nickname of the main character, Dennis Cleg played by Ralph Fiennes. We first see him as a grown man prematurely discharged from a mental hospital. Today`s audiences are all too familiar with people who have been dumped back on the street who might be better off if still under some care. We learn that Spider is still too fragile to handle the demands of the community, of a city, of life outside a sheltered environment. This vulnerability is what will eventually condemn him to unravel once he is back on the streets of London where he grew up. Called Spider because of his fascination with the web-spinning arachnids, he suspects that his father (Byrne) killed his mother (Richardson) so he could replace her with a whore (also played by Richardson). Released from hospital, Spider attempts to retrace the path of his youth, descending deeper into madness with every step. The viewer sees everything through Spider’s eyes, which makes for an unsettling experience. Fiennes and Richardson give tour-de-force performances in a cast that is uniformly excellent. The film is starkly austere, and asks the audience to question what is fantasy and what is reality as it moves to its shattering conclusion.

Northernstars.ca chose Spider as one of its Top 10 Canadian Films of the Decade in December 2009.

Also see: Stripped to the Bone: David Cronenberg’s Spider by Maurie Alioff.
Also see: Fun and Furor: An Interview with Ron Sanders, the editor of Spider.



SpiderSpider
Crew:
Producer:

Catherine Bailey
David Cronenberg
Samuel Hadida

Director:

David Cronenberg

Screenwriter:

Patrick McGrath

Cinematographer:

Peter Suschitzky

Editor:

Ronald Sanders

Composer:

Howard Shore

Cast:Roles:

Ralph Fiennes
Miranda Richardson
Gabriel Byrne
Lynn Redgrave
John Neville
Bradley Hall
Gary Reineke
Philip Craig
Cliff Saunders
Tara Ellis
Sara Stockbridge
Arthur Whybrow
Nicola Duffett
Jake Nightingale
Alison Egan
Donald Ewer
Joan Heney
Peter Elliott
Alec Stockwell
Scott McCord
Frank Blanch
Rachel Taggart
Olivia Imogen Harris

Spider
Yvonne / Mrs. Cleg
Bill Cleg
Mrs. Wilkinson
Terrence
Spider Boy
Freddy
John
Bob
Nora
Gladys
Ernie
Barmaid
Large Man
Flashing Yvonne
Toothless Jack
Cook
Resident
Resident
Resident
Resident
Young Woman
Child