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Playing Mona Lisa

Threat advisory: Guarded - General risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

Set in San Francisco, Playing Mona Lisa follows Claire Goldstein, a brilliant 23-year-old pianist, as she graduates from the San Francisco Academy of Music. Disappointed over her rejection by the prestigious Tchaikovsky piano competition, she and her boyfriend Jeremy (Zachary Kranzler) celebrate the failure by opening a bottle of champagne and he asks her to marry him. Excited, she confides the news to her friends, Sabrina (Brooke Langton) and Arthur (Johnny Galecki). Pinning paper hearts to herself that proclaim her answer to his proposal, a resounding and exuberant "YES!", she runs to Jeremy's apartment where he sheepishly acknowledges that he thinks that it would be best if they broke off their relationship.

Despondent, Claire retreats to her apartment but a few nights later that too is taken away from her when an earthquake rumbles through San Francisco and her building is condemned. With nowhere to turn, she is forced to take shelter in her childhood home where her neurotic family, in the midst of the chaotic preparations for her older sister's wedding, threatens her already shaky sanity.

Persons of interest

  • Alicia Witt .... Claire Goldstein
  • Harvey Fierstein .... Bennett
  • Brooke Langton .... Sabrina
  • Johnny Galecki .... Arthur
  • Ivan Sergei .... Eddie
  • Marlo Thomas .... Sheila Goldstein
  • Elliott Gould .... Bernie Goldstein
  • Tammy Townsend .... Alice
  • Molly Hagan .... Jenine Goldstein
  • Estelle Harris .... Aunt Velva
  • Pat Crawford Brown .... Grandma
  • Zachary Kranzler .... Jeremy
  • Joe Mazza .... Barry/Bo
  • Sulo Williams .... Manny
  • Sandra Bernhard .... Edie Carlson
  • Shannon Finn .... Karen
  • Jacqueline Klein .... Laura
  • Marni Freedman .... Playwright, Writer
  • Carlos De Los Rios .... Screenwriter
  • Matthew Huffman .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

  • Awards and film festivals:
    • *
  • Playing Mona Lisa official movie site
  • Playing Mona Lisa movie trailers:
    • QuickTime
  • Studios and distributors:

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

Playing Mona Lisa is one of those bland little romance films that should be direct-to-TV rather than direct-to-video. It's like those B-grade 70s films full of B-actors that turn up on TV in the middle of the afternoon - or very early in the morning - in which not much happens very slowly to people you don't care about.

Media intelligence (DVD)

  • *

Security censorship classification

M (Medium level coarse language, drug use)

Surveillance time

93 minutes (1:33 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

DVD rental: 16 October 2002
VHS rental: 16 October 2002

Cinema surveillance images

Playing Mona Lisa image
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