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Encyclopedia > Inside Monkey Zetterland
Movie poster
Movie poster

Inside Monkey Zetterland is a 1992 film penned by former child actor Steve Antin. Image File history File links Monkeyzetterland. ... Image File history File links Monkeyzetterland. ... 1992 (MCMXCII) was a leap year starting on Wednesday. ... The term child actor is generally applied to a child acting in motion pictures or television, but also to an adult who began his or her acting career as a child; to avoid confusion the latter is also called a former child actor. ... Steve Antin (born February 17, 1961 in Portland, Oregon, USA) was one of the many faces of child actors from the 1980s who appeared in several films but never really broke out as a performer. ...


Struggling former child actor and now-adult screenwriter Monkey Zetterland (Antin) is working on a historical screenplay based around the defunct Red Car subway of Los Angeles. He lives in a building owned by his neurotic mother Honor Zetterland (Katherine Helmond), who is a famous soap opera star. Secretly hoping there is a future in acting for Monkey, she is trying to ween her hairdresser son (his brother) Brent Zetterland (Tate Donovan) into a film star. Katherine Helmond (born July 5, 1928 as Katherine Marie Helmond in Galveston, Texas) is an American film, theater and television actress. ... Tate Donovan (born September 25, 1963) is an American actor. ...

As the film begins, Honor shows up at Monkey's house to borrow his epsom salts at the same time that his disagreeable girlfriend Daphne (Debi Mazar) arrives. From this point on the film dissolves into a character study with little plot development as new and old characters interact and form a quirky family unit. Sister Grace Zetterland (Patricia Arquette) arrives in tears to reveal that her lesbian girlfriend (Sophia Coppola) has gotten pregnant in an attempt to bring the two of them closer. Honor rents the basement apartment to Sascha (Rupert Everett) and Sofie (Martha Plimpton), a gay man and woman posing as husband and wife while publishing an underground newsletter that outs closeted homosexuals in the entertainment industry. Debi Mazar, on cover of Deborah Mazar (born August 15, 1964 in Queens, New York), better known as Debi Mazar, is an American actress, best known for her trademark Jersey Girl-type appearances, and as edgy, sharp-tongued women in independent films. ... Patricia T Arquette (born April 8, 1968) is an Emmy Award-winning and a Golden Globe Award-nominated American actress. ... Sofia Coppola Sofia Coppola (born May 14, 1971) is an American film director, actress, producer, and writer and is the daughter of director Francis Ford Coppola. ... Rupert James Hector Everett (born May 29, 1959) is an English actor and a former singer. ... Plimpton at the New York premiere of Miramaxs Kill Bill: Volume 1 Martha Plimpton (born Martha Carradine on November 16, 1970, in New York City) is former model turned actress who was born to famous actor parents Keith Carradine and Shelley Plimpton. ...

As if this weren't enough, a creepy woman (Ricki Lake) shows up with a fan letter for Honor, and another kooky lady, Imogene (Sandra Bernhard), begins heavily, openly pursuing Monkey's attention. After a series of confrontations, Daphne moves out, and around the same time the family's absentee father (who has frequently left home for long periods of time throughout their lives) surfaces in time for Thanksgiving. Ricki Lake Ricki Pamela Lake (born September 21, 1968 in Hastings-on-Hudson, New York) is an American actress and tabloid talk show host, best known for her long-running Ricki Lake talk show. ... Sandra Bernhard (born June 6, 1955 in Flint, Michigan) is an American actress, comedian, author and singer. ...

While everyone busies themselves with their personal issues, Grace discovers that Sascha and Sofie are in fact terrorists who intend to bomb a local insurance agency that is denying medical coverage to people with HIV and AIDS. Sofie comes up with a plan to send Grace into the agency with a bomb, which Grace and Sascha believe is set up to give Grace enough time to escape. It is not, and Grace dies in the explosion.

This event pulls everyone out of their own selfish interests and forces them to re-examine their lives and the people around them. The patriarch of the family disappears again; Grace's lover and her baby are taken in by the family, and Monkey decides to let Imogene get closer to him. Then, just as things are starting to fall into place, Monkey comes home to find his apartment ransacked and his finally finished script stolen. It was his only copy.

Later that evening the woman who left a fan letter for Honor arrives with Monkey's stolen script and a gun. She tries to shoot Honor, but hits the family dog instead. She is taken down, but the ensuing drama pulls the remaining emotional conflicts of the family into place. Honor accepts that Monkey is never going to become a famous actor. Instead of pushing him that way, she uses her connections to get his script published - with brother Brent as the star.

Release and critical reception

The film debuted at the Toronto Film Festival on September 12th, 1992, and was released to a very limited number of theaters in the United States in 1993. Donovan was nominated as best supporting male at the 1994 Independent Spirit Awards; the film was nomianted for the Grand Jury Prize (dramatic) at the 1993 Sundance Film Festival. The film was released in 1994 on VHS and in 1995 on Laserdisc; it has never been released to DVD. The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) is generally considered to be one of the five top film festivals in the world. ... 1993 (MCMXCIII) was a common year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar and marked the Beginning of the International Decade to Combat Racism and Racial Discrimination (1993-2003). ... Founded in 1984, the Independent Spirit Awards were originally known as the FINDIE (Friends of Independents) Awards and presented winners with Plexiglas pyramids containing suspended shoestrings representing the paltry budgets of independent films. ... A prize is an award given to a person or a group of people to recognise and reward actions or achievements. ... The Sundance Film Festival is a film festival in the United States, and ranks alongside the Cannes, Moscow, Venice, Berlin, and Toronto festivals as one of the most prestigious in the world. ...

The film was generally well received by critics. Marjorie Baumgarten of The Austin Chronicle gave the film three stars, stating "These actors all create riveting snapshots of oddballs in action," but also noting the film has a "rambling storyline".1 These same characteristics that were praised in positive reviews were the same ones panned in negative ones, such as Desson Howe of The Washington Post who states: "After the characters have taken up most of the movie airing their idiosyncrasies, they undergo melodramatic fates that reveal little more than Antin's recession of an imagination." 2 The Washington Post is the largest newspaper in Washington, D.C., the capital of the United States. ...

The film did however cause a rift between real life brothers Steve Antin and Jonathon Antin as Jonathon was insulted over the film's close resemblance to their own family and how the character Brent Zetterland was depicted as vapid, vain, oafish and slow. Steve Antin (born February 17, 1961 in Portland, Oregon, USA) was one of the many faces of child actors from the 1980s who appeared in several films but never really broke out as a performer. ... Jonathan on Blow Out Jonathan Antin (born August 16, 1967 in Los Angeles County, California) [1] is a hair stylist and the owner of 2 Los Angeles hair salons; Jonathan Salon West Hollywood and Jonathan Salon Beverly Hills. ...

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Inside Monkey Zetterland

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External links

  Results from FactBites:
Encyclopedia: Inside Monkey Zetterland (687 words)
Inside Monkey Zetterland was a 1992 film penned by former child actor Steve Antin.
Semi-autobiographical, it follows the life of the title character, a former child actor living in Los Angeles, California with his girlfriend (played by Debi Mazar.) His mother, Katherine Helmond, a famous soap star, harasses him to be more like his hairdresser brother.
Inside Monkey Zetterland at the Internet Movie Database
  More results at FactBites »



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