Lovely & Amazing (2002)



Critic Consensus: The bitingly truthful Lovely & Amazing is a smart and perceptive female character study.

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Movie Info

Jane Marks is the matriarch of a confused trio of daughters -- a heady brew of vanity, insecurity and humor -- that seem to have nothing in common. Former homecoming queen Michelle, the eldest daughter, is in a loveless marriage with a spouse who does not appreciate her decidedly obscure artistic endeavors. Younger sister Elizabeth, a self-doubting actress whose career is beginning to take off, compulsively takes home stray dogs, saving them whether or not they need to be saved. Only the youngest sister, Annie, an adopted African American eight-year-old, seems emotionally equipped to stand a chance at rising above the family's legacy. But on the threshold of what already promises to be a confusing adolescence, Annie has developed a preoccupation with her appearance - natural enough for a pre-teen - but given her adoptive family's history, quite possibly a hint of what's to come for the newest member of the Mark's family. Each of the women seeks redemption in her own haphazard way, but whatever salvation they find is illusory and short-lived. When complications from cosmetic surgery threaten Jane's well being, the family of comically self-absorbed women must quickly find room for each other in their lives to offer comfort and strength.
R (for language and nudity)
Art House & International , Comedy , Drama
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
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Catherine Keener
as Michelle Marks
Brenda Blethyn
as Jane Marks
Emily Mortimer
as Elizabeth Marks
Aunjanue Ellis
as Lorraine
Michael Nouri
as Dr. Crane
Scott Adsit
as Young Man at Phone
Dreya Weber
as Donna
Nate Richert
as Other Teenage Boy
Kristen Dalton
as Saleswoman
Mariah O'Brien
as Kevin's TV Costar
Greer Goodman
as ER Doctor
Elayn Taylor
as Jane's Nurse
Mark Beltzman
as Premiere Guest
Raven Goodwin
as Annie Marks
Branden Williams
as Teenage Boy
Brooke Allison
as Pool Administrator
Alan Naggar
as McDonald's Customer
Jeremy Kramer
as Premiere Photographer
Tennison Hightower
as Baldasaro Salesgirl
Jeanne McCarthy
as Casting Director
Ileen Getz
as Saleswoman
Ryan Wolfe
as McDonald's Clerk
John Srednicki
as Premiere Guest
Evan Miranda
as Director
Jerome Butler
as Policeman
Stacy Jorgensen
as Lorraine's Pool Friend
Debbie Waldman
as Romy Rosemont
Tray Ruptash
as Photographer
Jennifer Zehnder
as Teased Girl
Cory Joffe
as Customer
Dawn Saucier
as Bertender
Lee Garrington
as Jordan's Mom
Madeline Moskowitz
as Premiere Guest
Eric Wizenreid
as Parking Attendant
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Critic Reviews for Lovely & Amazing

All Critics (121) | Top Critics (32)

Observed without corny resolutions and paced to allow for reflection, the film is understated but spot on.

Full Review… | February 8, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

A film of this sort demands superb, seemingly effortless acting, and Holofcener gets it at every turn.

Full Review… | July 26, 2002
Miami Herald
Top Critic

This is a fine, funny, humane film.

Full Review… | July 26, 2002
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

This is soap opera with a brain, as she reveals four people ... at their most unguarded and, therefore, honest and bitterly funny.

July 19, 2002
Washington Post
Top Critic

The ensemble Holofcener has assembled comprises some of the best actresses working today, and they inhabit their roles with the astringency and softness these characters demand.

Full Review… | July 19, 2002
Washington Post
Top Critic

The impressive thing about Holofcener's non-judgemental generosity with character, which at times recalls an American Mike Leigh, is that she makes no concessions to easy endearment.

Full Review… | July 19, 2002
Toronto Star
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Lovely & Amazing


The fat black adopted girl is really, really funny. I do think Nicole Holofcener has a gift in comedy, but I don't like this as much as Please Give.

Jennifer Xu
Jennifer Xu

Super Reviewer

Not really so lovely, and definitely not amazing. Just average...

Cynthia S.
Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

I love Catherine Keener and I liked this movie, a touching human story. I am just a sucker for these types of movies. Just goes to show you how insecurities can affect us no matter who we are and what our lives end up being like.

Megan S
Megan S

Super Reviewer

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