The Human Stain

Watch The Human Stain

"How far would you go to escape the past?"
  • R
  • 2003
  • 1 hr 46 min
  • 6.2  (31,751)
  • 57

The Human Stain, released in 2003 and directed by Robert Benton, is a drama film based on the novel of the same name by Philip Roth. The film stars Anthony Hopkins, Nicole Kidman, and Ed Harris in lead roles. Set in the late 1990s, the storyline revolves around the life and problems of Coleman Silk, a former classics professor at a New England college, who is accused of making a racial slur.

The movie opens with the introduction of the protagonist, Coleman Silk (played by Anthony Hopkins), who is an eminent classics professor at Athena College. He leads a satisfying and fulfilling life and has recently begun a romantic relationship with Faunia Farley, a much younger college janitor played by Nicole Kidman. However, things take a nasty turn after Silk innocuously mentions the word "spooks" during one of his classes. A group of black students take offense to the word and accuse Silk of racism.

Silk, however, maintains that he didn't use the word in a racist context and that he was referring to the ghosts in Greek mythology. The accusation snowballs into a scandal, and Silk is branded as a racist. Frustrated and disillusioned with the college's administration, Silk resigns from his position. Faunia suggests that he writes a memoir denouncing the allegations against him, which he eventually does.

One day, while they're out for a drive, Faunia tells Coleman her story of how she was raped by her ex-husband, who later killed their children and her mother. Faunia herself has a history of mental illness and is estranged from her family. Coleman listens to her story compassionately, and the scene is indicative of the emotional depth the two characters share.

Coleman faces criticism from his girlfriend's ex-husband Lester Farley, played by Ed Harris. Farley is a Vietnam War veteran with a violent streak and blames Silk for his current relationship troubles. Meanwhile, an investigative journalist, Nathan Zuckerman, played by Gary Sinise, takes an interest in Silk's story and begins to investigate the allegations against him.

As the story progresses, the audience learns more about Silk's past. He was from a poor family and only managed to make a life for himself through hard work and dedication. However, his past holds a dark secret, and the movie builds up to its reveal with a great deal of anticipation. The film's title itself refers to this secret as it is revealed in the final moments.

The Human Stain is a powerful and emotional movie that deals with themes of identity, race, and relationships. It is a poignant reminder that our pasts never truly leave us and that even the most well-intentioned words can be interpreted in different ways. The performances of the three lead actors, Hopkins, Kidman, and Harris, are all brilliant, and the movie's direction and cinematography ensure that the audience is thoroughly immersed in the story.

In conclusion, The Human Stain is a must-watch movie for anyone who enjoys drama and wants to explore themes of identity, race, and relationships. The film is a poignant and powerful reminder that even the most well-intentioned actions and words can have unintended consequences, and the audience will be moved by the story's emotional depth and complexity.

The Human Stain is a 2003 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 46 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.2 and a MetaScore of 57.

The Human Stain
Where to Watch The Human Stain
The Human Stain is available to watch free on Kanopy. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent The Human Stain for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 46 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.2  (31,751)
  • Metascore