Adoration (2008 film)

Adoration is a 2008 Canadian drama film directed by Atom Egoyan and starring Rachel Blanchard, Scott Speedman and Devon Bostick.

U.S. theatrical poster
Directed byAtom Egoyan
Written byAtom Egoyan
Produced byRobert Lantos
Jennifer Weiss
Simone Urdl
StarringArsinée Khanjian
Scott Speedman
Noam Jenkins
Devon Bostick
CinematographyPaul Sarossy
Edited bySusan Shipton
Music byMychael Danna
Distributed bySony Pictures Classics (USA)
Release date
Running time
100 minutes
Budget$4 million[1]

The film was first shown at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival,[2] where it won the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury and was nominated for the Palme d'Or. Adoration won "Best Canadian Feature Film – Special Jury Citation" at the 2008 Toronto International Film Festival. The film had its U.S. premiere in April 2009 at the San Francisco International Film Festival, and went into U.S. release on May 8, 2009.


High school French teacher Sabine reads to her class as a translation exercise a French newspaper report of a terrorist who planted a bomb in the airline luggage of his pregnant girlfriend. If the bomb had detonated, it would have killed her, her unborn child, and many others, but it was discovered in time by Israeli security personnel. Egoyan based the story partly on the 1986 Hindawi affair.[3]

In the course of translating, Simon, who lives with his maternal uncle Tom, imagines that the news item is his own family's story: that his Palestinian father Sami was the terrorist, the woman was his mother Rachel, an accomplished violinist, and he was her unborn child. Years ago, Sami crashed the family car, killing both himself and Rachel, making Simon an orphan. Influenced by his maternal grandfather, Morris, who disliked Sami, Simon has always feared that the crash was not an accident but intentional.

Sabine asks him to develop the story as a drama exercise, to read it to the class, and for dramatic effect to pretend that it really happened. He does so, and discussions evolve on the Internet about the story. Sabine is fired for making Simon lie.

Tom, who is a tow truck driver, tows Sabine's car away. Sabine follows him in a taxi, and by mobile phone she offers him a meal in a restaurant. Later she reveals to him that she had been married to Sami for 5 years, until Sami met Rachel.



The Internet discussion sessions featured in the film were edited from a two- to four-hour improvised group discussion undertaken on the Internet by several of Egoyan's friends and fellow artists.[4]


The film received mostly positive reviews. On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, Adoration has a score of 63% based on 102 critics, with an average rating of 6.1/10, the critical consensus stating, "A complex and thought-provoking work, Atom Egoyan's Adoration works well as both mystery and engaging drama."[5] On Metacritic, the film has a score of 64 out of 100, based on 20 reviews.[6]


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2009-12-22. Retrieved 2009-01-02.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ "Atom Egoyan's 'Adoration' to compete at Cannes". CTV Television Network. April 23, 2008. Archived from the original on May 7, 2008. Retrieved August 19, 2009.
  3. ^ Walsh, David (29 July 2009). "Atom Egoyan's Adoration: Also not very compelling". World Socialist Web Site. International Committee of the Fourth International. Archived from the original on 29 November 2009. Retrieved 2009-11-08.
  4. ^ Ellis, Suzanne (August 26, 2008). "Maury Chaykin A Man Of Many Parts". CityNews. Archived from the original on August 2, 2010. Retrieved August 19, 2009.
  5. ^ "Adoration (2009)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved January 11, 2019.
  6. ^ "Adoration Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved January 11, 2019.

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