The Unbelievable Truth

Starring: Robert John Burke & Adrienne Shelly Director: Hal Hartley  Rated: R: Restricted
Can a nice girl from Long Island find happiness with a mass murderer?
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Rating 5.0
2 ratings
Movie on IMDb
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Item:  OLV 603D
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DVD Features:

  • ANAMORPHIC WIDESCREEN ASPECT RATIO
  • Rated: R
  • Run Time: 1 hours, 30 minutes
  • Video: Color
  • Released:
  • Originally Released: 1989
  • Label: Olive Films
  • Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
  • Note: Tut & Its Consequences making of The Unbelievable Truth
    • Opera No. 1-short film written & directed by Hal Hartley with Adrienne Shelly & Parker Posey
  • Aspect Ratio: Widescreen
  • Audio:
    • Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo

Performers, Cast and Crew:

Starring &
Performer: , &
Directed by
Screenwriting by
Produced by &
Director of Photography:

Entertainment Reviews:

Rolling Stone - 08/09/1990
"...[A] wildly hilarious black comedy....[Hartley] combines a rigorous social conscience with the exuberance of fresh comic thinking..."
New York Times - 07/20/1990
"...Arch....All the offbeat appeal of its strange characters..."
Los Angeles Times - 08/17/1990
"...It's fresh and actually gets somewhere....Hartley reveals a serious concern for how people tend to look at relationship as if they were business deals and how alienating the results are..."
Sight and Sound - 07/01/2004
"Hartley's determination to skew convention at every turn remains diverting."
A.V. Club - 11/03/2010
"THE UNBELIEVABLE TRUTH was still like nothing else at the time, an offbeat relationship study with dialogue pitched somewhere between Jim Jarmusch deadpan and the rhythms of a Samuel Beckett play."

Product Description:

In Hal Hartley's first feature film, THE UNBELIEVABLE TRUTH, Josh (Robert Burke), a criminal who has just been released from prison, returns home to Lindenhurst, Long Island. There he's hired as a mechanic by Vic Hugo (Christopher Cooke), the owner of a local garage. Through a mutual interest in George Washington, Josh falls in love with Vic's daughter, Audry (Adrienne Shelly). However, their romance proves to be difficult due to Audry's possessive ex-boyfriend and the mystery surrounding Josh's past.

THE UNBELIEVABLE TRUTH effectively establishes Hartley's unique aesthetic, which is darkly humorous, oddly clever, and subtly meditative. Rather than merely hint at their thoughts, the characters in this film (and other Hartley films) tend to speak exactly what they're thinking, openly expressing things often left unsaid. A quirky take on the romantic comedy, this is the debut of a highly original American filmmaker.

Plot Keywords:

Essential Cinema | Murder | Recommended | Romance | Theatrical Release

Production Notes:

  • Film was shot in a two week period in 1989.
  • Feature film debut for director Hal Hartley.
  • Produced by Action Features.
  • Shown at the AFI Festival in Los Angeles April 21, 1989.
Olive Films

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Product Info:

  • Sales Rank: 69,868
  • UPC: 887090060301
  • Shipping Weight: 0.19/lbs (approx)
  • International Shipping: 1 item