By John Sayles

  • Genre: Drama
  • Release Date: 1983-01-18
  • Advisory Rating: R
  • Runtime: 1h 52min
  • Director: John Sayles
  • Production Company: Winwood Company
  • Production Country: United States of America
  • iTunes Price: USD 9.99
  • iTunes Rent Price: USD 3.99
From 16 Ratings


John Sayles second feature, Lianna, is about a woman who finds herself starting life over after coming out of the closet as a lesbian. Lianna (Linda Griffiths) is married to Dick Massey (Jon De Vries), a charismatic English professor who also teaches film classes, and has two children Spencer (Jesse Solomon) and Theda (Jessica Wight MacDonald). Lianna's life is a succession of domestic errands and boring faculty parties, however her heaviest cross to bear is dealing with her waning marriage to Dick. They married when Lianna was still an undergraduate, and the domineering style that works well for Dick in the classroom is beginning to wear thin at home. In addition, Lianna often finds herself consoling her children after they have been verbally one-upped by their father. In order to find intellectual stimulus, Lianna takes a college extension child-psychology course taught by Ruth (Jane Hallaren). When Lianna catches Dick having an affair with a young coed, she finds comfort and eventually true love in the arms of Ruth. However, this comes with a price as everything in her life is turned upside down.



  • Not the best Les film I

    By sburger
    Im not going to lie, I really didn't care for this movie. It's not that it didn't have great historic and artistic value, because it has lots of that. It just wasn't entertaining, or even fun to watch. I actually wanted to turn it off, but I figured I'd watch the whole thing to see if it would get better. And if you are looking for some great lesbian movies, I would have to direct you toward "Better than Chocolate" "Loving Annabelle" and "Saving Face." These are my personal favorite's. Hope this helps
  • Great movie.

    By DharmaLogos
    Realistic lesbian portrayal.
  • True History...

    By filmfem
    This film is not just "another lesbian film"... This film opened doors for today's LGBT films both in content and in true independent style. Thank you John Sayles for telling this story with or without the studio system. If you want a great film and a little piece of history, this is it!
  • Classic Film

    By movieboy5000
    Great classic film from a young John Sayles. Interesting character study.
  • Great--NOT

    By macho (wo)- man
    Just what we need, another lesbian movie.
  • Bravo!

    By zebra21
    Great script, interesting dialogue. One of Sayle's best films.
  • well, words don't go far enough

    By fat dude on the corner
    I know everyone needs somebody, but come on. A poorley written plot and bad acting don't help this romance at all, not that a lesbian film stood much of a chance. Movies these days are getting more desperate.
  • Great movie...

    By macnotacno
    This is an amazing film. The characters are well developed and the story is timeless. Kudos to IFC!
  • Groundbreaking film -- beautifully sensitive

    By KeyserSöze
    I am so excited to see John Sayles movies being released in iTunes! He's such a talented writer and director -- one of the few male directors who can truly and honestly portray, in a very sensitive way, what it's like to be a woman. Lianna is such a silently strong character, you want to cheer her on as she comes to grip with and transforms herself into who she really is.