Six Degrees of Separation (1993)


“I read somewhere that everybody on this planet is separated by only six other people. Six degrees of separation between us and everyone else on this planet. The President of the United States, a gondolier in Venice, just fill in the names. I find it extremely comforting that we’re so close. I also find it like Chinese water torture, that we’re so close because you have to find the right six people to make the right connection… I am bound, you are bound, to everyone on this planet by a trail of six people.” – Ouisa Kitteridge

Number of Times Seen – Twice (cable in the 90’s and 21 Oct 2019)

Brief Synopsis – A wealthy New York city couple meet a young black man who seems to be very familiar with them despite the fact that something seems strange about him.

My Take on it – This is a film that I saw years ago and didn’t recall much about.

In my quest to watch and review all films that have garnered Oscar nominations for their cast, I decided to give this another watch in order to refresh my memory of the story.

This is a movie that tells an intriguing tale about the way that the various social classes can meet even when the situations might be a bit strange or awkward at first.

The main cast of this film is great with Stockard Channing, Donald Sutherland and Will Smith all doing amazing jobs with these roles while also making them each feel so real and genuine in all that they say and do throughout.

Channing was nominated for an Oscar for Best Actress for her work here even though she isn’t the stand out among the three leads.

That is actually Smith who in a role that is very much against type for him both before and after he made this film gives the most powerful performance of the trio.

The story is paced quite well and the exquisite dialogue helps make this even more interesting to watch because it is essentially a story that is being told to us since it mostly (if not entirely) already occurred yet still remains so important in these characters lives.

This movie originated as a stage play and I am quite curious to see how this kind of story plays out on stage due to the way it moves along.

What I found very ironic here though is the fact that people now a days are much more familiar with the term of the title than people were when this originally came out over 27 years ago and therefore there is no need for most people to get an understanding of the title and wait for the characters to explain the concept.

This is a movie that is all about the various connections that people have to one another and whether there is a way to forge closer connections without the need of having to go through all of the six steps normally needed and they do a great job with this whole idea here.

Bottom Line – Very intriguing story about how the various social classes can meet on terms that seem a bit strange.  The cast is superb with Channing, Sutherland and Smith all giving amazing performances because they each feel so genuine and authentic in all that they say and do. Channing was nominated for an Oscar for Best Actress for her work in this film even though she isn’t the standout among the three main cast. Smith obviously stands out the most in this film largely due to the fact that he plays a character very different from any that he had played prior to making this and ever since.  The story is moved along so well by the dialogue which helps keep thing very captivating because it is essential a story being told about events that already occurred. I am actually quite interested in seeing how such a story could actually play out on stage since this originated as a stage play.  The irony that when this film came out 26 years ago, people were much less familiar with the term of the title than they are now which means that viewers can now have a better comprehension of the film’s premise right from the start with =out the need for the characters to explain it to them half way through the story.  This is a film about connections between people both who are close and who are far and they do a nice job dealing with that idea. Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Paul (Will Smith) passes himself off as Sidney Poitier’s son. In real life, when Smith met Poitier for the first time, the veteran actor said, “well, you’re almost handsome enough to be my son.” (From IMDB)

Rating – Globe Worthy (8/10)

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One thought on “Six Degrees of Separation (1993)

  1. Pingback: Did They Get it Right? – Best Actress – Oscars 1993 | MovieRob

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