Synopsis: Howard has a loving wife (Garner), two daughters, a prestigious job as a Manhattan lawyer, and a comfortable home in the suburbs. But inwardly he's suffocating, and eventually he snaps and goes into hiding in his garage attic leaving his family to wonder what happened to him. He observes them from his window - an outsider spying in on his own life - as the days of exile stretch into months. Is it possible to go back to the way things were?
Genre: Drama
Director(s): Robin Swicord
Production: IFC Films
  1 win & 1 nomination.
Rotten Tomatoes:
106 min

Hi, sir.

Just this.


Thank you.


this indemnification clause

clearly states that there

will be no injunctive relief.

And our client's chances

of being rewarded

financially are minimal

at best.

I'll finish it tomorrow.

Can I be blamed for feeling

that things were a little

strange that night?

You don't expect

a power outage

in the spring.

Not without a storm first.

When you're tired

and it's a long day

and you're trying

to get home

you tend to feel all these

little disconnects

as the slow trajectory

of a collapsing civilization.

At least that's where I go.

"In the suburbs,

we live in nature."

That's a quote

from my realtor

the selling phrase she used

when Diana and I

first looked at this place.

Oh, crap.

And you do see

deer, rabbits, crows.

But we don't live in nature.

That's the point

of the suburbs.

You live apart from humans.

And you're protected

from what's wild.


Go on, get out of here.

Go on!

Go on, get out!

Oh, damn it.

Oh, Christ.

Oh, god. Damn it.

Damn it.


Ha! Ha! Go on.

I had quarreled with my wife.

We did this thing

where we would play

at sexual jealousy.

But anyway, um..

Or I played at it

and she was my accomplice.

After 15 years of marriage

jealousy was

the reliable stimulant.

Let's be honest.

When your spouse gets

jealous, it's flattering.

The blood stirs,

the heart pounds.

We'd quarrel..

...and we'd have sex.

Or as Diana would say


we'd f***.

And it works.

The guy you were coming

onto all afternoon.

Until it doesn't.

Obviously, I wasn't

coming on to him --

oh, yeah, obviously.

Well, Diana,

anyone within 10 feet

could see what was going on.

Well, who was watching?

It was a conversation.

I witnessed

the whole thing, Diana.

You were practically

issuing him an invitation.

Only in your peculiar

imagination, Wakefield.


you'll chat up any woman

who even looks at you

and I'm the one who --

no, no, no. You made

a very suggestive remark.

I made an amusing remark.

Oh, amusing? Ah!

Everyone laughed but you.

Well, I failed

to be entertained

by watching my wife

come onto a guy

in a Polo shirt.

I was replying

to something he said.

Something stupid

if you must know..


I am so sick of this --

this constant surveillance.

- You --

- whoa, whoa, whoa --

no, you have muzzled me

to the point where I can't

carry on a conversation

with other parents.

I barely relate

to people anymore --

- you were relating to him.

- What do you not see?

I mean, do you think

I'd be even remotely

inclined to start

something up

with anyone given

the relationship we have?

All I want..

...is to get through the day.

That's what I think about.

Just get through the day.


Why go in there now?

Just to endure another

predictable scene

with my wife.

Soon enough,

they'd all be asleep.



Oh, sh*t.

Sh*t! Ah!

Oh, god.


You know, frankly

I was totally bewildered

by this situation

I had created for myself.

Diana would probably think

I'd been with someone else.

Not that I had ever

given her a reason

to doubt me

in 15 years of marriage.

Oh, my god.

It would be

the weakest of tactics

for me to walk into my house

and try to explain to her

the perfectly

rational sequence

that led me to spend

the night in the garage.

You know,

another woman might have

saved my supper plate

in the refrigerator.

But I lived

in Diana's judgment.

It shone on me

as in a prison cell

where the light

is never turned off.

The immediate solution?

Postpone my entrance 'til

my wife had gone off to work.


Rush, rush, rush.

The bus is here, girls.

Hey, hey, hey, hey.

They forgot their lunches.

Girls, girls, lunch.

They're gonna be late again.

Bye-bye, girls.

Have a good day.

Okay, love you.

Oh, yeah.

The first call

would be to my office.

No, he hasn't come in.


Yesterday evening.

Well, no,

he didn't say anything.

Mm-hmm. Well, he left around

the usual time.

Oh, yes, of course, I will.


Oh, where are you going now?

Surprise, car's still there.

The plot thickens.

After a few calls

to her friends

wouldn't it seem reasonable

to expect

that the assistant curator

of the county museum

would depart for work?

I realize this is

a common enough complaint.

But there are times when I

feel I've spent my life

just waiting for my wife

to get ready

to leave the house.

Oh, you got to be

f***in' kidding me.


What the hell?

Wait a minute, wait a minute

wait a minute.




Yes, officer.

No checks were missing.

Why, why! Where could he be?

Ah. Oh.

There's the hubs.

No wonder you want him back.

He's a stud.

Our town police

are well-paid and polite

and not so different

from the rest of us

in their distant relationship

to actual crime.

Nobody mugged him

or anything.

What? What am I,

a travel agent?

I guarantee

he's at the strip club

right now hangin' around.



Here come the water works.


But then god help us.

The widow, babs.

Right on cue.


Oh, god.

Do you ever shut up?

No, no, no, no.

Don't cry, don't cry.

No. He's not worth it.

There you go.

I have big broad

shoulders, darling.

And if you need to cry,

you just lay your head

right here.

Broad shoulders.

Like a f***in' linebacker.

I'll be here for you.

But, darling,

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E.L. Doctorow

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Wakefield" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 15 Jun 2024. <https://www.scripts.com/script/wakefield_22997>.

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