Believe in Me


1h 26m 1971

Brief Synopsis

Young marrieds become addicted to speed.

Film Details

Also Known As
Speed Is of the Essence
MPAA Rating
Genre
Drama
Release Date
Sep 1971
Premiere Information
New York opening: 8 Dec 1971
Production Company
Chartoff-Winkler Productions, Inc.
Distribution Company
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc.
Country
United States
Location
New York, New York, United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 26m
Sound
Mono
Color
Color (Metrocolor)

Synopsis

In Manhattan, Pamela, a children's book editor, meets Remy, a brilliant intern and colleague of her brother Alan. Remy and Pamela are immediately attracted to each other, and after only a few dates, Pamela moves into Remy's East Village apartment. Soon after, Pamela meets Matthew, their teenaged neighbor, who Remy claims is assisting him with research into drug abuse. One evening Pamela is troubled to discover Remy snorting "speed," an amphetamine, but after he convinces her it is non-addictive, she tries some herself. Over time, Remy's drug-taking increases and a series of incidents gives him further reason to wish to escape reality: the death of his favorite patient, a child with a heart condition; the loss of his job for neglecting his duties; and a debt of $500 due to the drug dealer, Stutter. Concerned for her, Alan tries to convince Pamela to leave Remy, but instead she quits her job in order to help Remy and eventually becomes addicted herself. When Matthew overdoses on drugs and is rushed to the hospital, both Remy and Pamela realize they must quit their habit. However, their resolve is severely tried, when Pamela's application to return to her job is rejected and Remy becomes frustrated trying to pay off his debt. When Pamela states she is hungry, Remy throws a tantrum and intentionally tries to humiliate her. Pamela goes to the hospital to visit Matthew, but is asked to identify his body at the morgue. Shocked into realizing the danger of their situation, Pamela returns to Remy and finds him sitting on the doorstep of their building, after Stutter has tricked him into injecting heroin. Pamela begs Remy to accompany her to Alan's free clinic for drug treatment, but, under the influence of the drug, he tells her to go without him, assuring her that "everything will be okay." Accepting that he is lost to her, she leaves him and proceeds to the clinic alone.

Film Details

Also Known As
Speed Is of the Essence
MPAA Rating
Genre
Drama
Release Date
Sep 1971
Premiere Information
New York opening: 8 Dec 1971
Production Company
Chartoff-Winkler Productions, Inc.
Distribution Company
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc.
Country
United States
Location
New York, New York, United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 26m
Sound
Mono
Color
Color (Metrocolor)

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

The working title of the film was Speed Is of the Essence. Although a print of the film was not viewed, the above screen credits were taken from a cutting continuity in the film's copyright record, and the plot summary was taken from information found in contemporary reviews. While the Hollywood Reporter review reported that the story of the film initially was to be based on Gail Sheehy's 1968 study of New York City's Lower East Side drug subculture published serially in New York magazine under the title Speed Is of the Essence, other sources May also have been used, and onscreen credits list only Israel Horovitz as the writer. Filmfacts reported that the film was shot entirely in New York City. According to the Hollywood Reporter review, Believe in Me contained numerous instances of voice-over narration.
       The Los Angeles Times review reported that the film was "extensively reworked" and reshot by director John G. Avildsen, who is not credited onscreen. Filmfacts reported that principal photography was completed in December 1970, but, months later, M-G-M hired Avildsen for two weeks to shoot additional footage in Manhattan. The newly shot scenes, none of which, according to Filmfacts, were written by Horovitz, were added to the film, which was then re-edited. According to Filmfacts, the scenes shot by Avildsen included most of the hospital sequences at the film's beginning, romantic beach scenes, the scene in which "Stutter" injects "Remy" with heroin, and sequences in which "Pamela" sees the corpse of "Matthew" and breaks up her relationship with "Remy." Filmfacts also reported that during the re-editing, all scenes involving Pamela's parents, who were portrayed by actors Geraldine Fitzgerald and George Rose, were eliminated, and a soundtrack theme composed by Georges Delerue was replaced.

Miscellaneous Notes

Released in United States Winter January 1, 1971

Released in United States Winter January 1, 1971