High Fidelity (2000)

R   |    |  Comedy, Drama, Music

High Fidelity (2000) Poster

Rob, a record store owner and compulsive list maker, recounts his top five breakups, including the one in progress.


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26 November 2019 | Hey_Sweden
| Sharp, funny, and appealing.
John Cusack is the star, and one of the screenwriters and co-producers, of this likeable adaptation of the Nick Hornby novel. At its core, it capably tells a good romantic story, and does a very amusing job at poking fun at people who lord their supposedly superior musical knowledge (and tastes) over others. It's got an attractive and endearing cast, and it naturally also has a non-stop, eclectic soundtrack.

Cusack plays Rob, the neurotic owner of a record store that is far from prosperous. His employees are the timid Dick (Todd Louiso) and the far more brash Barry (Jack Black, who walks away with the film). After his longtime girlfriend Laura (charming Danish actress Iben Hjejle) dumps him for another man, it forces him to take stock and reflect on the major relationships - and break-ups - of his life.

Cusack is typically engaging, although this viewer could have done without that over-used device of having the main character directly address the camera. The film itself, despite being a little overlong, has some good laughs. I cracked up when Rob fantasized possible reactions to the annoying Ian (an amusing Tim Robbins), including a scenario of him, Barry, and Dick beating the almighty hell out of him.

Some intelligent and pointed dialogue is brought to life by this talented cast, with a steady parade of lovely ladies (Lisa Bonet, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Lili Taylor, Joelle Carter) as the women who have caught Robs' eyes over the years. Rob himself is not too sympathetic for much of the running time, but then, that is the whole point as it takes a while to pinpoint himself as a common denominator, and have his eventual epiphany.

Nice cameo by rock star Bruce Springsteen, too.

Seven out of 10.

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Critic Reviews

Did You Know?


When Barry is talking about Stevie Wonder, he says, "Is it better to burn out than to fade away?" This is a line from the song "Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black)" by Neil Young.


Rob: What came first, the music or the misery? People worry about kids playing with guns, or watching violent videos, that some sort of culture of violence will take them over. Nobody worries about kids listening to thousands, literally thousands of ...


In the deleted scene where Rob calls Caroline, the Chicago Reader columnist, to give her his revised top-five list of favorite songs, he misidentifies War's "Me and Baby Brother" as "Me and My Baby Brother."

Crazy Credits

At the beginning of the movie Dick mentions an album by a fictional band titled 'Pop, Girls, etc'. That became the Hungarian title of the movie.

Alternate Versions

In the version premiered on Comedy Central in 2003, there are numerous dialogue changes due to adult language, but several of these can be clearly identified as alternate takes rather than overdubs:

  • 1. When Rob talks about Deep Purple and his autobiographical record collection, Dick simply says "no way."
  • 2. Rob says "is that Peter Frampton? Why?" instead of "is that Peter f'ing Frampton?" just before he enters the lounge.
  • 3. Rob says "it made me feel like less of a... whoever the hell Laura thinks I am" during the phone call to Liz.
  • 4. Rob shouts to himself "who... is Ian!?" and rips posters off the wall after he talks to Liz.
  • 5. When Liz comes into the store, she says "hey Rob... you selfish jerk!"
  • 6. In the bar, Rob says (due to a mis-edit) "but really good" twice (once in a medium shot and again in the close-up) and asks "how come suddenly I'm the world's biggest jerk?"
  • 7. At dinner with Rob, Penny calls the guy she slept with a "dirtbag" and tells Rob to "go to Hell."
  • 8. The whole scene where Rob gets Charlie's answering machine is a different take, again without language.
  • 9. The shoplifting scene has a differently paced take when Rob says "how much is this deck worth to you and how much did you steal? Can you do the math?"
  • 10. Charlie says "no, I can't believe you, Rob. I knew it. You are," in an alternate take when she sits down after the dinner party scene, instead of repeatedly cursing.
  • 11. Barry's "top five songs about death" is a different take and even has Rob adding "Not Dark Yet, by Dylan" before he runs off to get the phone.
  • 12. Rob asks "Hey! What the hell is this, huh? What is this?" when he finds Laura's flyer.
  • 13. The scene where Rob offers Barry money not to play at the release party is different.


Lo Boob Oscillator
Written by
Tim Gane and Laetitia Sadier
Performed by Stereolab
Courtesy of Sub Pop Records


Plot Summary

Synopsis (WARNING: Spoilers)


Comedy | Drama | Music | Romance


Release Date:

31 March 2000


English, Danish

Country of Origin


Filming Locations

Chicago, Illinois, USA

Box Office


$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,429,107 2 April 2000

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:


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