Cleveland International Film Festival } March 22 – April 1, 2023 } Playhouse Square


Year: 2015
Country: United States
Run Time: 101 minutes


EQUALS takes place in a utopian society where violence and crime have been virtually eradicated—via the genetic elimination of human emotion. People like Nia (Kristen Stewart) and Silas (Nicholas Hoult) live calm, uneventful, drone-like lives. The two work alongside each other in a large office, creating informational publications and exchanging the occasional pleasantry. Life is simple, until a rumor starts to circulate: a disease has broken out; one that causes people to manifest emotions. If discovered by the powers that be, the infected are sent away, never to return. Silas suspects he carries the disease, and when this is confirmed, he becomes an outcast. But he is drawn back to Nia, who is also infected but has managed to hide the symptoms far better than he. Upon discovering they are similarly stricken, they need to decide whether to stay and hide or run for freedom. This future is, at first glance, a beautiful one: high windows, greenery, light-infused work spaces, food and shelter for all. But the viewer starts to feel unease at the spectacle of empty-eyed people moving through yet another day. EQUALS poses the question: could we scientifically suppress the strongest human emotion, or is love so strong it could truly conquer all? –Toronto International Film Festival

CIFF40 Screenings

Friday, April 08, 2016 at 9:00 PM

  • This screening has been cancelled.

Saturday, April 09, 2016 at 1:45 PM

  • This screening has been cancelled.

American Independents Competition

Drake Doremus

Drake Doremus was born in Orange County, California and attended the American Film Institute in Los Angeles. His films have played at numerous festivals, including Sundance, where his feature "Like Crazy" won the Grand Jury Prize for Best Drama.

"Moonpie" (2006), "Spooner" (2009), "Douchebag" (2010, "Like Crazy" (2011), "Breathe In" (2013), EQUALS (2015)

Michael Schaefer, Michael Pruss, Ann Ruark, Chip Diggins, Jay Stern

Nathan Parker

John Guleserian

Jonathan Alberts

Principal Cast
Kristen Stewart, Nicholas Hoult, Guy Pearce, Jacki Weaver

Film Contact
Donate >


Your donation helps fulfill our mission to promote artistically and culturally significant film arts through education and exhibition.

Sign up for our email newsletter

  • facebook
  • twitter
  • instagram
  • youtube
  • flickr
  • alexa
  • foursquare



We promise you, it will make a difference!

Give Today