At the outset of the novel, the Lisbons seem like a fairly normal Catholic family living in Grosse Pointe, Michigan in the 1970s. The father is a math teacher at the local high school and the mother is a homemaker. The family has five daughters: 13-year-old Cecilia, 14-year-old Lux, 15-year-old Bonnie, 16-year-old Mary, and 17-year-old Therese.
Their lives change dramatically within one summer when Cecilia, a stoic and astute girl described as an "outsider", attempts suicide by cutting her wrists. A few weeks later, the girls throw a chaperoned party at which Cecilia jumps from their second story window and succeeds in ending her life.
Afterwards, life seemingly returns to normal for the Lisbons — although the cause of Cecilia’s suicide and its aftereffects on the family are popular subjects of neighborhood gossip. The mystique of the Lisbon girls also increases for the neighborhood boys, the narrators of the novel.
Lux begins a romance with local heartthrob Trip Fontaine. Trip negotiates with the overprotective Mr. and Mrs. Lisbon to take Lux to a homecoming dance, on the condition that he finds dates for the other three girls. The girls attend the dance but Trip and Lux sneak off afterwards to have sex and Lux misses curfew as a result.
Afterwards, the Lisbons become recluses: Mrs. Lisbon pulls all the girls out of school as punishment for Lux's actions, and Mr. Lisbon is fired for his increasingly erratic behavior. The Lisbons do not care for their house or garden anymore and almost never leave their home. A strange smell coming from the house permeates the neighborhood. From a safe distance, all the people in the neighborhood watch the Lisbons' lives deteriorate, but no one can summon up the courage to intervene.
During this time, the Lisbons become increasingly fascinating to the neighborhood in general and the narrator boys in particular. The boys call the Lisbon girls and communicate by playing records over the telephone for the girls. Also, Lux begins a series of promiscuous sexual encounters on the Lisbon’s roof.
Eventually, the girls send a message to the boys asking for help escaping the house. But moments after the boys arrive one night to rescue them, the four sisters kill themselves for no apparent reason (Mary's life is saved in the hospital, but she succeeds in ending her life with sleeping pills a few weeks later). It is noted that the mass suicide comes a year after Cecilia's first attempt. After the suicide "free-for-all," Mr. and Mrs. Lisbon leave the neighborhood. The house is sold and most of the Lisbons' personal effects are either thrown out or sold in a garage sale. The narrators scavenge through the trash to collect much of the "evidence" they mention.
James Woods (Sr. Lisbon)
Kathleen Turner (Sra. Lisbon)
Kirsten Dunst (Lux Lisbon)
Josh Hartnett (Trip Fontaine)
Hanna R. Hall (Cecilia Lisbon)
Chelse Swain (Bonnie Lisbon)
A.J. Cook (Mary Lisbon)
Leslie Heyman (Therese Lisbon)
Danny DeVito (Dr. Hornicker)
Scott Glenn (Padre Moody)
Jonathan Tucker (Tim)
Anthony DeSimone (Chase)
Giovanni Ribisi (Narrador - voz)
Audios: French (DD 2.0), English (DD 2.0)
Screen: NTSC Widescreen anamórfico (1.78:1)
Conversion method: DVD-RB v1.26.5 + CCE 22.214.171.124
Video bitrate: 4.991/3.993Kbs
Reduction level: 57,3%
Image format: ISO DVD