Movies The 90s

High Fidelity

High Fidelity is a novel written by British novelist, Nick Hornby. It was originally published in 1995 and has since sold over one million copies. It is considered a humorous novel despite touching on more dramatic topics. It is a quintessential Generation X novel.

The book takes place in London, where the protagonist, Rob Fleming, has just been left by his girlfriend. The music-loving-record-store-owning Fleming decides to get in touch with his ex-girlfriends from his five most important relationships. The novel centers around how he reconnects with these women in his life and finally begins to understand his own failings and fears within a relationship. The style of the novel has been described as “male confessional.”

The title of the book comes from an Elvis Costello song of the same name. One of the lyrics in the song aptly describes the protagonist, “some things you never get used to, even though you feel like another man.’


In 2000, the book was made into a movie. The rights were acquired from Nick Hornby for $500,000. It starred John Cusack as Fleming (who is renamed as Rob Gordon) and the story setting was moved from London to Chicago. It was well received by critics and viewers alike.  The movie was directed by Stephen Frears (he also directed The Queen and Philomena) and the screenplay was written by Cusak and Frears together.

The soundtrack from the movie, which featured songs by The Kinks, The Velvet Underground and Stereolab. It sold very favorably.

Other books by Nick Hornby:

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