Arlington Road (1999)

Fear Thy Neighbor

Plot outline

A man begins to suspect his neighbors are not what they appear to be and their secrets could be deadly.


A man begins to suspect his neighbors are not what they appear to be and their secrets could be deadly. - João Ferreira

In suburban Reston, Virginia, George Washington University American History professor Michael Faraday is still mourning the death of his wife, FBI agent Leah Faraday, after three years. His inside knowledge of the agency colors what he teaches in his classes. Although on good terms with Leah's ex-partner, Whit Carver, and the agency in general, Michael wants the agency at least to acknowledge their responsibility in her death in the line of duty. Michael is moving on with his personal life, he being in a serious relationship with his former teaching assistant Brooke Wolfe. Although he likes Brooke, Michael and Leah's nine year old son, Grant Faraday, may not yet be quite ready for Brooke to be a permanent part of their lives. It is only in helping adolescent Brady Lang who he sees in medical distress that Michael meets his new neighbors, Oliver and Cheryl Lang, Brady's parents. In the process, Michael and Brooke becomes friends with the Langs, as Grant and Brady become friends. However, the more time that he spends with them and catches discrepancies in their stories, Michael becomes suspicious that the Langs may not be everything they appear on the surface. As such, Michael, against Brooke's concerns of invasion of the Lang's privacy, begins his own investigation of Oliver in particular. What Michael discovers has serious national security implications, as well as possible life threatening dangers to him, Brooke and Grant. - Huggo

In Washington, Michael Faraday is coming home in the suburb and he sees the son of his neighbor, Brady Lang, burnt and wounded walking through the Arlington Road. He goes to the hospital with the child and befriends his neighbors Oliver Lang and Cheryl Lang that live in front of his house in the waiting room. The widower Michael is history professor at George Washington University, where he presently teaches terrorism, and raises his son Grant Faraday alone since the death is his beloved wife Leah. She was an FBI agent that died in action during an assignment with her partner Whit Carver. Now Michael is in a relationship with his former student Brooke Wolfe. Soon Michael suspects of Oliver might be a terrorist initially based on a blueprint that his neighbor tells that it is a shopping mall but Michael believes it is a building and with returned correspondences in the mailbox. However his theory of conspiracy is rejected by Whit and Brooke. Michael becomes obsessed and investigates the life of his neighbor. Is Michael paranoid or is he correct in his suspicious? - Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Widowed when his FBI agent wife is killed in an operation against suspected terrorists, a college professor becomes increasingly obsessed with the culture and sub-society of these dangerous groups. The arrival of new neighbors, gives him new spirit, as they are gregarious and friendly, with a ten-year-old boy that his son can be friends with. He is even beginning to see another woman. However, he begins to suspect something is odd about the neighbors, something about the way they don't want him to see certain parts of the house, or a set of blueprints they have there. Are his neighbors terrorists... or is the stress of losing his wife merely driving him past the point of paranoia? - Anonymous

Michael Faraday is a recently widowed college history professor living alone with his ten-year-old son Grant in the suburbs of Washington, DC. The death of Michael's wife Leah, an FBI agent killed in the line of duty, continues to haunt both father and son. Michael and Grant are soon befriended by the Langs, a vivacious, All-American family new to the neighborhood. The parents, Oliver and Cheryl Lang, go out of their way to draw Michael into their lives. Soon, Grant and young Brody Lang become inseparable friends. The Faradays' long period of mourning seems finally to be over. As the two families become closer, Michael begins to have misgivings about the gregarious Oliver. After catching Oliver in a few insignificant lies, the more Michael learns about Oliver, the more his uneasiness grows. With Grant spending more and more time at the Langs, Michael decides to check into the background of his neighbors. What he discovers deepens the mystery, arousing suspicions that shake Michael to the core of his existence. The Langs are definitely not who they claim to be; but who are they? Why have they come to Washington, DC? - PFE publicity

When Michael Faraday, single father, accidentally stumbles across a little lie from his new neigbour, he gets suspicious. As a university professor who gives classes on terrorism history and whose wife got killed in the line of FBI-duty, his fatherly protection instincts arise much faster than in normal people. Grant, his son, became the best friend of Brady Lang. Only that Brady's father did not always carry the name Lang. Digging deeper and deeper, Michael Faraday excavates a very interesting and frightening history. But what we didn't think of: From whose point of view is that history frightening? - Julian Reischl