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The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter (1968)

 -  Drama  -  31 July 1968 (USA)
7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 2,392 users  
Reviews: 36 user | 10 critic

When deaf mute Singer moves to a small city to be near his only friend confined in a hospital, he grows attached to his landlady's sensitive 14 year-old daughter.

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 6 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Mick
Laurinda Barrett ...
Mrs. Kelly
...
Blount (as Stacy Keach Jr.)
...
Spiros Antonapoulos
Biff McGuire ...
Mr. Kelly
Percy Rodrigues ...
Doctor Copeland
...
Portia
Jackie Marlowe ...
Bubber
Johnny Popwell ...
Willie
Wayne Smith ...
Harry
Peter Mamakos ...
Spirmonedes
...
Beaudine
Hubert Harper ...
Brannon
Sherri Vise ...
Delores
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Storyline

Sentimental story centers around a deaf-mute, Singer, and Mick, a teenager who lives in the house where he rents a room. Mick and Singer become friends, though they are separated by Singer's lack of communication ability and Mick's struggle with teenage traumas. The lives of the people Singer touches are varied, linked only by their friendship with Singer. His friends include a deaf-mute, a drunk, a and a doctor. Singer does his best to help those around him solve their problems, but who is there to help him solve his own? Written by Melissa Portell <mportell@s-cwis.unomaha.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

...and from this man who could not speak or hear, the girl heard many things.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Release Date:

31 July 1968 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Das Herz ist ein einsamer Jäger  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Mary Badham tested unsuccessfully for the role of Mick. See more »

Goofs

Carnival is supposedly taking place on a warm summer night judging from characters' lightweight costumes but actors' frosty breath can be seen in a number of shots. See more »

Quotes

Mick: [At the gravesite] Why did he do it? I keep asking myself that over and over.
Doctor Copeland: Oh, I don't suppose any of us will ever know that. None of us ever knew him... not really. We all brought our troubles to him, never stopping to think he may have troubles of his own.
See more »

Connections

References The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1938) See more »

Soundtracks

The Color of the Wind Is Cold
Written by Dave Grusin and Hermine Hilton
Performed by Mac Davis (as Scott Davis)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
a heartbreaking experience
2 January 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I saw this movie as a 15 year old when it came out. I remember it was a Saturday night and none of my friends were around. My parents didn't have any plans either and asked if I would like to go to a movie with them. Although spending a Saturday night with ones' parents couldn't be more uncool for a teenage boy, I agreed. The story and performances sucked me in from the beginning and held me there while the unbearable sadness of the final scene tore my heart out. Of course teenage boys aren't supposed to be that sentimental so it took all my strength to hold back this tidal wave of grief that cut through me. As we walked out of the theatre and through the parking lot and got into the car I said nothing. After a few minutes my mother said, "Mark, you're awfully quiet". I shot back at her "leave me alone", which she did. I didn't want reality to intrude upon the profoundly deep feelings I was experiencing. That feeling stayed with me for months. Only decades later did I realize that the movie touched on a very personal sadness in my life that as a teenage boy I couldn't begin to grapple with. Micks' mothers inability to express love for her mirrored a similar void in my relationship with my father. During a particularly depressed part of my adulthood, while I was grappling with the reality of having an unloving father, one day I found myself thinking about this movie. Oh! That's why the movie had such a devastating effect on me! It brought to the surface all of the sadness, isolation and loneliness I suppressed as a child who wasn't loved for who he was! That's the definition of a true work of art. This movie had the ability to allow me to feel what I was unable to as a child and only years later would I be able to understand the reason for the overwhelming sadness I felt then.


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