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The Sterile Cuckoo (1969)

Two students from neighboring colleges in upstate New York are swept up in a tragic romantic interlude calling for a maturity of vision beyond their experience of capabilities. Pookie Adams... See full summary »

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

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Pookie Adams
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Storyline

Two students from neighboring colleges in upstate New York are swept up in a tragic romantic interlude calling for a maturity of vision beyond their experience of capabilities. Pookie Adams - a kooky, lonely misfit with no family and no place to go, insists on calling all those who won't participate in her world, "weirdos," clings to a quiet studious Jerry, who has the ability to make a choice of living in Pookie's private little world or be accepted by the society that Pookie rejects. Unwittingly, it is through their awkward relationship that Pookie actually prepares Jerry for the world of "weirdos" that she doesn't fit into or wish to be apart of. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

First love is beautiful hurt....if it happens to you once, you're lucky.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

M | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

22 October 1969 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Pookie  »

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Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Patty Duke was offered the part that eventually went to Liza Minnelli. See more »

Goofs

Takes place in Upstate New York over the course of an entire school year, yet the location is never snowy, even in December, when all the deciduous trees still have their leaves. See more »

Quotes

'Pookie' Adams: [a little brassily, during her first tryst with Jerry] So, would you like to peel a tomato?
Jerry Payne: [confused] What?
'Pookie' Adams: [quieter, more seductively] Do you want to strip me?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Arrested Development: Queen B. (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Hey Liley, Liley Lo
(uncredited)
based on traditional Caribbean folk song
Written by Elizabeth Austin & Alan Lomax
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User Reviews

Pain can be beautiful

I saw it in 1992 (well past puppy love age) and wrote in my diary:

A heavenly movie! What a visual and aural delight! The plot didn't matter much (love of shy college boy and girl). But then, no good movie puts plot above everything else. Good movies have great atmospheres. They are pleasing to the eye, as well as the ear. This one was blissfully free from cliches, melodrama, formulas, phony excitement. It was pure warmth, charm, prettiness, spontaneity. There were almost no close-ups. The scenery was breathtaking, the pacing calm and gentle. There were whispers! Whispering is so charming, so intimate. Liza Minelli was never better. This film gave me a great boost, making me feel connected with fellow humans.


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