The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds (1972)

PG  |   |  Drama  |  30 May 1973 (France)
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Reviews: 30 user | 14 critic

From the Pullizer Prize winning play by Paul Zindel, this is the story of Beatrice Hunsdorfer and her daughters, Ruth and Matilda. A middle-aged widowed eccentric, Beatrice is looking for ... See full summary »



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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Nell Potts ...
Roberta Wallach ...
Judith Lowry ...
Richard Venture ...
Carolyn Coates ...
Mrs. McKay
Will Hare ...
Junk Man
Estelle Omens ...
Jess Osuna ...
Ellen Dano ...
Janice Vickery
Lynne Rogers ...
Miss Hanley
Roger Serbagi ...
John Lehne ...
Apartment Manager
Michael Kearney ...
Chris Burns


From the Pullizer Prize winning play by Paul Zindel, this is the story of Beatrice Hunsdorfer and her daughters, Ruth and Matilda. A middle-aged widowed eccentric, Beatrice is looking for her life in the classified ads while all about her is the rubble of an unkempt house. All she needs is the right opportunity, she says puffing on a cigarette. Poorly equipped to survive the vagaries of modern life, she has nonetheless always managed to muddle through. Ruth, epileptic and making her way through the rebellious phase of adolescence, seems doomed to make the same mistakes as her mother. Quiet Matilda, on the other hand, seeks refuge in her animals and her schoolwork. "Jesus, don't you hate the world, Matilda?" Beatrice asks her youngest daughter. The title of the film is also the subject of Matilda's science project at school and serves as a metaphor for the way life affects each of us differently -- how some are able to find opportunity in adversity and thrive and how some succumb when ... Written by Mark Fleetwood <>

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Mother of the Year. See more »




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Release Date:

30 May 1973 (France)  »

Also Known As:

A Influência dos Raios Gama no Comportamento das Margaridas  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Certain dialog from Paul Zindel's play remained in the script for the movie. Even though the movie was filmed in Bridgeport, Connecticut, certain references to the location of the play, which takes place in Staten Island, New York (Zindel's hometown) remain. Ruth mentions "Prince's Bay" when reading a classified ad about some property for sale, and Matilda tells her mother that a photographer is going to take pictures of the Science Fair finalists for "The Advance". Prince's Bay is a neighborhood located on the South Shore of Staten Island, and the Staten Island Advance is the local newspaper. See more »


Matilda: No Mama, I don't hate the world.
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User Reviews

The Movie was before its time...Paul Newman was a very nice and open man...and by the way...I'm in the movie too!
29 September 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I was a student at Read Middle School and a very influential woman had come into my life in the name of Mrs. Jettie Tisdale (R.I.P.) of an upcoming movie being filmed in Bridgeport and I was destined to feel those lights on me! I remember not only meeting Mr. Paul Newman, his lovely wife Joanne Woodward but was given the "task" of accompanying and acquainting their daughter Nell Potts with the area setup, the logistics of Harding High School as well as taking my meals and studies with her. She was a regular girl and didn't act "different" or "funny" and seemed to like me as well. I found her parents to be likable and kind and it was a privilege to have met Mr. Paul Newman personally. He was and will remain to be a charitable and sensitive man. I'm in the auditorium scene...I swear I was mesmerized when Ms. Woodward-Newman burst into the auditorium... a great opportunity for a regular kid from Bridgeport! That was my first film! From 8th grade to age 48 years old when I received a second opportunity to be in a film "6 NIGG*! In A Cadillac" filmed in my then hometown of Middletown...I play the impound officer! Regrets on the passing of Mr. Paul Newman and I thank you for your personal encouragement. Sincerely

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