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Summer Wishes, Winter Dreams (1973)

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Rita, a middle aged New York City homemaker, finds herself in an emotional crisis which forces her to re-examine her life, as well as her relationships with her mother, her eye doctor ... See full summary »



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Title: Summer Wishes, Winter Dreams (1973)

Summer Wishes, Winter Dreams (1973) on IMDb 6.5/10

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 5 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Harry Walden
Betty Goody
Dori Brenner ...
Ron Richards ...
Bobby Walden
Win Forman ...
Fred Goody
Peter Marklin ...
Nancy Andrews ...
Mrs. Hungerford
Minerva Pious ...
Woman in Theatre
Sol Frieder ...
Man in Theatre
Helen Ludlam ...
Grant Code ...
Gaetano Lisi ...
Student in Theatre
Lee Jackson ...


Rita, a middle aged New York City homemaker, finds herself in an emotional crisis which forces her to re-examine her life, as well as her relationships with her mother, her eye doctor husband, her alienated daughter and estranged son. Written by Eugene Kim <>

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PG | See all certifications »





Release Date:

9 September 1974 (Sweden)  »

Also Known As:

Summer Wishes, Winter Dreams  »

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Features Wild Strawberries (1957) See more »

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User Reviews

Rita, the snow queen
3 November 2001 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

Rita, the "snow queen" is another of Joanne Woodward's aging spinster virgin frumps, that she seemed to specialise in the early 1970's. Depressed and discontent, her mental state is symbolised by the nightmare plane crash that director Gilbert Cates opens the film with. Writer Stewart Stern - who also wrote Rachel, Rachel - loads on the psycho-baggage. She has a demanding mother (Sylvia Sydney), a fat daughter (Doris Brenner), a gay son, and has married a man she did not love (Martin Balsam). All this would be unbearable with anyone but Woodward playing the role since she lightens it with her natural intelligence and sly sense of humour. It's amusing to see Balsam and Woodward argue in their middle-class educated way, though Rita's wearing a mink clues you that she isn't about to scream abuse. Balsam's subtlety, in particular makes you regret his few screen appearances. The only character that isn't redeemed by the acting is that of the gay son, since he is a cypher, and Cates presents his coming out in a homophobic black-and-white expressionistic sequence. Cates is fond of these kind of theatrical flourishes. There is a death at a screening of Wild Strawberries, a spirited chase at a former European battlefield, a family bickering at a graveyard, and Rita has a breakdown in a crowded London subway, which is probably the most believable of them all. Johnny Mandel provides a lovely theme, in his understated way, and then embarasses himself with trumpets in the battlefield sequence.

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