8.1/10
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23 user 4 critic

The Gathering (1977)

Not Rated | | Drama | TV Movie 4 December 1977
Dying father pulls his torn family together for a last Christmas.

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Won 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Adam
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Kate
Rebecca Balding ...
Julie
Sarah Cunningham ...
Clara
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George
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Helen
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Bud Jr.
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Bob Block
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Tom
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Dr. Hodges
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Peggy
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Roger
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Toni
Maureen Readinger ...
Tiffany
Ronald Readinger ...
Joey
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Storyline

Weeks before Christmas, bitter executive Adam Thornton learns that he only has a short time to live. Having abandoned his wife and four children years earlier, Adam confides in his former wife, who encourages him to bring the family together one last time and apologize for his actions. Without telling his children about his terminal illness, Adam worries how they will respond to his sudden request for forgiveness. Written by Jwelch5742

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Emmy Award Winner - Best Dramatic Special [Video Australia]

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated
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Details

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Release Date:

4 December 1977 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La Grande réunion  »

Filming Locations:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Aspect Ratio:

4:3
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although they were portraying father and son Ed Asner was only 10 years older than Lawrence Pressman. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Adam Thornton: God's teeth!
Dr. John Hodges: You never were much of a cusser.
See more »

Connections

Followed by The Gathering, Part II (1979) See more »

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User Reviews

A lost gem, that should be on DVD.
3 December 2005 | by (Seattle, WA) – See all my reviews

Edward Asner and Maureen Stapleton, are at the top of their form in this small, made-for-TV movie from 1977. The supporting cast are all familiar faces and flesh out the story perfectly.

This film won an Emmy for best special in drama or comedy at the '78 Emmy Awards. The movie has almost a documentary feel to it. The film never sinks under a weight of sentimentality but the emotions are there, just under the surface. You get the feeling that here is a man who loved his family but always thought there would be time to enjoy them, but learns he has weeks to live and this will be his last Christmas.

Desperate to try to rekindle some feelings of love with his four adult children, he turns to his estranged wife and together they try to organize a Christmas reunion but without letting them know their father has a fatal illness.

The children all busy with their own lives in other cities and in one case, another country, struggle with their own emotions about coming back home. This is one of my all time favorite Holiday offerings and my VHS copy is from a broadcast from the 1980's, but the quality is holding up pretty well for all this time. If you can find a copy or see it listed for broadcast, be sure to not miss it.


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