Norma Rae (1979)

PG  |   |  Drama  |  2 March 1979 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 7,192 users  
Reviews: 45 user | 31 critic

A young single mother and textile worker agrees to help unionize her mill despite the problems and dangers involved.



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Won 2 Oscars. Another 10 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Barbara Baxley ...
Bonnie Mae
Wayne Billings
Robert Broyles ...
Sam Bolen
John Calvin ...
Ellis Harper
Booth Colman ...
Dr. Watson
Lujan (as Lee DeBroux)
James Luisi ...
George Benson
Vernon Weddle ...
Reverend Hubbard
Gilbert Green ...
Al Landon
Lucius White


Norma Rae is a southern textile worker employed in a factory with intolerable working conditions. This concern about the situation gives her the gumption to be the key associate to a visiting labor union organizer. Together, they undertake the difficult, and possibly dangerous, struggle to unionize her factory. Written by Kenneth Chisholm <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


If you haven't seen Norma Rae then you're missing... See more »




PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

2 March 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Norma Rae - Eine Frau steht ihren Mann  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


SEK 1,617,267 (Sweden)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (TCM print)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Norma Rae's married name, Webster, means "weaver of cloth." See more »


When Beau Bridges and Sally Fields characters are on their first date Beau's hair is parted in the middle. When they leave the bar with the union guy Beau's hair is parted on the far right. It never appears that way again. See more »


Norma Rae: Norma Rae
[on walking out of Reuben's residence]
Norma Rae: "K'vetch, k'vetch, k'vetch."
See more »


Spoofed in SCTV: My Factory, My Self (1980) See more »


It Goes Like It Goes
Music by David Shire
Lyrics by Norman Gimbel
Sung by Jennifer Warnes
Courtesy Arista Records
See more »

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User Reviews

The leading role is especially nice because its about a woman. The movie is based on a true story.
11 November 1999 | by (US) – See all my reviews

"Norma Rae" Sally Fields (Gidget, The Flying Nun, Forest Gump) is a woman who worked at the O.P.H. Hentley Textile Mill. The role is especially nice because it is a true story about a woman who took a stand against her employers who violated labor law regulations. The manufacturers were so flagrant in their violations that Norma Rae's father had arm pain, and asked for a break. He was made to wait. Actually the pain in the arm was a heart attack that killed him. Sad! The noise in the factory was so bad that everybody had to yell and wear ear protection. I am so glad I don't have to work in such a noisy place. I would lose my mind. I find that silence inspires me! Norma Rae joined the union and got the company to unionize by challenging the audience to fight for what they believe it is right. She did such a wonderful job that it won her an Oscar. Norma Rae was a single parent who marries Beau Bridges (The Fabulous Baker Boys). "Ruben", Ron Leibman (Night Falls on Manhattan, Friends) the man behind the organization of the unionization of the mill, and Norma had a great relationship in the movie. She appeared to be falling for him, as she stated:" he is in my head." But nothing really happened between the two of them besides the hard work of the unionization of the mill. The story is a very good and believable. I watched the movie when it came out and watched it again on television a couple of days ago. Her employers made her pay dearly for her standing for what she believes in. I identify with the character very much. I have been in similar situations many times, not because I am a whistle blower but because I tend to be altruistic. The music is great and also won an Oscar. I recommend this movie! Favorite Scenes: Norma skinny dipping with Ruben. Norma telling her kids about her past. Norma holding up the sign: Union, and all the employees turning their machines off one by one. That is fabulous! Made me cheer! When Ruben forces the employer to put signs which states the rights of the employees at the eye level so that workers could read them.

Favorite quotes: Ruben: " If you were in the State Department we would be in a war." "Somewhere between law and charity flows a shadow." When Norma says good bye to Ruben, she blurts out ": I think you like me!" Maybe Sally was quoting the movie when she received her Oscar and said ": I think you like me. You really, really like me!"

8 of 10 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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300+ voted against it. Why?? happy_accidents
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Ending- Sonny vs. Reuben jwllover4080
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