Starting Over (1979)

R  |   |  Comedy, Romance  |  5 October 1979 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 1,594 users  
Reviews: 31 user | 9 critic

A divorced man falls in love, but somehow he can't get over his ex-wife. This affects his love life in comic ways. Based on Dan Wakefield's novel.



(based on the novel by), (screenplay)
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 5 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael (Mickey) Potter
Marva Potter
MacIntyre Dixon ...
Dan Ryan
Larry (as Jay Sanders)
Richard Whiting ...
Alfie Wise ...
Workshop Member
Workshop Member
Sturgis Warner ...
John Morganson
Mary Catherine Wright ...
Student 1 (as Mary C. Wright)


Burt Reynolds is an attractive middle-aged man who suffers a crisis of confidence when ditched by his ambitious singer wife (Candice Bergen), until he begins to forge a new new relationship with an equally insecure teacher (Jill Clayburgh). But when the wife attempts a reconciliation - seduction followed by a truly excruciating song she has composed for him - he realizes where his loyalty lies. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Phil Potter would like to straighten out his life...One way, or the other.


Comedy | Romance


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

5 October 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Auf ein Neues  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


This film was the second movie that Burt Reynolds made with Jill Clayburgh. The first was Semi-Tough (1977). Both movies were made during the 1970s. See more »


During an outdoor grade school carnival, bathing suit-clad Marilyn participates in a dunk tank concession in the dead of a Boston winter. In reality, she would freeze. See more »


Michael Potter: Michael Potter, to crowd observing Phil's anxiety attack, "Anybody have a Valium?" Everyone in crowd reaches into purses and pockets.
See more »


Better Than Ever
Music by Marvin Hamlisch
Lyrics by Carole Bayer Sager
Also sung by Stephanie Mills
Produced by James Mtume (as Mtume) and Reggie Lucas (as Lucas)
See more »

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User Reviews

excellent film, but academy nomination for bergen???
14 March 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

this film is very well done, portraying those very real situations that people find them selves.

first off, in small but very important, vibrant roles, Mary sternhagen, and Charles durning once again prove their worth, their talent, and their ability to MATTER to a story. both of these actors are just fantastic at recognizing their roles, and DELIVERING more than needed. just fantastic.

also look for Austin Pendleton, in a small but vital role playing it to the hilt. he is a spectacular actor who deserves way more credit and recognition then he receives from Hollywood. versatile, fantastic actor. without actors like him, Hollywood would never survive.

as to the two female leads, well, one and a half, as i can't see why Candice bergen would be nominated for an academy award for this limited performance. she is definitely a major part of the story, BUT NOT A MAJOR FORCE ON THE SCREEN. now, Jill clayburgh, on the other hand is so good in her role here, and so believable, that she definitely deserved recognition. she has the character, the personal trauma, the desperation, the fear down pat. bergen, on the other hand, while she does nail the character, is not that memorable at all.

and Burt Reynolds, is is usual magnificent self, giving 110 % to the story, the character, the production.

if you are an aspiring actor, STUDY Burt Reynolds. he is far more than a plastic banana head sex symbol, leading man. he is of the same cloth of classic actors Humphrey Bogart, Clark gable, john Wayne.....he gets the character down, and gives his all.

this film is a keeper, very well done, and keeps your rapt interest in the final outcome, WHICH IS NOT ETCHED IN STONE, by any means. it can go either way.

well produced, well directed, and well acted.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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