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Return of the Secaucus Seven (1979)

R  |   |  Drama  |  5 September 1980 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 1,612 users  
Reviews: 37 user | 20 critic

Seven former college friends, along with a few new friends, gather for a weekend reunion at a summer house in New Hampshire to reminisce about the good old days, when they got arrested on the way to a protest in Washington, DC.



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Title: Return of the Secaucus Seven (1979)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Bruce MacDonald ...
Mike Donnelly
Maggie Renzi ...
Katie Sipriano
Maggie Cousineau ...
Frances Carlson
Chip Hollister
Jean Passanante ...
Irene Rosenblue
Karen Trott ...
Maura Tolliver
Ron Desjardins
Marisa Smith ...
Amy Schewel ...
Lacey Summers
Carolyn Brooks ...
Eric Forsythe ...
Nancy Mette ...


The Secaucus 7 of the film's title are seven friends who, during their college days, were arrested in New Jersey on their way to a protest in Washington. The film takes place ten years after all that, as the friends gather at the home of Mike and Katie, now schoolteachers in New Hampshire, bringing with them old problems and new: Maura has left Jeff and seeks consolation with his best friend, J.T.; J.T., arguably the least successful of the friends, finally gets the courage to move to Los Angeles to start a career as a songwriter; Irene brings her new boyfriend along, hoping he'll like and be liked by her friends and expecting them to challenge him for his more-conservative politics; and more. This is the film that inspired "The Big Chill." Written by Gary Dickerson <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




R | See all certifications »




Release Date:

5 September 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Return of the Secaucus 7  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$60,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


'A Critical Mass Film House' (CMFH) review stated that John "Sayles had low expectations of having the no-budget film theatrically released and was aspiring to show it on PBS or cable." See more »


Camera shadow on the ground during the basketball game when JT falls down. See more »


[they sit in a row in the bar]
Mike Donnelly: Sunday!
Ron Desjardins: Sunday!
Howie: Sunday!
Mike Donnelly: At Washington Valley Speedway: thrills, chills, and spills!
Ron Desjardins: [starts making racing car noises]
Howie: Nitro-burning funny cars!
Mike Donnelly: Joey Chitwood and his Auto Daredevils!
Howie: Special appearance by Big Daddy Ross!
Mike Donnelly: You'll laugh, you'll scream, you'll cry!
See more »


Referenced in Infested (2002) See more »


I Brake for Animals
© 1979 Sweet Melodies Publishing
Written by Adam LeFevre
Performed by Adam LeFevre (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

A charming movie that I still quote often.
22 March 2002 | by (Ann Arbor) – See all my reviews

This movie is wonderful. I never tire of watching it. The dialog rings true and the actors have a feeling of long friendship that makes this movie truly enjoyable. This movie is head and shoulders above most movies made in the last 20 years. I am not saying this movie is the best movie ever made I am ranking it by how much enjoyment I have garnered from it. Since viewing this movie I have sought out every Sayles movie and never been disappointed.

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

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