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Somewhere in Time (1980)

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A Chicago playwright uses self-hypnosis to find the actress whose vintage portrait hangs in a grand hotel.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (novel)
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4,626 ( 380)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Arthur's Father
...
Genevieve
Audrey Bennett ...
Richard's Date
...
Critic (as W.H. Macy)
Laurence Coven ...
Critic
Susan Bugg ...
Penelope
Christy Michaels ...
Beverly
Ali Marie Matheson ...
Student (as Ali Matheson)
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Storyline

Young writer Richard Collier is met on the opening night of his first play by an old lady who begs him to "Come back to me". Mystified, he tries to find out about her, and learns that she is a famous stage actress from the early 1900s, Elise McKenna. Becoming more and more obsessed with her, he manages, by self hypnosis, to travel back in time where he meets her. They fall in love, a matching that is not appreciated by her manager. Can their love outlast the immense problems caused by their "time" difference? And can Richard remain in a time that is not his? Written by Rhino <rhino@blueyonder.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Beyond fantasy. Beyond obsession. Beyond time itself... he will find her. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy | Romance

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 October 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Bid Time Return  »

Box Office

Budget:

$5,100,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film got made because the Universal Pictures studio owed director Jeannot Szwarc a favor because Jaws 2 (1978) had been the studio's biggest box-office performer of 1978. Somewhere in Time (1980)'s budget was originally set at US $8 million but the studio cut it in half to US $4 million and would only green-light the film with such a reduction due to a belief and resistance by studio executives that the film had limited appeal - the time-travel aspect of the film had no visual effects or time-machine, the picture being made in the genesis of the post Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) special and visual effects boom era. See more »

Goofs

In the book of biographies Richard reads at the library it states that Elise McKenna was born on November 11, 1885. Later on in the film, Robinson states that he's been working with Elise since she was sixteen-years-old in March of 1903. Either she was actually seventeen or she was born in 1886 rather than 1885. So, either Robinson was misremembering or the biographer screwed up/was unable to find accurate documents. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[various snippets in crowd chatter]
Richard Collier: I got some news. There was an agent in the house tonight, and he said he thinks this play might be good enough for Broadway.
[cheers from crowd]
Richard Collier: Fingers crossed, who knows? Come on, let's all have some cake.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Back to 'Somewhere in Time' (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

You Made Me Love You
(uncredited)
Written by James V. Monaco and Joseph McCarthy
Performed by Jane Seymour
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User Reviews

 
The film affirms that love is an undeniable force which goes beyond us...
26 December 2003 | by (Mexico) – See all my reviews

Christopher Reeve takes on the role of (Richard Collier) a successful Chicago playwright who is approached (in May 1972) by a very old woman (Susan French) who will alter the course of his life eternally...

The thoughtful old lady presses a classic pocket watch, from a past existence, into his right hand and intensely whispers four haunting words 'Come back to me,' which will affect him forever...

Eight years have passed and Richard is seeing his work incredibly sterile, gently afflicted with a case of lesser inspiration... So he packs his luggage and heads out to an island of enchanting beauty, to the Grand Hotel on the Straits of Mackinac waterfront...

While waiting for the huge dining hall to open, he tours the grand old building's museum, and sees a portrait of a lovely woman... He becomes obsessed about finding the truth behind the old photograph and begins questioning the people that knew her past... What emerges is a wonderful woman who is the first American stage actress in 1912 to create a mystique in the public's eye... She is the same lady who visited him that night at the premier of one of his plays...

Richard finds himself intrigued... There is so much to hear... People who knew Elise McKenna when she was young said that she was quick and bright and full of fun... Strong, willful, not at all the way she was later...

Seeking help from an old philosophy teacher who had written a book about 'Travels through time,' Richard attempts to disassociate himself entirely from the present, move everything out of sight that could possibly remind him of it, hypnotize his mind, and transport himself backward into the past, into June 27, 1912, into the life of the stunningly beautiful and talented Elise McKenna (Jane Seymour).

Nominated for Best Costume Design, the motion picture is a romantic fantasy that avoids any use of machinery in action... The time travel theory is completely non-scientific... The film captures the idea of a fine young man moving back among other time periods, and affirms that love is an undeniable force which goes beyond us, a force with no limit to the spiritual power, with no end to the potential of spiritual expansion...


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