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On Golden Pond (1981)

PG | | Drama | 12 February 1982 (USA)
1:47 | Trailer

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Norman is a curmudgeon with an estranged relationship with his daughter Chelsea. At Golden Pond, he and his wife nevertheless agree to care for Billy, the son of Chelsea's new boyfriend, and a most unexpected relationship blooms.



(screenplay), (based on his play)
Won 3 Oscars. Another 11 wins & 23 nominations. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
William Lanteau ...
Christopher Rydell ...
Sumner Todd (as Chris Rydell)


The loons are back again on Golden Pond and so are Norman Thayer, a retired professor, and Ethel who have had a summer cottage there since early in their marriage. This summer their daughter Chelsea -- whom they haven't seen for years -- feels she must be there for Norman's birthday. She and her fiance are on their way to Europe the next day but will be back in a couple of weeks to pick up the fiance's son. When she returns Chelsea is married and her stepson has the relationship with her father that she always wanted. Will father and daughter be able to communicate at last? Written by Dale O'Connor <daleoc@interaccess.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis






PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

12 February 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Am goldenen See  »

Box Office


$119,285,432 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The only ever film [to date, June 2015] in which a film's two top-billed lead actors playing a married couple won a Best Actor and Actress Academy Award each, they being Henry Fonda and Katharine Hepburn respectively. See more »


When then mailman comes earlier in the movie, the screen door is broke; but a few scenes later you can see when the door is open it goes back to the closed position. Later on it is broken again. See more »


Charlie Martin: How old will you be? On your birthday?
Norman: A hundred and three.
Charlie Martin: Ms. Appley had a birthday. She turned 97.
Ethel: Do you hear that Norman? Ninety-seven!
Norman: [referring to the fact that Ms. Appley was a lesbian] There's something to be said for a deviant lifestyle!
See more »


Featured in Katharine Hepburn: All About Me (1993) See more »


Happy Birthday to You
(1893) (uncredited)
Written by Mildred J. Hill and Patty S. Hill
Sung by all for Norman's birthday
See more »

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User Reviews

Great movie - could have done without Jane
22 July 2003 | by (California) – See all my reviews

Watch it last night, having seen it once years ago. This is a great movie about relationships, and dying, but in a comical way.

I really liked Henry Fonda ("good...GOD!") the best, and the movie really focussed on him. Katharine Hepburn was good, too (duh, they both got Oscars), but I found Jane Fonda was a downer. I understand real-life flowing into the characters and all that, but a) she was depressed, or depressing, take your pick b) she was on display during her bikini scenes (you could tell she was posing) and c) can hair get any bigger? (well, it was the 80's).

If you like guns and car chases, this is not the movie for you. If you like thoughtful dialogue, some swearing by young and old, and some interesting things to think about, then you probably will like it.

16 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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