A Piano for Mrs. Cimino (1982)

TV Movie  |   |  Drama  |  3 February 1982 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.8/10 from 459 users  
Reviews: 5 user

An elderly widow must find meaning and activity in her life when her son suggests she is no longer capable of handling her own affairs.



, (book)
0Check in
Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 2 wins. See more awards »


Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Family Reunion (TV Movie 1981)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

Elizabeth Winfield is a retired teacher and matriarch of a problematic family who desperately tries to keep her family together, after many years they separated from each other. While she's... See full summary »

Director: Fielder Cook
Stars: Bette Davis, J. Ashley Hyman, David Huddleston
Comedy | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Three sons who work in the family construction business help their overbearing mother celebrate her anniversary to her late husband.

Director: Roy Ward Baker
Stars: Bette Davis, Sheila Hancock, Jack Hedley
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

The story deals with Gloria Vanderbilt's difficult coming-of-age when, at eleven, she was a pawn in a custody battle between her sybaritic mother and her aunt.

Director: Waris Hussein
Stars: Angela Lansbury, Christopher Plummer, Maureen Stapleton
Murder with Mirrors (TV Movie 1985)
Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

When Carrie Louise Serrocold suspects that someone is trying to poison her, she sends for the one person who might be able to help - her old friend Miss Marple.

Director: Dick Lowry
Stars: Helen Hayes, Bette Davis, John Mills
Madame Sin (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A CIA agent is used as a pawn in an insane woman's plan to steal a Polaris submarine.

Director: David Greene
Stars: Bette Davis, Robert Wagner, Denholm Elliott
White Mama (TV Movie 1980)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

A poor, elderly white woman living in a tenement in a black ghetto is befriended by a neighborhood boy, and the two of them form a mutually beneficial relationship: he provides her ... See full summary »

Director: Jackie Cooper
Stars: Bette Davis, Ernest Harden Jr., Eileen Heckart
Right of Way (TV Movie 1983)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

A dying woman and her husband agree to a joint-suicide pact, whether others like it or not.

Director: George Schaefer
Stars: Bette Davis, James Stewart, Melinda Dillon
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9/10 X  

A woman, who had left home 20 years previously under acrimonious circumstances, finds out that she is terminally ill. She returns home and tries to rebuild her relationship with her ... See full summary »

Director: Milton Katselas
Stars: Bette Davis, Gena Rowlands, Ford Rainey
Skyward (TV Movie 1980)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

An aging Bette Davis is a flight instructor at an old Texas airport. When a young girl in a wheelchair finds the airport by watching gliders fly, she decides she wants to learn how to fly. ... See full summary »

Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Bette Davis, Howard Hesseman, Marion Ross
The Disappearance of Aimee (TV Movie 1976)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  

In 1926, famous evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson disappeared for six weeks. When she surfaced, she claimed that she had been kidnapped and held prisoner in Mexico. Others claimed that she ... See full summary »

Director: Anthony Harvey
Stars: Faye Dunaway, Bette Davis, James Sloyan
As Summers Die (TV Movie 1986)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The plot centers around a large area of land owned by an old black lady, Elvira Backus. It had been given to her by her one time employer and secret father of her two children, a southern ... See full summary »

Director: Jean-Claude Tramont
Stars: Scott Glenn, Jamie Lee Curtis, Bette Davis
Scream, Pretty Peggy (TV Movie 1973)
Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A sculptor hires young college girls to take care of his elderly mother and his supposedly insane sister, both of whom live in the old family mansion with him.

Director: Gordon Hessler
Stars: Ted Bessell, Bette Davis, Sian Barbara Allen


Cast overview, first billed only:
Esther McDonald Cimino
Penny Fuller ...
Mrs. Polanski
Philip Ryan
George Cimino
Karen Cimino
Barney Fellman
Paul Roebling ...
Roger Desmond
LeRoy Schulz ...
Harold Cimino
Dr. Mitchell
Nurse Graham
Fran Gebhard ...
Gloria Cimino
Alice Cimino
Social Service Dir.
Antony Holland ...
Judge Schultz


Esther Cimino, a music teacher who has reached retirement age, finds that her mental faculties are slipping somewhat. The film is a trenchant, realistic study of the ravages and displacements, socially, physically, and mentally, that are visited upon a once-proud, sensitive, and still highly intelligent woman who is declared mentally incompetent by her children. She is subjected to a hearing, where her blurred responses prompt the judge to put her in a nursing home, and she begins to deteriorate. However, her granddaughter who loves her rouses her back to life and helps her learn how to live again. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

3 February 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ein Piano für Mrs. Cimino  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A window on potential problems of old age.
26 April 2008 | by (Finger Point, Alaska) – See all my reviews

The story has two story lines: the visual story and the underlying one. It opens as Davis is forcibly removed from her home and taken to a hospital, the result of deep depression after the death of her husband. She hasn't fully recovered when she returns home. Neither of her sons can take her into their home, and make decisions to sell her home, move her into a nursing home and put her music business in the hands of a banker. A grand-daughter is her only ally and searches for an assisted living home that is not institutional. The movie gives thoughtful looks at differences in elder care. One day Davis plays the Rec Hall piano and mentions that her piano was given away. Eventually she moves away from the area into an active retirement hotel in California (I think). At the home's Christmas Party she meets Wynn, the saxophone player she remembers from the days he played in her husband's band. They begin seeing each other and enjoying music. One night a storm prevents her from returning home and she spends the night at Wynn's, who gives her the bed yet sleeps on the couch. Her family is notified of her absence and assumes it is another example of her confusion and unreliability. All her finances are in the hands of others. She begins legal action to resolve the situation, whereupon the people handling her financial interests bring all her miss-steps to light in the most unfavorable light. I've worked with many elder people and find this story is VERY close to the truth. It's an excellent window on elder problems.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Is this true that the photo used was Jack Cullen? ttony_at
Discuss A Piano for Mrs. Cimino (1982) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: