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Independence Day
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Reviews & Ratings for
Independence Day More at IMDbPro »

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15 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

OK drama with an outstanding performance by Dianne Wiest

Author: Gary M. James from United States
21 January 2006

On the IMDb message board of The Sweet Hereafter, a writer asked users what was the most bone chilling moment in a film. I mentioned the little seen, small town drama Independence Day (a.k.a.: Follow Your Dreams, and not to be confused with the 1996 sci-fi blockbuster). Although Kathleen Quinlan and David Keith were the leads, I thought their somewhat interesting but not very compelling small-town romance was overshadowed by a subplot that could have been a main story in another movie.

As Keith's suicidal and physically-abused sister, Dianne Wiest gave a heartbreaking performance. The dramatic decision she makes that directly affects her abusive husband (Cliff DeYoung, who also does a great job with his despicable character) and indirectly affects the lead characters, definitely chilled my bones.

Weist's performance here was three years before her first of three supporting Oscar nominations, with 2 wins for Hannah and Her Sisters and Bullets Over Broadway.

Although I had mixed feelings for Independence Day, I would recommend checking out the movie for Dianne Wiest's outstanding supporting performance.

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11 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

All around good movie

Author: phantom110 from Oregon
5 July 2001

This movie is pretty darn good. Quinlan does a good job as a woman who grows up in a small town and has big dreams of moving to a big town. The true break-out performances, though, go to Diane Weist and Cliff De Young as the abused wife and abuser. Wait 'till you see how she gets him back! Good movie, watch it when you get a chance.

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8 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

A film about personal choices, ahead of its time.

Author: frank56 ( from Los Angeles, California
30 January 2000

Independence Day unflinchingly looks at lifechoices, and their effects on both those that make them and the people that care about them. The cast is excellent, especially Dianne Wiest at Nancy. I saw this film the year it was released at the Seattle Film Festival and was caught offguard at the depth of emotion portrayed here. A great film that deserves some type of revival, as it provides a message that few would find argument with. Please see this film.

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8 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

Diane Weist steals this movie...

Author: William G. Chapman ( from Washington State, USA
16 January 2003

...with her performance as Cliff De Young's battered wife. When I saw it in the Greenwood Theater in North Seattle the whole audience cheered and clapped when David Keith hauled De Young out of the bar and beat the crap out of him for hitting his sister (Weist) - Weist had grabbed the audience so effectively. The only "Independence Day" anybody remembers today is the flying saucer movie, so this film is nearly forgotten - a tragedy.

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5 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

A wonderful, character-driven little film

Author: niara from New York, NY
25 July 2005

I loved this movie, and I don't say that about a lot of movies. As someone else has noted, it's a shame that when people see the title "Independence Day" they will immediately think to the flying saucer/alien movie. This is not that film. A wonderful story, and truly wonderful performances by Kathleen Quinlin, David Keith and some great character actors: Josef Sommer as the dad, Frances Sternhagen as Quinlin's mom and Dianne Wiest as David Keith's sister. Quietly touches on universal themes of the importance of family and following your dreams, and most harrowing, on domestic violence. I just got on ebay to see if this film was available on DVD and had to wade through screens of the alien title to find that alas, it is not. Only on VHS. What a shame.

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5 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Well worth it if you are in a sentimental mood.

Author: Olov_Liljeborg from Stockholm, Sweden
25 April 2003

This, I suppose, largely forgotten movie just aired on Swedish late-night television. I don't expect many people saw it. I only happened upon it myself. But it managed to catch my interest.

It is a small, unassuming movie. Nothing remarkable, but well-acted and warm at heart. It paints a believable picture of small-town life, not just in America, but in most of the Western world. As I watched it I realized that it could very easily be adapted to Swedish conditions. You would really only need to change the names, and let it take place in the cold north of Sweden, with Stockholm the glowing city in the sun. The same longing for something more, and the same fear of the unknown exists right here. I guess it's universal.

Anyway, the movie is well worth watching. It is far better than its recent over-hyped and under-acted namesake.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Wiest Performance

Author: annietaco09 from United States
6 July 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I haven't seen this movie since it was shown on HBO in the 1980s, but Dianne Wiest's performance is still fresh in my mind. I'd never seen her before. Her performance grabbed me just like Mickey Rourke's in Body Heat---it was like---who IS this person!!! The abuse was so real--I can remember actually flinching and feeling sick. Of course,the climax is unforgettable--I remember this awful feeling of impending doom just knowing something really bad was going to happen. But I was even more impressed with the scene where Kathleen Quinlan is urging the Wiest character to loosen up a little and have a drink with her--they didn't have all the right ingredients for a grasshopper so they kind of improvised. It was so powerful. And Quinlan's character was so clueless and naive about the situation. Such great writing and acting.

I would've loved to have seen Wiest on Broadway with James Earl Jones in Othello. I can only imagine the power of her Desdamona.

Also, for those wondering about the Martina McBride song, "Independence Day", it does seem to really fit this movie, but it wasn't written until the 1990's by Gretchen Peters. It was a controversial song for Martina McBride and was written from the viewpoint of an 8 year old girl observing her mother being abused.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Great movie

Author: alana_ladd from United States
20 December 2006

I read somewhere that you can get this movie on VHS on EBay but I can't find it. Does anyone know where I can get it? It's an excellent movie. Truly excellent

I only saw it once in 1983 and have never forgotten it. My daughter thinks I'm making too much of it but I really want to get this movie and have her watch it. After all these years I remember Dianne Weists, the abused wife, as she gave a great performance. Also the movie shows how abuse is so often hidden or ignored by relatives and other people. Watch this movie if you should get the chance and you like good drama movies.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

I've searched for a very long time for this movie

Author: deefeenie1 from United States
28 August 2006

I saw this movie probably 20 years ago and believe you me, I have never forgotten it. This is a very intense and compelling drama that contains some very serious subject matter, that being spousal abuse of the worst kind. The abused character,(Diane Weist)depicts the sorrowful circumstances of a woman caught-up in a really bad marriage and the way she exacts her revenge is the spellbinding climax of the movie. Having firsthand knowledge of this subject matter I found the movie to be one of the first to depict one of the many ways an abused woman does in the end truly claim independence. I'm very sorry to say that I don't really remember the details of the other characters' story line, but I surely remembered Diane Weist's character. I would certainly enjoy seeing it again.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Good one

Author: freakmagnetm2000 from United States
9 August 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

A very excellent movie,goes deeper than the title implies and brings out a lot of questions as to why things like what happened to Jack's sister,portrayed by Diane Weist,don't happen a lot more often.The problem of spousal abuse,either mental or physical is an ongoing problem.I first saw this movie as a teenager and was impressed,even then by the subject matter.Even though the sister's predicament wasn't the main focus of the movie it has stayed with me for more that twenty years and the scene in which she blows up the house really sticks in my mind and the point where Jack finally realizes that HIS dreams are important and that he must go out and find them is a very powerful moment to me as well.

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