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The Prodigal (1983)

 -  Drama  -  January 1984 (USA)
6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 65 users  
Reviews: 5 user | 2 critic

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Title: The Prodigal (1983)

The Prodigal (1983) on IMDb 6.7/10

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Greg Stuart
...
Anne Stuart
...
Elton Stuart
...
Sheila Holt-Browning
...
Riley Wyndham
Joey Travolta ...
Tony
...
Scott Stuart
...
Laura
Gerry Gibson ...
Reverend Wharton
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Lee C. Adams III ...
Ollie
Bob Ashmun ...
Jack Hilgard
Cliff Barrows ...
Himself
Johanna Beecham ...
Young Mother
...
Alex Thornhill
Johanna Bjork Briem ...
Ursula
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Taglines:

He walked away from his family...their lifestyle...their God. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

PG
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Release Date:

January 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Prodigal  »

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(Metrocolor)
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Soundtracks

Where Nowhere Is
Written by Dennis Spiegel and Bruce Broughton
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User Reviews

 
James F. Collier's The Prodigal
14 June 2002 | by (North Dakota) – See all my reviews

Taking place in the northwest United States, the story concerns a

family in crisis awaiting a Billy Graham crusade. John Hammond

is Greg Stuart, a pot smoking fisherman who decides to take a job

as a tennis pro at a country club. He gets along unwell with his

parents, Hope Lange and John Cullum, who have problems of

their own. Cullum is an insurance company executive who is

working himself into an early grave, and ignoring his frustrated

wife. Lange, looking for some kind of affection, begins flirting with

Ian Bannen, a local author. Arliss Howard, in one of his first films,

is Hammond's brother. A seminarian who lives in a bad part of

town, the rest of his family makes light of Howard's apparently

showy poor living. He and his girlfriend begin empowering their

fellow tenants, which gives the violent property owner reason for

concern.

Hammond takes up with Morgan Brittany, a spoiled rich girl who

plans to market Hammond as a major tennis pro. Hammond soon

gets involved in a drug deal with former fishing buddy Joey

Travolta, and is injured. Brittany leaves, and Hammond is alone.

These four all attend a crusade by Billy Graham, and the three

men stand together and meet during the altar call. Hammond, in

the final scene, returns home to his parents.

Despite the subject matter and Graham's involvement, this is by

no means a wishy washy preachy film. Graham's few scenes are

wonderful, and he speaks more truth in his statements than

others do in their lifetime. His analogy about the ant hill serves to

answer those who wonder why God is not a part of some lives.

I do wish the writer/director had closed out the various stories he

had going. What about the tenants? Did Cullum leave his job? Did

Lange begin writing? These are especially noteworthy in that the

viewer comes to be very involved in these people's lives. The early

1980's filming looks a little dated, although there are some shots

of the ocean that are breathtaking.

The most jarring aspect of "The Prodigal" is its unapologetic talk of

Jesus Christ. Considering the subject matter of motion pictures

today, it is shocking to hear the lost give their lives to Jesus Christ

and not be embarassed about it, or get shouted down by idolizers

or tree worshippers.

While not a perfect film, "The Prodigal" is very good, and does its

job very well. I definitely recommend it.

This is rated (PG) for some physical violence, drug abuse, some

drug references, and some adult situations.


7 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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