6.3/10
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13 user 12 critic

The Bostonians (1984)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 5 October 1984 (UK)
A Boston feminist and a conservative Southern lawyer contend for the heart and mind of a beautiful and bright girl unsure of her future.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 5 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Madeleine Potter ...
...
Mrs. Burrage
...
Dr. Tarrant
Barbara Bryne ...
...
Dr. Prance
Charles McCaughan ...
Music Hall Policeman
Nancy New ...
Adeline
...
Henry Burrage (as John Van Ness Philip)
...
Mr. Pardon
Peter Bogyo ...
Mr. Gracie
Martha Farrar ...
Mrs, Farrinder
Dusty Maxwell ...
Newton Tarrant
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Storyline

19th-century Boston woman dedicated to the suffrage movement, meets a faith healer's daughter, a Mississippi lawyer also has eyes for the young woman. Written by Joyce Kavitsky <Kavitsky@erols.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A BEAUTIFUL FILM . . . An intimate and exquisite probe of the feminist heart. [Australia Theatrical]

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

5 October 1984 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

A bostoniak  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Actor Christopher Reeve lived on his much cherished own sail-boat "Chandelle" during a substantial amount of the principal photography period. See more »

Goofs

The invitation Basil receives to hear Verena give an address is for Wednesday, June 1, 1876. In 1876, June 1 fell on a Thursday. See more »

Quotes

Miss Birdseye: [on Basil] Your cousin looks like a genius, my dear.
Olive Chancellor: It's only a distant cousin. He's a lawyer from Mississippi, he left his mother and his sisters behind and he's come to try to make his living in New York. He's not in sympathy, I'm afraid.
Miss Birdseye: Well, I've often found that people are only waiting for the light.
See more »

Connections

Featured in From the Journals of Jean Seberg (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Merchant/Ivory offering falls flat
30 October 2007 | by (Minneapolis, MN) – See all my reviews

Well meant production from the magical Merchant/Ivory/Jhabvala team. This one was made before they hit their stride, however. The first mistake was casting Christopher Reeve in the lead. He always looks like he's acting, there's nothing natural about it. His performance here is in par with cheap 70's pornography acting. He is supposedly classically trained as an actor, but I guess anyone who pays for and attends acting classes can say the same. Some have it and some don't, he doesn't. The costumes, art direction and sets are all lavish and appealing. The dialog is far too updated to make one believe that it's taking place in another century, it's almost like a high school production in that aspect. Redgrave and Marchand both give good performances, nothing remarkable at all, but acceptable. The rest of the cast is a mish-mash of mostly b-listers. Scriptwriter Jhabvala has proved herself time and again to be quite the artist, but the script here is flat. Perhaps the book it was based on is this dull and unconvincing. I was left simply unaffected by any message they were trying to convey about the period. I'm a fanatic when it comes to Merchant/Ivory pictures, but this one just didn't cut it. It seems they were more in their element with their amazing and opulent European productions. The quality of their American films seems to be quite cheap in production in comparison. I'm simply left wondering what a masterpiece this could have been had it been set in and filmed in England. If you're an Ivory/Merchant fan, stick with their better titles "A Room With A View" & "Sense And Sensibility", they both surpass this effort by leagues.


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