MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 4,985 this week

The Bostonians (1984)

 -  Drama | Romance  -  September 1984 (UK)
6.2
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.2/10 from 1,231 users   Metascore: 59/100
Reviews: 12 user | 11 critic | 10 from Metacritic.com

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)
0Check in
0Share...

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb Picks: August

IMDb's editors share the movies and TV shows they recommend for August 2014.


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 17 titles
created 18 May 2013
 
a list of 24 titles
created 8 months ago
 
a list of 60 titles
created 6 months ago
 
list image
a list of 38 titles
created 2 months ago
 
a list of 35 titles
created 2 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "The Bostonians" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Bostonians (1984)

The Bostonians (1984) on IMDb 6.2/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Bostonians.
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Monsignor (1982)
Crime | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  

An ambitious priest seduces a nun and leads the Vatican into shady business during and after World War II.

Director: Frank Perry
Stars: Christopher Reeve, Geneviève Bujold, Fernando Rey
The Guru (1969)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Britain's top pop artiste, Tom Pickle, travels to Bombay, India, circa 1960s to learn to play the sitar (musical instrument) from renowned maestro Ustad Zafar Khan. Tom is taken to Zafar's ... See full summary »

Director: James Ivory
Stars: Rita Tushingham, Michael York, Utpal Dutt
Savages (1972)
Fantasy | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

An allegory about humankind progresses from a savage state to a civilized form, that is only a cover for it's innate barbarism.

Director: James Ivory
Stars: Lewis J. Stadlen, Anne Francine, Thayer David
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

This fictionalized story, based on the family life of writer James Jones, is an emotionless slice-of-life story. Jones here is portrayed as Bill Willis, a former war hero and now successful... See full summary »

Director: James Ivory
Stars: Leelee Sobieski, Kris Kristofferson, Barbara Hershey
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A man marries an heiress for her money even though he is actually in love with her friend.

Director: James Ivory
Stars: Uma Thurman, Jeremy Northam, Kate Beckinsale
Morgan! (1966)
Comedy | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

After his wife leaves him for another man, a London artist begins his descent into madness in trying to win her back.

Director: Karel Reisz
Stars: David Warner, Vanessa Redgrave, Robert Stephens
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The story of a family troupe of English actors in India. They travel around the towns and villages giving performances of Shakespearean plays. Through their travels we see the changing face... See full summary »

Director: James Ivory
Stars: Shashi Kapoor, Felicity Kendal, Geoffrey Kendal
Drama | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

An aging silent movie comic star tries for a comeback by staging a wild party that turns into a sexual free-for-all. The comic ends up killing his mistress and her latest boyfriend.

Director: James Ivory
Stars: James Coco, Raquel Welch, Perry King
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Mary Stuart, who was named Queen of Scotland when she was only six days old, is the last Roman Catholic ruler of Scotland. She is imprisoned at he age of 23 by her cousin Elizabeth Tudor, ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Jarrott
Stars: Vanessa Redgrave, Glenda Jackson, Patrick McGoohan
Morning Glory (1993)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

An ex-convict who is on parole is accused of murdering a loose woman in the town where he works.

Director: Steven Hilliard Stern
Stars: Christopher Reeve, Deborah Raffin, Lloyd Bochner
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

One of the obsessive speculations in American history is whether Thomas Jefferson, in the years before he became president, had an affair with (and fathered a child with) his 15-year-old ... See full summary »

Director: James Ivory
Stars: Nick Nolte, Greta Scacchi, Gwyneth Paltrow
Howards End (1992)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A businessman thwarts his wife's bequest of an estate to another woman.

Director: James Ivory
Stars: Anthony Hopkins, Emma Thompson, Vanessa Redgrave
Edit

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
Edit

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 »
Edit

Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

September 1984 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

A bostoniak  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Film debut of Madeleine Potter. See more »

Goofs

After a title card has advised us we are in New York City in l876, Olive Chancellor writes a check for Mr. Tarrant, dated Septmber 13, 1875. 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

Referenced in Dawson's Creek: The Bostonians (2001) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Abysmal on all counts
6 January 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

With an uncompromising dedication to character, and a flair for graceful, richly-textured storytelling, Merchant-Ivory seemed incapable of mediocrity. And with the recent passing of Ismail Merchant, I've been thumbing through the company's stellar filmography with renewed appreciation. Adoring the costume drama, I donned my comfy slippers and International Coffee and settled into 120 minutes of Merchant-Ivory bliss.

What I got instead was The Bostonians, the MI treatment of Henry James' witty and satirical novel about the earliest days of the feminist movement. This production took a fun and biting social commentary and turned it into gooey melodrama. It failed to show the irony of a headstrong young feminist (daughter of a "mesmeric healer" and a chronic hypochondriac) allowing herself to be manipulated on all sides while falling for a dull, misogynistic Southern lawyer. It turned the classic Plutonic relationship with her feminist mentor into the clawing desperation of an aging lesbian. Script appeal seesawed between eating a mouthful of alum, and blowing butterscotch pudding out one's nose. Editing was at once jagged and lumpy, spending copious amounts of film on innocuous bits of business, only to slam the guillotine so close to some dialog that it made me wonder about my DVD player. And that's only the half of it.

Stiff and lumbering is all I ever expect of the now canonized Christopher Reeve, so this performance shouldn't have surprised me. But it did. Reeve was channeling some kind of Confederate Heathcliff with a little Mary Shelley thrown in for good measure. Reading his lines from crib notes apparently taped to the bottom of the camera lens, he never blinked nor gave the slightest indication of understanding his dialog. He seemed to be forever walking downhill, and was patently incapable of moving his head. On seeing this performance, one could almost believe that the future riding accident might actually improve his flexibility. The heroin, as played by a mush-mouthed Madeleine Potter, showed all the plucky conviction of a plate of cold baked beans (yes, with the little puddles of congealed pork fat floating on top). As for the usually magnificent Vanessa Redgrave (in the desperate aging lesbian role), I say 'let's just forget this ever happened.' The only redeeming performances were two tiny bits sent in by Linda Hunt and Jessica Tandy. I'd be surprised if their scripts totaled more than 150 words. It would seem the director didn't bother to load their bloomers with the 100 lbs of wet oatmeal like he did with everyone else.

In a way, it's a shame I only rented The Bostonians. I'll miss out on the gratification I'd have felt in putting it in the microwave. What a tragic waste of good couch time.


30 of 63 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Anything like the book? bubbly_rootbeer
Discuss The Bostonians (1984) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?