IMDb > Mrs. Soffel (1984)
Mrs. Soffel
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Mrs. Soffel (1984) More at IMDbPro »

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Release Date:
26 December 1984 (USA) See more »
A true story
Peter Soffel is the stuffy warden of a remote American prison around the turn of the century. His wife... See more » | Add synopsis »
Nominated for Golden Globe. Another 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Ignored, overlooked, forgotten. And why? See more (24 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Diane Keaton ... Kate Soffel

Mel Gibson ... Ed Biddle

Matthew Modine ... Jack Biddle

Edward Herrmann ... Warden Peter Soffel

Trini Alvarado ... Irene Soffel

Jennifer Dundas ... Margaret Soffel (as Jennie Dundas)
Danny Corkill ... Eddie Soffel
Harley Cross ... Clarence Soffel

Terry O'Quinn ... Detective Buck McGovern
Pippa Pearthree ... Maggie
William Youmans ... Guard George Koslow

Maury Chaykin ... Guard Charlie Reynolds
Joyce Ebert ... Matron Agnes Garvey

Wayne Robson ... Halliday
Dana Wheeler-Nicholson ... Jessie Bodyne
Les Rubie ... Mr. Stevenson
Paula Trueman ... Mrs. Stevenson
Nancy Chesney ... Mrs. Fitzgerald
Samantha Follows ... Becky Knotts
Katie McCombs ... Rachel Garvey
Linda Gabler ... Leota Yoeders
Eric Hebert ... Paperboy
Tom Harvey ... Attorney Burke
Jack Jessop ... Attorney Watson
William Duell ... Lenny
John Dee ... Old Prisoner
J. Winston Carroll ... Guard McGarey (as John W. Carroll)
David Fox ... McNeil
Fred Booker ... Trustee
Valerie Buhagiar ... Alice
Norma Dell'Agnese ... Woman Reporter
Al Koslik ... Reporter (as Al Kozlik)
Phillip Craig ... Reporter
Frank Adamson ... Swinehart
Don Granberry ... Roach

Linda Carola ... Factory Girl
George Belskey ... Mr. Bodyne
Maruska Stankova ... Mrs. Bodyne (as Marushka Stankova)
James Bradford ... Minister
Charles Jolliffe ... Sheriff Hoon
Rodger Barton ... Deputy Hoon
Jack Mather ... Mr. Watson
Lee-Max Walton ... Harry
Sean Sullivan ... Farmer
Warren Van Evera ... Farmer
Walter Massey ... District Attorney
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jane Foster ... Elsie
David Barckhoff ... Boy on sidewalk (uncredited)
Chris Cummings ... Boy (uncredited)

Len Doncheff ... Polish Guard (uncredited)
Clay Follett ... Farmer (uncredited)

Heather Graham ... Factory Girl (uncredited)
Kay Hawtrey ... Peter's Secretary (uncredited)
David Huckvale ... Russian Twin (uncredited)
Douglas Huckvale ... Russian Twin (uncredited)

John Innes ... Reporter (uncredited)
Derek Keurvorst ... Reporter (uncredited)

Dan Lett ... Young Man (uncredited)
Don McManus ... Reporter (uncredited)

Alan C. Peterson ... Guard (uncredited)
Dorothy Phelan ... Old Aunt (uncredited)
Lou Pitoscia ... Prisoner (uncredited)
Joe Shelby ... Lawyer (uncredited)
Gerry Tucker ... Policeman (uncredited)
Victoria Vanderkloot ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Chuck Waters ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Brian Young ... McNeil's Secretary (uncredited)
Ralph Zeldin ... Russian (uncredited)
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Directed by
Gillian Armstrong 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Ron Nyswaner 

Produced by
Dennis E. Jones .... associate producer (as Dennis Jones)
David Nicksay .... producer (as David A. Nicksay)
Scott Rudin .... producer
Edgar J. Scherick .... producer
Original Music by
Mark Isham 
Cinematography by
Russell Boyd 
Film Editing by
Nicholas Beauman 
Casting by
Margery Simkin 
Production Design by
Luciana Arrighi 
Art Direction by
Roy Forge Smith 
Set Decoration by
Dan Conley 
Hilton Rosemarin 
Costume Design by
Shay Cunliffe 
Makeup Department
Linda Gill .... makeup artist
Patricia Green .... makeup supervisor
Paul LeBlanc .... hair stylist
Production Management
Monty Diamond .... unit production manager: Pittsburgh
Dennis E. Jones .... production manager (as Dennis Jones)
Michael MacDonald .... unit manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Ronald M. Bozman .... first assistant director: Pittsburgh (as Ron Bozman)
Ronald M. Bozman .... second unit director (as Ron Bozman)
Mark Egerton .... assistant director
Richard Flower .... second assistant director
Rocco Gismondi .... third assistant director
Tony Gittelson .... second assistant director: Pittsburgh (as Anthony H. Gittelson)
Glenn Randall Jr. .... second unit director (as Glenn H. Randall Jr.)
Art Department
Daniel R. Bradette .... assistant property master
Jacques M. Bradette .... supervising set decorator (as Jacques Bradette)
J. Tracy Budd .... property master
Carmi Gallo .... assistant art director
Bill Harman .... construction coordinator
Andris Hausmanis .... assistant art director
Edward Pisoni .... art director: Pittsburgh
Sound Department
George H. Anderson .... sound effects editor (as George Anderson)
Dody Dorn .... dialogue editor (as Dody Jane Dorn)
Dennis Drummond .... sound effects editor
Robert Grieve .... supervising sound editor (as Bob Grieve)
Jay M. Harding .... sound re-recording mixer
David J. Kimball .... sound re-recording mixer
David Lee .... production sound mixer
Ray O'Reilly .... sound re-recording mixer
Andrew Patterson .... dialogue loop editor
Steve Switzer .... boom operator
Christian T. Cooke .... foley mixer (uncredited)
Terry Cooke .... temp mix re-recording mixer (uncredited)
Ken Dufva .... foley artist (uncredited)
Reid Paul Martin .... assistant sound editor (uncredited)
Don White .... adr recording mixer (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Kevin Pike .... special effects supervisor: Pittsburgh
Neil Trifunovich .... special effects coordinator
Jacques Godbout .... special effects technician (uncredited)
Marco Bianco .... stunts
Robin Grathwol .... stunts
Glenn Randall Jr. .... stunt coordinator (as Glenn H. Randall Jr.)
Bruce Smith .... stunts
Victoria Vanderkloot .... stunts
Chuck Waters .... stunts
Pete White .... stunt performer (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
George Berrios .... first assistant camera: Pittsburgh
Holly Bower .... still photographer
Ralph Brandofino .... second assistant camera: Pittsburgh
Darwin Dean .... director of photography: Pittsburgh
Tony Eldridge .... second electrician
Henri Fiks .... second camera operator
Ron Gillham .... key grip
Glen Goodchild .... second grip
Chris Harris .... second assistant camera
Gail Harvey .... still photographer
Chris Helcermanas-Benge .... still photographer
Chris Holmes .... chief lighting technician
John McCallum .... first assistant camera (as Sandy McCallum)
Peter Norman .... director of photography: Pittsburgh
Rod Parkhurst .... camera operator
Robert Saad .... second camera operator
Stuart Stein .... second assistant camera: Pittsburgh
Casting Department
Stuart Aikins .... casting: Toronto
Allan Amtzis .... casting assistant
Lynne Carrow .... additional casting
Brenda McConnell .... casting assistant
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Linda Kemp .... wardrobe mistress (as Lynda Kemp)
Arthur Rowsell .... costumer: men
Patti Unger .... costumer: women (as Patty Unger)
Editorial Department
Bob Kaiser .... color timer
Bruce Lange .... first assistant editor
John Pleffer .... post-production coordinator
Michael Rea .... second assistant editor
Music Department
Mark Adler .... music arranger: string arrangements
Todd Boekelheide .... music supervisor
Gary Clayton .... music recordist
Transportation Department
Nick Sweetman .... transportation coordinator
Other crew
Todd Arnow .... location auditor
Michael Barnathan .... assistant: Mr. Scherick
Marc Dassas .... location manager
Nora Dunfee .... dialect consultant
Alice Ferrier .... production coordinator: Canada
Cassie Freckleton .... location auditor
Penelope Hynam .... script supervisor
Patricia Johnson .... unit publicist
Lisa McClelland .... production coordinator: Pittsburgh
Peggy Munns .... assistant: Ms. Armstrong
Rick Parker .... wrangler
Janice Polley .... assistant: Mr. Nicksay
Stephen Seliy .... location manager: Pittsburgh (as Steve Seliy)
Adam J. Shully .... assistant location manager
Ed Urban .... technical advisor (as Lt. Ed Urban)
Casey Brown .... production assistant (uncredited)
Linda Callow .... stand-in: Diane Keaton (uncredited)
Lev Mailer .... adr voice (uncredited)
Dan Roth .... adr voice (uncredited)
Sandy Webb .... legal (uncredited)
Crew believed to be complete

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Additional Details

Also Known As:
110 min | 112 min
Color (Metrocolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Ken Wahl was to meet with Diane Keaton about taking the role of Ed Biddle. But on his way to the meeting, Wahl crashed his motorcycle and suffered a head injury that required 89 stitches.See more »
Anachronisms: A toy electric train shown running around a Christmas tree is of a post-1950 design, as is the track. The train is based on 19th-century locomotive and passenger car prototypes, making it more plausible. However, toy electric trains that even remotely resembled the one shown did not exist by 1901.See more »
Movie Connections:


What famous New Age composer wrote the score for Mrs.Soffel?
See more »
13 out of 15 people found the following review useful.
Ignored, overlooked, forgotten. And why?, 26 June 2006
Author: ecjones1951 from United States

"Mrs. Soffel" is a wonderful movie I have seen many times, but the last viewing was so many years ago I'm watching it right now on TCM.

I'm a sucker for movies whose main characters suddenly, inexplicably make a decision which goes against everything they seem to embody, or at least that which the viewer has come to know about them. That Kate Soffel's story is a true one makes it all the more intriguing.

In early 20th-century America, the lot of a wife, even that of a well-to-do-man and mother to lovely children, was a lonely, empty, barren existence. In a wealthy household with servants, there was very little meaningful work for the mistress of the house to do every day.

Even the layers upon layers of clothes Victorian women wore served no practical purpose except to restrict movement and render their wearers merely decorative. Express your opinions and you got packed off to visit relatives in hopes that maybe the change of scenery would "do you good." There were millions of avenues for creative expression and enterprise that were simply cut off for women.

Good minds went to waste. Souls shriveled and died.

Kate Soffel (Diane Keaton) was the wife of a prison warden in Pittsburgh at the turn of the last century. She served as something of a missionary to the prisoners, giving them Bibles, holding prayer readings with them and hoping to guide them towards remorse and redemption. She never expects to fall in love with one of the inmates. But fall she does, for the charming Ed Biddle (Mel Gibson), who along with his brother Jack, (Matthew Modine) are in jail on murder charges.

Kate is suffocating; the Biddles are desperate. Prone to fits of melancholy and depression, plagued with fears that she is not a good mother and that she has failed her husband -- whom she has come to learn she really doesn't know very well -- Kate, like so many women of her era, is desperate for something to end the tedium, the frustration, the despair. She is a perfect candidate for the dangerous voyage she helps plan and sets out on with the Biddle brothers.

"Mrs. Soffel" raises many ethical and moral issues, among them the divergent path Kate takes from her religious teachings, and the Biddle brothers' guilt or innocence. It can be appreciated equally on one or more levels, but it remains a remarkably restrained depiction of emotions and passion that are anything but.

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