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Promise (1986)

TV Movie  |   |  Drama, Family  |  21 December 1986 (USA)
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When his mother dies, Bob not only inherits her house, but also the custody of his younger brother, who suffers from schizophrenia and epilepsy. At the age of 21, Bob promised to look after... See full summary »



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Title: Promise (TV Movie 1986)

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Won 2 Golden Globes. Another 5 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Bob Beuhler
Annie Gilbert
Michael Alldredge ...
Dr. Pressman
Mary Marsh ...
Mrs. Post
Joan (as Barbara Alexander)
Steven M. Gagnon ...
Raissa Fleming ...
Art Burke ...
Dr. Wexler
Bob Griggs ...
Janet Baumhover ...
Mrs. Green
Charles Bernard ...
Mr. Allison
Claretta Mariana ...


When his mother dies, Bob not only inherits her house, but also the custody of his younger brother, who suffers from schizophrenia and epilepsy. At the age of 21, Bob promised to look after his brother. Although he has barely seen him in the many years since then and strives against the commitment, he doesn't dare to put him in a home either. Written by Tom Zoerner <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Family





Release Date:

21 December 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hallmark Hall of Fame: Promise (#36.1)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Referenced in Z Channel: A Magnificent Obsession (2004) See more »

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User Reviews

Beyond Beautiful!
11 February 2015 | by (India) – See all my reviews

'Promise' is a heartbreaking, tear-jerker that touches the core of your heart. I was emotional & moved by this Emmy-Award-Winning Gem. Its a special film, about us & our emotions.

'Promise' Synopsis: When his mother dies, estranged son Bob (James Garner) inherits her estate, and, surprisingly, custody of his younger brother D.J. (James Woods), who suffers from schizophrenia. Bob is initially reluctant at his new responsibility, but remembers that he had promised his mother to look after his brother.

'Promise' is about family, love, care & above-all, loyalty. The tale of the two brother unfolds with high emotion & impeccable intensity. I was moved to tears, especially in the penultimate portions. This is a film that needs to be watched by everyone, who has a family.

Richard Friedenberg's Screenplay, which won an Emmy, is beautiful. Glenn Jordan's Direction is skilled. Kudos to Jordan for churning out such a touching film. Gayne Rescher's Cinematography is picture-perfect. Editing is rightly done, as well.

Performance-Wise: James Woods is brilliant in his Emmy-Award Winning performance. As D.J, Woods delivers a performance that's purely sympathetic & believable. The Late/Great James Garner, however, steals the show. As Bob, Garner pitches in an astonishing performance, that expresses humanity, with precision. Piper Laurie, in an also Emmy-Award Winning performance, is another topper. As Annie, Laurie embodies her part & is wonderful all through.

On the whole, If your have a family, Watch 'Promise'. This is a film with a big heart!

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