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Mermaids (1990)

PG-13  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Romance  |  14 December 1990 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 21,084 users  
Reviews: 63 user | 25 critic

An unconventional single mother relocates with her two daughters to a small Massachusetts town in 1963, where a number of events and relationships both challenge and strengthen their familial bonds.



(novel), (screenplay)
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Jan Miner ...
Betsy Townsend ...
Richard McElvain ...
Paula Plum ...
Dossy Peabody ...
William Paul Steele ...
Rex Trailer ...
Pete Kovner ...
Perfect Family Father
Patricia Madden ...
Perfect Family Mother


After yet another failed relationship, Mrs. Flax (Cher) ups her family to the east coast to start all over again. Reluctantly dragged along with her is her daughter Charlotte - going through a very confusing time of her life - who wants to become a nun, and instead falls in love with a quiet, mild-mannered church employee, to the mixed response of her mother. Set at around the time of the Kennedy Assassination. Written by Paul Skerry <pauls@miles33.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


This is our mother. Pray for us. See more »


Comedy | Drama | Romance


PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

14 December 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mi madre es una sirena  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$31,000,000 (estimated)


$35,419,397 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (Ontario - edited)

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Rex Trailer:  The Boston television cowboy as Dr. Reynolds. See more »


Charlotte's blue eye shadow disappears and reappears as she goes to/returns from the hospital. See more »


Rachel Flax: [to Charlotte as she goes out to spend time with Joe] Don't do anything I wouldn't do...
Rachel Flax: Or don't do anything I would!
See more »


Features Today (1952) See more »


Written by Santo Farina (as Farina), Johnny Farina (as Farina) & Ann Farina (as Farina)
Performed by Santo & Johnny
Courtesy of Dischi Ricordi
See more »

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User Reviews

**** Endlessly charming
17 February 2000 | by (Toronto, Ontario) – See all my reviews

I first saw this film as a preteen and have loved it ever since. Endlessly entertaining performances are the best thing about this underrated and understated coming-of-age comedy that features Cher doing what she does best--convincing you she rules the world, and she really does. As Rachel Flax, a headstrong and independent mother of two (Winona Ryder, Christina Ricci), she thinks nothing of jumping into her car at the slightest sign of trouble and moving to another town ("Life is change", she says). Ryder is excellent as the fifteen year-old Charlotte, a girl who thinks that the best way to fight her burgeoning hormones is to devote her life to the Catholic church as a nun, despite the fact that she's Jewish. Of course, the boy next door (the sadly now retired Michael Schoeffling) gets in the way of her holy ambitions. Bob Hoskins is also a riot as the awshucks shoe salesman who falls over himself for Rachel, first out of fascination, and then out of love. Great music, great period feel and very light, warmhearted direction by Richard Benjamin.

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