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A wonderful and truly moving experience
Zach Saltz9 July 2004
"My Girl" is one of those small treasures that, on outward appearance, seems like something it is not. Any general synopsis of the film would lead most people (including myself) to excuse the film as a dine-a-dozen coming-of-age drama with first kisses, raging hormones, and middle school bullies.

The truth is, "My Girl" has all of those elements (except for the latter; the film takes place during summertime). It isn't the most original story, and it doesn't try to be a masterpiece. Its goal is to entertain the younger viewer and to remind the older viewer of the nostalgic days of innocence and the heartbreaking first encounters with the loss of it.

Summer, 1972. Vada Sultenfuss (Anna Chlumsky) is a plucky 11-year-old who spends her summer days with her best pal, Thomas J. (Macaulay Culkin, who is far better here than anything else he's ever done). She dotes on her father, Harry (Dan Aykroid), who works as an in-house mortician. Subsequently, the Sultenfuss house (a grand old Victorian, naturally) is filled with the stench of death, made only worse by Vada's grandmother (Ann Nelson) whose only way of communicating is through her sporadic breaks into popular songs from the 1940s. It's only natural that Vada is also a hypochondriac who often believes she is dying.

This is, of course, the summer that Vada grows up. Signs of change first begin when a new woman shows up. Her name is Shelly De Voto (Jamie Lee Curtis), and she works as a makeup artist for the dead bodies. At first she is discouraged by the fact that her clientele are deceased, but when sees that Harry and Vada need an outlet, she gladly takes the job (`They're dead. All they have are their looks,' she cheerfully gleams.) Vada likes Shelly, but when she sees that Harry has developed a crush on her, she feels threatened. She does not want Shelley to take the place of her late mother, who died two days after Vada was born. Her only outlet is Thomas J., with whom she rides her bike to the lake and discusses all of the Big Issues (the meaning of life, love, death, which ‘70s TV family they'd live with.)

The other momentous event of the summer is Vada developing her first crush. It isn't Thomas J. (who idolizes her), but her teacher, Mr. Bixler (Griffin Dunne). He teaches a summer writing class at the local college, and Vada enrolls. Besides being the youngest in the class, she is also the only one who hasn't been taken over by 1970s psychedelia (one day, the class takes part in a group meditation.)

The strength of "My Girl" isn't its story, but its little nuances of innocent bliss. Vada willingly shows a group of glowing boys a dead body. As the ride their bikes, Vada and Thomas J. sing `The Name Game'. When writing poems `from the soul', Vada writes an ode to ice cream. The relationship between Harry and Shelly is sweet, too. Before their first date, Harry's womanizing brother points out that since Harry's last date, a sexual revolution has occurred. Of course, Shelly only desires a proper and old-fashioned gentleman, which very much complicates their first date.

Well, I loved this film. As a viewer, I try to watch for inconsistencies in the performances and the script, but this film had none. Dan Aykroid and Jamie Lee Curtis bring a low-key charm to their roles. Both have their flaws, and it sometimes seems they have nothing in common. But for some inexplicable reason, they are brought together and their encounters are tactful, witty, and very real.

As for Anna Chlumsky, it can only be said that this young actress sets the standard for all child performances. This is not a performance, in a traditional manner; she eludes all cutesy standards of the traditional child performance, and becomes a complex, multi-dimensional person with true needs. This little girl is extremely intelligent, and when Chlumsky delivers lines beyond her years, she doesn't do it with sarcasm or adorability, but with the oblivious nature that 11-year-olds find themselves in. The world may be changing around her, but she tries her hardest to maintain her sanity and cheerfulness.

Though "My Girl" is advertised as a kid's film, and kids would probably like it, this film is for adults. It isn't always a happy film, and there is a major tragedy toward the end of the film. But rather than sentimentalize, the tragedy serves as a bridge for young Vada in between the realms of innocence and childhood and the real world of loss and sadness. And as dark as "My Girl" may sometimes be, there is always a sense of charm and warmth brought to the screen by the characters. This is a wonderful, wonderful film.
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Touching insight into the trials of growing up
Mel J16 April 2006
'My Girl' is a rare treat in that it is a moving family drama that never descends into being overly-sentimental or cloying in the messages it's trying to deliver. It is a very bittersweet look at the joys and tears a girl faces when she stands on the cusp between childhood and adolescence.

Set over the summer of 1972, the film centres on Vada Sultenfuss, a motherless eleven-year-old tom-boy who has enough problems coping with impending adulthood on top of having to contend with her oblivious mortician father Harry and her senile grandmother Gramoo. And if things were not bad enough, Harry hires an assistant in the form of the funky Shelly leaving Vada feeling her place in her father's life is threatens by this new woman. Thankfully she is not alone as seeing her through her troubles is her loyal best friend Thomas J.

While Dan Anckroyd and Jamie Lee Curtis, as Harry and Shelley respectively, were great in their roles as two adults who both care for Vada and who have a growing attraction to each other, it was the child actors who stole the show. Anna Chlumsky, in this her film debut, delivered a first class performance as Vada, depicting the all the little nuances of the character from the confusion a tom-boy feels as she tentatively embraces her girly side in deference to her first crush to the desolation of bereavement to the loneliness she feels due to her father's thoughtless neglect. She was excellent in showing Vada's childish innocence and rare maturity that comes when a child has dealt with the harsh side to life.

Macaulay Culkin was another surprise as he portrayed the guileless Thomas J. It was a pleasant change to see him in a role other than the obnoxious kid he usually depicted in previous films such as 'Home Alone' and 'Uncle Buck', and he rose to the occasion with flare, perfectly displaying the bumbling but sensitive and caring nature of his character. His performance here proves that, had he chosen to, he could have been one of the rare few who succeed in the seamless transition from being a child actor to a teen/young adult actor.

'My Girl' is so involving for a wide age group because it not only conjures up nostalgic memories of summers gone by in adults who occasionally long for the carefree bliss of childhood but it engages younger viewers into considering the lessons of loyalty, love, loss and growing up. It definitely strikes a cord in those who are eleven years old themselves (I was eleven when I first saw this film and felt as if I could identify with Vada on many things). Most girls of eleven will probably empathise with Vada's views that nothing happens to boys! Highly recommended.
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I feel that this is a touching movie.
clgap913 May 2005
I remember watching this movie with my Grandmother when I was around three or four years old. I could only remember two parts of it; when Vada does the sassy type walk across the porch, and when Thomas J. goes to find the mood ring, and nothing else. Not even the name. I watched it again for the first time in eleven years (I am now 14). This movie is a perfect mixture of comedy, romance and drama, for me at least. I think this movie teaches great values and lessons, that everyone should learn. Loyalty, friendship and love, are only a few things about this movie that I love. Everyone should at least give it a chance and see for themselves. I also recommend 'My Girl 2'.
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Quality as a plot and a score
nethaven27 February 2006
Something about this movie sucks you in. Even if you take away the guts, it has its own little world. I believe this might be so more for me, since I didn't live through the time it takes place, but I found the atmosphere one that almost makes you forget about the "adult world," which is charming.

The story is also very well done. This movie is typically revered as one more enjoyed by children, but I think adults can get something out of it too, from the psychological depth of the characters. The plot also is not very cliché at little that it stands out, and is inimitable enough that no one has even tried to rip it off.

The acting is also pristine. Lastly, what tops off this movie is the music. As important as the movie itself is, even a good movie can be dulled out a little if the music isn't good. James Newton Howard outdoes himself here. The 70s tunes complete the effect of forgetting you're in a relatively punked out society where you won't find as many friendly streets. Also, several spots, such as Vada walking on the tree branches late in the movie, the music composed is an example of talent that few composers have to so fluently use music as a translation of emotions.

The story is good, and the execution, which is equally important (and often neglected in would-be awesome movies), is next to flawless. It is not by any means mind-blowing, but it is not meant to be, and you will remember it.
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cute, sweet, funny, great!
ShortCuteBlonde6 October 2002
This movie was so good, it was a very touching, sweet and just a fun movie too watch, i liked it much better then the second and i think that anyone who likes a cute, touching, sweet movie that has little kids in it, should love it just as much as i do!
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Touching film that I still love
DunnDeeDaGreat16 June 2003
I recall seeing My Girl eleven years ago and fully understanding what was going on in the film. The chemistry between Culkin and Chumskly is good considering they are both kids. The film is funny and is heartbreaking because it was one of the first films to make me cry. I love this movie , but stay away from the sequel.
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If you don't cry, you have a heart of stone.
jonnythemoose10 October 2005
This film is fantastic. Honestly, i have never cried so much watching a movie, and i don't cry at movies much. But even though the bits towards the end which will have you bawling are what the film is remembered for, everything in this film is just...fantastic. parts are hilarious,parts are just sweet, and by the end of the film, you are genuinely caring for the characters.

If you haven't seen this film, WATCH IT. But don't find out what happens, watch it first. I lent the video i have to some friends, and all of them loved it, and told me they cried.

Seriously, this film will make you cry. big time.
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Too real to life, especially mine
joeestlinbm15 February 2005
Warning: Spoilers
When I watched this movie, I didn't know what to expect. So after I watched it, I vowed never to watch it again. This exact same thing happened to me when I was young, except I as the survivor, I was the boy instead of the girl.

I don't mean to discourage others from seeing it. It's just too painful for me to have to endure it again. The acting was superb, in fact so surperb, that it had me left with tears that I didn't know I had left to cry. It's a good movie, and I hope everyone who sees it understands its meaning. It amounts to a lot more than a young girl who looses her best friend through a freak accident.

Thanks for letting me express my opinion.
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A timeless tale about your first love
Kristine30 December 2006
I just finally watched My Girl last night, never saw it before, never really had the opportunity too, but my friend mentioned it while we were renting over at Hollywood Video and she said it was a really cute movie that could bring a few tears to my eyes, I wasn't in the mood for sad, but I have heard quite a bit about this film. I have to say that despite the fact that I wasn't blown away by the movie, it was a nice and honest film that you don't see in today's films, not to many are genuine like this.

Vada is a little girl who basically surrounded by death in some aspects, her mother passed away and her father works in a funeral home. When a make up artist, Shelly, comes to work for her dad, Harry, Vada is a little threatened that her dad might be taken away from her. But she has another love, an English teacher who's class she starts taking just to impress him, but another little boy, Tommy, has a little crush on Vada, but as soon as she realizes what she has lost, maybe she should take a closer look at things.

My Girl is a sweet and charming film that could make anyone feel very good and just makes you want to hug someone afterwards, as cheesy as it may sound. Even though I didn't cry, it does have some sad little moments, Macaulay shined in this movie, you could just tell this kid was star bound, wish someone would give him a break, because he is slowly climbing to top again. But he and Jamie were the stars of the film and really made it worth a watch.

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Excellent Family Entertainment
demid29 December 1998
God knows, good family entertainment is hard to come by. In my considered opinion, My Girl is an outstanding exception from this rule. I have not read the book the film is based on. I would not be surprised, if it turned out to be much more superior to the film version; I, for one, find it unfortunately too often a case. However, judged on its own merits, the movie scores as high a rating as 8 in my book--in terms of achieving its purpose: pleasing the whole spectrum of possible viewers. The story-line is nicely balanced, with just the right mixture of the human situation drama, realism, insight into child psychology and optimism. One might argue that in the film finale Veda is shown as having too quickly recovered from her supposedly terrible and tragic loss, but children are indeed this way, and the depth of her earlier suffering is sure evidence that this chapter of her life will be forever locked into her conscience. It is exactly the balance I want my daughter exposed to. The dialog is fine: mature enough to show Veda's precociousness without overdoing it and to give the parents some intellectual pleasure and simple enough, on the other hand, for children to follow without losing themselves in its complexities. I regard myself as a poor judge of acting, but having said that, I find the acting in My Girl totally satisfying. If I may venture a guess, I'd say that, e.g., Jack Nickelson at his best would be to a large extent lost on the younger audience and would not be missed by adults who expected just to have great time with their kids together. That my wife and I have had.
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A touching movie
Sonya Woods5 July 2002
I don't see why people are criticizing this movie unless they are taking it too seriously. It's a movie about an 11 year old girl who's mother died when she was a kid. she lives with her dad who works in a funeral parlor in his home and their weird aunt. Anna and Macauly looked so cute together. When Shelly(Curtis) applies for a job at the parlor as a makeup artist Vada(what a stupid name)feels like she is trying to take the position of the mother and tries to break them up. make sure you have a box of Kleenex for the end. It's so sad.
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You only THINK you won't like this movie
Thomas_Veil31 July 2006
Many other people have summarized the plot of "My Girl", so let me just make a few observations:

• You may, as I did, assume that this is going to be a chick flick or one of those safe, crashingly boring "family" pictures. In reality, it's neither. Though it's a family picture, the characters are so wonderfully realized, and the situations so easy to identify with, that if you give this movie five minutes, you WILL be sucked into watching it. AND you will enjoy it immensely.

• Anna Chlumsky -- I cannot say enough about her performance. And she was 11 years old? She may be an adult by now, but even as a kid, she had talent out the wazoo. Great actress. Why she didn't have a prolific career in Hollywood is anyone's guess.

• Guys -- you WILL cry. And there will be several points where you can't help getting misty-eyed. Again, it has to do with the wonderful writing and the sweet performance by Miss Chlumsky.

• The script is wonderful. I kept waiting to see some phony/clichéd "Hollywood" moment, but all the scenes were touching and real: Vada and Thomas J. learning how to kiss; Vada first liking Shelly, then feeling threatened as her dad falls in love with Shelly; Shelly sitting Vada down and explaining the birds and the bees to her (and Vada saying, "That should be illegal.") There are laughs, there are tears, and there are the cute moments everyone enjoys in watching children grow up and people fall in love.
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incredibly touching
jillytuile8 August 2003
i've seen a lot of movies and only a handful has been able to make me laugh and cry at the same time. My Girl does that and more. when you watch it you always end up reminiscing about that one special summer when you were growing up and going for bike rides with your friends. in its subtle way this film touches you in a way that only memories can...suddenly you remember everything that happened when you were young. this is definitely one of the better coming-of-age films ever made.
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Beautiful, charming and poignant, I seriously hate how under-appreciated this movie is...
TheLittleSongbird24 November 2009
... and I am truly sorry it took me so long to see it. It really is as good as the other reviewers say. It is everything the film promised to be, and these were the reasons why I loved other movies like Stand By Me so much. My Girl is beautiful, it is charming and it is poignant. I have been prone to cry in movies like the Elephant Man, Fearless, Camille and Stand By Me, not to mention and you'll probably think me weird Harry Potter 6. Here, especially the ending I bawled like a baby, and I am not afraid to admit that. But what struck me most was the innocence of My Girl. The scenes with the two children are some of the most charming scenes in any film I have seen. The cinematography is beautiful and the scenery is breathtaking. The direction is next to faultless, and the screenplay has a sense of subtlety and poignancy. The film's length is perfect, and the romance between Harry and Shelley wasn't cloying at all. The music is truly beautiful, and brings warmth and beauty to the proceedings. The performances were truly professional, with charming low-key performances from Jamie Lee Curtis and Dan Aykroyd and Anna Chlumsky is wholly believable in a more complex child performance than one would expect from her. And Macaulay Culkin was so cute here, even cuter than he was in the Home Alone movies. The film also has a sweet heart warming story, that avoids becoming overly sentimental. I really hate how under appreciated this gem is. It isn't the best movie ever made, but it doesn't try to be. It is essentially a charming and poignant film, that I think critics have misunderstood in the past. It is more than a bittersweet kids movie, it is simply a pleasant little gem. 10/10 Bethany Cox
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a great movie
ross robinson7 April 2004
Warning: Spoilers
I absolutely cried with this movie because of the sad scene when the little boy died after getting stung by bees, The little Girl (Vada which is played by Anna Chlumsey) was upset and she couldn't cope without her boyfriend Thomas J, But she eventually moved on as she found out that her teacher she had a crush on was with someone else. She was upset even more when she found out that her teacher was getting married to an older woman that's about his age (Same age) Vada read out a poem she wrote after the death of Thomas J infront of her class which she chose to join in the adult class because of the teacher she had a crush on. The Poem was a nice poem because i think as a character like that, you would read it on behalf as you would think about the one you have lost and loved. I give My Girl 10 out of 10 because it is a sweet movie and i think it's worth watching over and over again.
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Forever Touching
Nicole102020 July 2005
I watched My Girl when I was 9, and it had such a profound effect on me. Part of it was because Vada, the main character, had such a unique personality for someone of that age. Her quirkiness alone could probably keep you interested. Beyond that, the sweet and simple storyline, the adorable characters, and the heart-breaking moments all reached out to me, even at such a young age (just as The Land Before Time did)... If I had kids of my own, it would definitely be a movie I'd want them to see. I don't only recommend to it to children, though - adults who can appreciate movies that portray life's simplicities will definitely enjoy My GIrl. If you're easily driven to tears by movies, I suggest you take a box of Kleenex with you when you watch this...
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I loved this movie
Sara (xo_prettyinpink_ox)5 November 2003
Warning: Spoilers

Ok, so I was only 4 when this came out. And my family wouldn't let me watch it (this and Beaches lol). But I still did see it when I was rather young and it did start my fear of bees but oh well I still liked it. Today I watched the sequel and I thought the sequel was cute but this movie was just...touching. One of my biggest fears (besides bees lol) is losing someone close to me, because I don't keep too many people close to me. I felt for Veda and it was just an excellently made movie, I study film and I know what qualifies as a good movie hehe. Just make sure you bring your tissues, but prepare for some laughs and smiles along the way. Quite a chick flick ;)I haven't seen it in a while or else I'd give more...but this movie has stuck with me through the years.
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The Sadness Film
bima_satria20 November 2011
Warning: Spoilers
The film was made in 1991,and seem like oldies.but the true is extremely very good story,if you don't see it before. The screenplay wasn't very easy to understand. And the characters who plays make the film very entertaining.specially Anna Chlumsky as Vada Sultenfuss.She make bring me into her world,and make me remember my child memory (friend and first love).And Macaulay Culkin as Thomas Jay,best friend of vada who never let her lonely. And the best part and climaks was when they're kissing each other. But the part is very sadness was when Thomas jay must died cause bee sting. And overall this movie was the Best movies i've seen and totally make me cry..
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A sweet sad movie that makes me cry
cowboysaif24 January 2010
Well, you are a lot of review about this movie aren't you? Some told you it is good, some told you bad.

I advise you to watch the movie. Especially the last 30 mins of the movie. If you can hold your tears in that time, i guarantee you, you can be a Mr.Hitler in no time and burn the world.

Just skip what bad people said about the movie. Don't watch the movie to judge it or check the errors. WATCH THE MOVIE LIKE NORMAL PEOPLES DO. Enjoy it, cry with it. Then you can truly enjoy the movie.

The movie things are all fake isn't it? i mean, the characters,story.... But i watched it 5 years ago and still i believe i saw a true,sad spectacular story happened to my life.
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Wow =-]
genie_rox73 January 2010
This movie is magnificent! My Girl is set in the 1970's, mainly focusing on an 11 year old girl named Vada and her best friend Thomas J trying to work out the world around them. The young actors were so unbelievably good, especially Anna Chumsly who played the main girl herself, Vada Sultenfuss. The original is a lot better than the sequel, but when is this ever not the case?

My FAVOURITE quote from this movie, and possibly any movie I've ever seen is when Vada first gets her period in her house, and Thomas J asks if she can come out to play. This is vague though, I am doing this from my memory of the script:

*Vada answers the door*

Thomas J: Hi Vada. Can you come out to play?

Vada: Mm.. I don't know if my dad will let me... (about to close door)

Thomas J: I was thinking maybe we could go swimming or something?

Vada: GET OUTTA HERE! (pushes Thomas J) And don't come back for 5 to 7 days!!!

My Girl is the perfect mix of everything a movie needs. It is very real to life, and is a touching and heart-warming story. You will be laughing your head off, and possibly bawling your eyes out, and will need a check-up at Dr. Welty's (viewers joke) to stitch them back up.

Unbelievable. 10 stars.
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Fantastic family film!
simplexsong5 February 2006
This movie has all of the traits of a marvelous movie. It's comedic, inspiring, and there's even a twist of romance between Chlumsky and Culkin. In my opinion, they couldn't have chosen a more perfect cast for My Girl. In a way, it even shows parents some reasons why children act in the ways that they do. I.E. Vada overcoming such terrible loses in her life so quickly. If you happen to be at a video rental store, or you see it on TV, I recommend you turn it on and watch it. There isn't a movie out there quite like My Girl. Though I must warn you, if you cry during movies, have a Kleenex box nearby; you're certainly going to need it!
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Charming and sweet
Bjorn (ODDBear)13 January 2006
Vada Sultenfuss (Chlumsky) doesn't have an easy childhood. Growing up in a funeral parlor, she's literally obsessed with death, especially since her mother died giving birth to her. Her father, Harry (Aykroyd), is a very private man who doesn't get out much and doesn't get too involved in his daughter's life. Vada is a complete daydreamer, spending her days drooling over her writing teacher (Dunne) and playing with her best friend (Culkin). But her upcoming summer is going to be anything but uneventful.

A really sweet little film, full of heartache and emotions. Chlumsky gives the most mature and convincing child performance I've ever seen, completely believable and very charming. Culkin is a delight also as her best friend, the guy should never have grown up. Aykroyd and Curtis do well in their small roles and supporting actors all contribute heavily.

My Girl is a well written and charming movie, filled with irresistible 60's music and captures the flower era wonderfully. This film nearly makes me weep every time but not quite, maybe sometime in the future.
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Sticky-sweet insult!
meepozoid26 October 1998
Warning: Spoilers
This was a waste of money to see in the theater and I urge everyone out there to see a REAL tearjerker like Ghost or The Cure instead of this sticky-sweet insult to good filmmaking. Or read the book version of "My Girl", which was a worthwhile read.

Why did I dislike this film so much?

It was predictable. Too much time went into warning parents that My Girl had a sad ending, at the expense of a darned good surprise.

The performances, frankly, stunk; except for a few choice moments by Veda's uncle. The dialogue was immature. The plot was choppy and tended to focus more on what a horrific brat the main character was, rather than the friendship between Veda and Thomas J.

I read the original script. The film was SUPPOSED to end with the line "My mother will take care of him!" screamed from a distance; when Thomas J's mother returns Veda's ring. It was a heartbreaking, emotional way to end a movie, and might have saved it; but someone chose to end My Girl with Veda and her "new best friend" getting on their two-wheelers and riding away. This, I presume, was meant to reassure all those little kiddies out there watching the film that Veda was "gonna be OK". How insulting. Those of us who have lost childhood sweethearts know better. We never see Veda mourn.

Other complaints: The filmmakers try too hard to make us see Veda's dad as a "nice guy", even though in the original script, he was portrayed as a cold, heartless man who ruined Veda's childhood, which would have been much more believable. Shelly was supposed to be about 20 years younger than she was portrayed in the film.

The filmmakers also switch rapidly back and forth between how "adult" the children are, and how "childish" the children are. Some films do this artfully and realistically (see "Welcome To The Dollhouse" for a good example); however, with Thomas J and Veda, it felt like an utter lack of decisiveness: "Should we cater to the kids who will watch because of Culkin or should we cater to the adults who will watch because of Curtis? Oh, well, let's try and cater to both."

This film could have been all kinds of things: thought-provoking, heartbreaking, funny, nostalgic . . . Instead we're handed one adjective that sums up My Girl all too well:

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My Girl
Jackson Booth-Millard16 March 2011
Warning: Spoilers
There were only four reasons I knew about this film, the title, the leading actress and leading child star, and that there was a scene that made many people cry, so I decided to try it, from director Howard Zieff (The Dream Team). Basically it is the summer of 1972 in Madison, Pennsylvania, eleven year old tomboy Vada Margaret Sultenfuss (Anna Chlumsky) is not your average young girl, she is obsessed with death, as her father Harry Sultenfuss (Dan Aykroyd) runs a funeral parlour in the house. She is also in love with her English teacher Mr. Jake Bixler (Griffin Dunne), and joins his poetry class to impress her, and she is also best friends with unpopular school boy Thomas J. Sennett (Macaulay Culkin), who claims to be allergic to everything (well, chocolate and bee stings). Harry has hired a new assistant for the parlour in the form of makeup artist Shelly DeVoto (Jamie Lee Curtis), her job is to brighten up the corpses before they go in the coffins and are buried, at first Vada really likes her. Soon enough though her opinion changes when Shelly and her father have a date and have fallen in love, and the little girl tries a trick or two to split them up, but nothing works and they get engaged. Vada still has a strong friendship with Thomas J. though, they even get really close and have a kiss, and he is happy to hear that if she doesn't get anywhere with Mr. Bixler, she will think of him. Tragedy strikes however when Thomas J. walks towards a bees nest that was dropped onto the ground and opened up, and being allergic to bee stings he was surrounded, and he dies from his reaction. Vada is absolutely devastated by the news, and of course Harry is responsible for giving the body a good send-off, and after running out of the funeral too upset, she confesses her feelings for Mr. Bixler, who obviously lets her down, and says he is engaged. A little while after Thomas J.'s death, Vada and her father have a real heart to heart talking about the death of her mother, who died giving birth to her, and in the end she has overcome everything emotionally. Also starring Richard Masur as Phil Sultenfuss, Ann Nelson as Gramoo Sultenfuss, Peter Michael Goetz as Dr. Welty, Jane Hallaren as Nurse Randall, Anthony R. Jones as Arthur, Tom Villard as Justin and Lara Steinick as Ronda. I agree Culkin isn't on screen as much as he probably should have been, but he is a lovable character in specks, Chlumsky is actually a really good young female lead, and Aykroyd and Curtis are likable as the older characters. The film has its amusing moments, it has just enough charm, it has the alright coming of age stuff, it has the scene that will make a few people (not really me) cry, and it has the good title song by The Temptations, a quite nice romantic drama. It was number 10 on The 100 Greatest Tearjerkers. Okay!
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Professional Expertise Constructs A Hollywood Tearjerker
museumofdave18 May 2013
This is a kid's film. Or, if you are over eighteen and not not too critical about a realistic approach to tot acting, and want an easy-to-watch family tearjerker with some major stars going through their paces with professional expertise, this is your ticket to what Hollywood wants us to experience as a "Heartwarming Experience."

Having recently also watched "Ali Azoua--Price Of The City," "I'm Not Scared," and "Children of Heaven," I'm made acutely aware of the studio-taught limitations of Tinseltown tots, particular Culkin, who doesn't have much to do but react cutely and alter the direction of the plot; young Chlumsky has been trained perfectly and doesn't miss a beat, but the spontaneous reality of kids you find in Stand By Me, say, or Ali Zouoa, has been traded off for predictability. Jamie Lee Curtis has a warmth that enlivens much of the film, and strikes a notable balance that made most of the film work for me. It's a kid's film, and on that basis, it succeeds very well.
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