7.4/10
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12 user 4 critic

Sarah, Plain and Tall (1991)

A single New England woman responds to an advertisement by a Midwestern widower in which he asks for a bride to help him raise his two children.

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Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. Another 1 win & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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...
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Maggie Grant (as Margaret Sophie Stein)
Jon DeVries ...
Christopher Bell ...
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Woody Watson ...
Betty Laird ...
Marc Penney ...
Kara Beth Taylor ...

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Storyline

Set around the turn of the century. Jacob, a widowed farmer with two small children, places an ad in a paper for a new wife. The ad is answered by a spinster in Maine, who writes letters to them and describes herself as "plain and tall." And she takes a trip to Jacob's farm to see if she can make a difference. Written by Kathy Li

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

children | letter | farmer | farm | maine | See All (106) »

Genres:

Drama | Family | Romance

Certificate:

G

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 February 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hallmark Hall of Fame: Sarah, Plain and Tall (#40.2)  »

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John and Ada Bryan's old home served as the Whiting house. The Bryan's lived in the home from 1948 to 1960 before moving. Although they thought about selling the house, the couldn't bring themselves to do it, citing that their kids would never forgive them. Although the house was in very bad shape, it was remodeled by a movie company who wanted it to shoot a movie called "The Last Cattle Drive". Extensive renovations were completed, including enlarging the doors so camera equipment could come in and out. However, the movie plans were scrapped, but when a location scout for Sarah, Plain & Tall came upon the house, he knew he'd found an ideal location. See more »

Quotes

Caleb Witting: Seal was worried. The house is too small, we thought, and I am loud and pesky.
Anna Witting: We thought you might be leaving us because you miss the sea.
Sarah Wheaton: Well, I'll always miss my old home, but the truth of it is, I'd miss you more.
See more »

Connections

Followed by Skylark (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

Come all ye fair and tender ladies
Traditional American song
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Touching

I remember reading the book, Sarah, Plain and Tall, as a small child, probably for school or something. In most cases, movies based on books are usually a let-down, but this movie, in my opinion, was even better than the book itself. It's a wonderful story of a young mail-order bride who travels from her home in Maine to the vast strangeness of undeveloped, prarie-town, Kansas. One of the things I really liked about this movie was that it didn't have any sticky-sweetness that is common in family films. Sarah, the main character, is far from perfect, and there is a constant battle-of-wills between her and Jacob. Probably the biggest conflict in the film, besides the fact that Sarah is extremely homesick, is that Jacob expects Sarah to be like his late wife--who seems to have been a quiet, gentle woman. Sarah is nice, but she is also stubborn and quick to speak her mind. She and Jacob have to come to terms with each other, over and over again. Jacob's character was well-written. He's a man trying to raise his family the best he knows how, but he can't seem to let go of his late wife. He blames himself for her death, and seems almost afraid to let his children remember her. He doesn't have much room in his heart for Sarah, but she barges in anyway, neatly disobeying him and breaking down the walls in his heart. The children were very good as well--Anna struggles with accepting Sarah, and her growing fondness towards her. Calab loves Sarah, simply because he is small and doesn't remember his real mother. I thought the story line was great, as was the actual casting. Glenn Close doesn't usually play such wholesome, family roles, but she actually pulled it off, which proves, of course, that's she's a terrific actress in any role. She was convincing as Sarah, and gave her a little added spice... Christopher Walken, also, was great as the father, who, I think, falls for Sarah without really realizing it. The children, played by Lexi Randell and Christopher Bell, fit snugly into their roles. The whole movie is a very touching family story. I give it ten stars, for a wonderful performance.


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