161 user 29 critic

Benny & Joon (1993)

A mentally ill young woman finds her love in an eccentric man who models himself after Buster Keaton.


(as Jeremiah Chechik)


(story), (story) (as Leslie McNeil) | 1 more credit »

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From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Dr. Garvey (as C.C.H. Pounder)
Randy Burch
Claudia (as Liane Alexandra Curtis)
Mrs. Smail
Don Hamilton ...
Waldo Larson ...
Irvin Johnson ...
Shane Nilsson ...


In Spokane, Washington, Juniper Pearl - Joon to those that know her - is an artist. She is also a mentally challenged young woman who requires around the clock care, as she could cause harm to herself or others. Her brother Benny Pearl, who owns and operates a garage and who is her only living relative since their parents died twelve years ago in a car accident, has made the decision that she would live at home with him, in the process sacrificing being able to have a personal life of his own. He has hired full-time housekeepers to provide that care when he isn't around. However, he has exhausted the list of housekeepers, who keep quitting because Joon is too much to handle. As such, Benny makes the decision that perhaps it would be best for all concerned if Joon were to live in a group home, something he is hesitating telling her for fear of her reaction. Into their lives comes Sam, the eccentric cousin of Benny's friend Mike, Sam who they obtained from Mike in a losing hand of poker... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A romance on the brink of reality.


Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for theme, a scene of mild sensuality and one use of harsh language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

23 April 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Corazones en conflicto  »

Box Office


$23,202,734 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Joon's comment to Sam, "Having a Boo Radley moment, are we?" is a reference to the character of Boo Radley in the novel "To Kill a Mockingbird", a "Boo Radley moment" is when a person is astonished at the sight of something or someone excessively strange and/or rare. Conveniently, in Spokane Washington, the city that this film takes place in, there actually is a gift shop called Boo Radleys. See more »


Joon's medical records list her address as Water Street, but later on her Medical Alert Card shows that she lives on Cedar Street. See more »


[first lines]
Randy Burch: So we're planning our next vacation, right? I want Australia, she wants Italy. I like snorkeling, she likes garlic. All of a sudden, out of nowhere, she says to me: Do I need her? Jesus, Benny. What kind of a question is that? I mean, "need?" What does it really mean to need someone?
Eric: Benny, fuel line!
[and the phone begins ringing]
Benny: Hey Waldo, could you answer that phone?
Waldo: Hello?
UPS Man: [walks in] I need a check, Benny. COD.
Benny: In a minute. Meet me in the office.
UPS Man: All right...
Benny: [...]
See more »


Written and Performed by John Hiatt
Courtesy of A&M Records, Inc.
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Warm, engrossing film about real people
14 June 2000 | by (new york, n.y.) – See all my reviews

I doubt that I can add much to all the good things said about this film. Acting is superb, as is writing and direction, which keep the story from ever seeming "cute". It is never condescending about mentally ill; I love line where Joon corrects Benny's score keeping of a ping-pong game:" the mentally ill can count, you know". Both serious and comic, like life. Imagine, a good film without violence, drug life, car chases or sex. See it.

66 of 72 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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