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Sommersby (1993)

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A farmer returns home from the Civil War, but his wife begins to suspect that the man is an impostor.

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(film The Return of Martin Guerre), (film The Return of Martin Guerre) | 4 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Buck
...
Travis
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Orin
Brett Kelley ...
Little Rob
...
Reverend Powell
...
Esther
...
Joseph
...
Dick Mead (as Ronald Lee Ermey)
Richard Hamilton ...
...
Mrs. Evans
Carter McNeese ...
Storekeeper Wilson
Dean Whitworth ...
Tom Clemmons
Stan Kelly ...
John Green
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Storyline

Set in the south of the United States just after the Civil War, Laurel Sommersby is just managing to work the farm without her husband Jack, believed killed in the Civil War. By all accounts, Jack Sommersby was not a pleasant man, thus when he returns, Laurel has mixed emotions. It appears that Jack has changed a great deal, leading some people to believe that this is not actually Jack but an impostor. Laurel herself is unsure, but willing to take the man into her home, and perhaps later into her heart... Written by Murray Chapman <muzzle@cs.uq.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

She knew his face. His touch. His voice. She knew everything about him... But the truth.

Genres:

Drama | Mystery | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

5 February 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Stranger Within  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,104,624, 7 February 1993, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$50,081,992

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$140,100,000
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(DuArt)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film unit also had to deal with torrential rain and flash floods, in which Gere became a hero, personally rescuing horses and livestock from probable drowning. Film extra Billy Russell recalls, "They were filming a scene when the heavens opened. The river which had been swelling after heavy rains all month, burst its banks and all hell broke loose. The cast and crew fled indoors to wait until it had passed, when Gere remembered the horses tied up in a nearby stable. Still wearing his Civil War costume, he waded through the water and by the same time we reached the stables, the water was quite high, really dangerous. He untied his own horse and then supervised the removal of all the livestock to a safer area." See more »

Goofs

In 1867 the price for Burley Tobacco was $58 per hundredweight, yet in the movie it was sold for $12. See more »

Quotes

Doc Evans: [Laurel is pregnant] I told you to use the fertilizer in the fields, Jack.
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User Reviews

 
Engaging and well acted, with an intriguing plot twist
12 February 1999 | by See all my reviews

"Sommersby" is an intriguing film that keeps the audience barely outside the scenes but close enough to be touched by them. The story, of Jack Sommersby (or so it appears) a changed man after returning to his wife and hometown years after being held captive in the Civil War, was borrowed from the French film "The Return of Martin Guerre." But apparently this one has some new twists.

As we watch this movie, we're not quite sure what to think. The townspeople, his friends, his dog and even his own wife aren't certain this is the man who left for the war. That, and the trial toward the end of the movie, stretches credulity a bit, my minor complaints. But after all, this is the movies, and there is a pretty good story here. A real tear-jerker, for certain.

Jodie Foster and Richard Gere carry this plot well, both putting in what I believe is some of their best work. The direction and cinematography also shine.

In the end, this movie is all about pure love of a man for a woman, in which he literally loves her more than life itself. That may seem a bit hokey, but it's a refreshing and enduring message in an movie age in which a one-night stand passes for a long-term relationship.


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