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A Simple Twist of Fate (1994)

PG-13  |   |  Drama, Comedy  |  2 September 1994 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.3/10 from 3,960 users  
Reviews: 39 user | 11 critic

His life was emotionally closed off from the world, until an orphaned baby showed up at his house.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
April Simon
Alaina Mobley ...
Callie Mobley ...
Victoria Evans ...
Elizabeth Evans ...
Byron Jennings ...
Bryce (as Michael des Barres)
Joe the Bartender


Michael McCann is a man who feels totally betrayed by the world, after his wife revealed to him that their child was not his. A few years after his break-up we find him living alone in a small town. But, everything in his miserable life changes when he adopts a little girl whose mother died outside his house. After several years, the real father returns to claim the girl from Michael, thinking that she will be an advantage for his political career. Written by Chris Makrozahopoulos <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

girl | gold | secret | miser | baby | See All (65) »


A twist of fate brought them something wonderful... Each other!


Drama | Comedy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for a drug-related situation | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

2 September 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A sors kegyeltje  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$3,428,774 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


A potentially real (not 555 prefix) phone number with area code 910 was given in the movie. Not long after the movie was made, this area code was established for then central, now southeastern North Carolina. See more »


When John Newland (Byrne) is outside in the stables talking to his wife Nancy, he is not wearing any neckwear. Yet in the next scene when they are inside, just before he confesses his secret to her wife, he sports a gray silk ascot tie. See more »


Judge Marcus: As a judge, I'm always interested in the exact moment when someone's argument falls apart.
See more »


Referenced in On Cinema: 'Side Effects' and 'Identity Thief' (2013) See more »


Running Bear
Written by The Big Bopper (as J.P. Richardson)
Performed by Johnny Preston
Courtesy of Polygram Special Markets
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User Reviews

Outstanding adaptation of a great novel
14 March 2002 | by (Wisconsin, USA) – See all my reviews

I had never even heard of this movie until a couple of years ago. This is yet another stellar movie from the tremendous class of 1994.

I was absolutely enthralled by this story, so I went and read the novel it was derived from, Silas Marner by George Eliot. It was a really good story as well, but Martin's adaptation was outstanding. He managed to modernize the story so it could be more meaningful to new audiences, and yet still preserved the heart and soul of the story. While the original story was good, the novel was difficult to read not just because of the time difference (it was written in 1861) but also because of Eliot's overly descriptive language, making a wonderful story fairly unapproachable to most people.

For me, the most successful adaptations must start with a great story, then keep the best parts and lose the worst parts, while understanding and compensating for the differences between the mediums. Martin's screenplay excels at this, even surpassing Darabont's outstanding adaptation for The Shawshank Redemption.

The acting in the movie was very good as well. There's just something about a gifted comedian playing a dramatic role. Kind of like the image of a clown crying, when someone you normally associate with happiness and laughter convinces you that they're sad, there's a finer point to it, it has more impact. (Think of Robin Williams in Dead Poets Society, Awakenings and more recently, Good Will Hunting). Steve Martin was convincing and provided a character that you could empathize with. Gabriel Byrne and Laura Linney were very good as they always are. The girls that played Mathilda were just right-extremely adorable and convincing, yet not so cute that you couldn't take it.

This is one of my favorite movies and I highly recommend anyone who hasn't seen it give it a try.

32 of 35 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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