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Now and Then (1995)

PG-13  |   |  Comedy, Drama  |  20 October 1995 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 20,596 users  
Reviews: 125 user | 24 critic

Four 12-year-old girls grow up together during an eventful small-town summer in 1970.


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Ashleigh Aston Moore ...
Walter Sparrow ...
Grandma Albertson
Mrs. Albertson
Bud Kent
Mrs. DeWitt


Roberta, Teeny, Samantha and Chrissy have been busy growing up, but they always remembered the promise they made to be there for each other. Now they're together again to relive the greatest summer of their lives. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


In every woman there is the girl she left behind.


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for adolescent sex discussions | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

20 October 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Gaslight Addition  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

JPY 10,796,000 (Japan) (15 November 1996)


JPY 61,639,900 (Japan) (6 December 1996)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


The Tarot cards used by Wiladene (Janeane Garofalo)are the Five of Swords, High Priestess, Death, Page of Swords, and Ten of Swords. The exact interpretation is unknown. See more »


The length of Chrissy's hair. See more »


Chrissy's Mom: I decided we should talk about what you asked me.
Chrissy: About sex.
Chrissy's Mom: You say that very casually, that's very scary for mommy. It's like, "BOO!" "AAH!" That's what sex is.
See more »


Features Love Story (1970) See more »


Band of Gold
Performed by Freda Payne
Written by Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier and Eddie Holland (as Edythe Wayne) and Ron Dunbar (as Ronald Dunbar)
Courtesy of Holland Group Productions, Inc.
See more »

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User Reviews

Beautifully crafted, but relies totally on subplots. **1/2 (out of four)

NOW AND THEN / (1995) **1/2 (out of four)

Lesli Linka Glatter's touching drama "Now and Then" is a misguided tale that beautifully captures the many painful and joyful ups and downs of four best friends growing up in the 1970's. Best compared to "Stand By Me" and "Man in the Moon," this tender movie gently touches base with the delicate time period when young girls experience the confusions and emotions that are present in the process of puberty.

The plots happens over the eventful summer of 1970. The film details the lives of four best friends, Samantha (Gaby Hoffmann), Teeny (Thora Birch), Roberta (Christina Ricci), and Chrissy (Ashleigh Aston Moore). During this summer, the girls find it necessary to ware bras for the first time in their lives, a factor in which they have varied feelings. This is also the summer where they discover their town's horrifying secret about a young boy who mysteriously died thirty years ago. Pursuing the girls are the neighbor boys named the Wormers.

The film is told in the present through the girls who are now adults. The adult actresses, including Rosie O'Donnell, Rita Wilson, Demi Moore, and Melanie Griffith, appear only as wraparound bookends to fill the audience's desire to see whom the girls turn out to be. However, they are not examined in enough detail to fulfill these desires.

"Now and Then" filmmakers describe the characters descriptively and vividly with believable character traits like curiosity and lively spirit. They are very well cast by some of Hollywood's biggest names, who perform with a sweet, gentle, fitting attitude. The movie's actors are willing to give more than the script allows.

The problem lies not within character, however, but in plot. The film seems unclear of what it is about, whether it wants to detail the lives of four adolescent girls, discovering the death of Dear Johnny, childhood mischief: the story is so easily distracted. The film persistently adds in unnecessary clichés and predictable character formality involving relationship conflicts and novice romances. Yet at the same time the plot is executed artistically with an enjoyable sense of style and an effective mood along with a soundtrack that is true to the 70's era.

"Now and Then" is the kind of movie that relies entirely on subplots to propel its distracted story line along. I compare the film's structure to that of a deformed tree, where there are plenty of narrative roots and the story branches off in many directions, but it does not have a thick trunk for support.

12 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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