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Unhook the Stars (1996)

R  |   |  Drama, Romance  |  14 February 1997 (USA)
6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 1,724 users  
Reviews: 17 user | 20 critic

Character study about Mildred, an elderly woman who has spent her life caring for others. When her daughter finally leaves home, she finds that, for the first time in her life, she has ... See full summary »

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Title: Unhook the Stars (1996)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Mildred 'Millie' Hawks
...
...
Big Tommy Bellaveau (as Gerard Depardieu)
...
Jake 'J.J.' Warren
...
...
Ethan Hawks
...
Frankie Warren
...
Jeannie Hawks (as Bridgette Wilson)
...
Bernt
...
Gus
David Rowlands ...
George (as Dave Rowlands)
...
Jason (as James Bozian)
Christy Lenk ...
Miss Mannis
Brittney Lewis ...
Hospital Receptionist
Vinnie Curto ...
Danny (as Vinny Curto)
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Storyline

Character study about Mildred, an elderly woman who has spent her life caring for others. When her daughter finally leaves home, she finds that, for the first time in her life, she has nobody to worry about - but soon becomes involved in the life of Monica, a young mother whose husband has left her to look after her young son J.J.. As the relationship blossoms, Monica teaches Mildred that there is more to life than taking care of others. Written by Jonathan Broxton <j.w.broxton@sheffield.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

When prim & proper meets wild & crazy get ready to ...

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong language | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

14 February 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Csillagot az égről  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$33,258 (USA) (1 November 1996)

Gross:

$234,843 (USA) (21 February 1997)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

There are 80+ uses of the "f" word in this film, and almost all of them are said by Marisa Tomei. In fact, 95% of all swear words are said by Tomei. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Mildred: [delivering morning newspapers] For the last time... Really the last time...
See more »

Connections

References WrestleMania (1985) See more »

Soundtracks

Auld Lang Syne
Traditional
Arranged and performed by Bill Elliott
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User Reviews

 
One of the Most Emotionally Arousing Movies I've Ever Seen
9 April 2007 | by (Cincinnati, OH, United States) – See all my reviews

Marisa Tomei has always been one of my favorite actresses. She has a very individual, very strong, not to mention incredibly hot, presence and is one of the major scene thieves of our time. She is by far the best thing about My Cousin Vinny, which would hardly be even close to being as worthwhile without her. She is the only reason to watch Just A Kiss. She is wonderful in Happy Accidents and In the Bedroom. In Unhook the Stars, she is a joy to see, not just for her presence and ability to intrigue even inaminate objects but also for the freedom-emblazoned attitude she fleshes out in her character. She is not at all subtle, but she is a realistically subtle contrast to Gene Rowlands, who plays opposite her. However, in this film, Gena Rowlands serves to be the first person I've ever seen who's stolen any scene from the likes of Marisa Tomei. Tomei's earliest scenes are brilliantly fiery, both hilarious and alarming, one of these great instances involving dialogue with other characters while she is in another room cursing and raving into the phone incidentally during the natural pauses in between the other characters' exchanges. But gradually, Rowlands earns our focus a bit more, because I've hardly felt more deeply for many other characters in many other movies.

Gena Rowlands plays a mother on the latter end of middle age whose daughter gives her great disrespect and constantly runs off, leaving her to do her paper route. She has a highly serious and successful son who lives for admiration and objectifies his wife. Rowlands is lonely, riding the gentle winds through the motions of life at home. When Tomei, grungy, aggressive young mother, asks her to babysit her young son while she's at work, a new and beautiful relationship emerges into Rowlands's life, giving her great happiness and fulfillment, but the natural interferences and oncoming decisions of life seem to taper it. The scenes with her and the young boy are so touching and full of emotion. I won't explain further into her character or the story that is driven by her, but I will say that what she is is a touching, very very deeply felt characterization of a common, lonely mother of great selflessness, surrounded by the self-absorption of the people she cares the most for. And you will be surprised at how much you care for such overlooked people, people who rarely come to be the lead character in a movie.

Though Nick Cassavettes doesn't quite have the intensity or fluently original technique that his father, John Cassavettes, had, he does carry on in the Cassavettes tradition of plain and direct interpretations of reality. His film is about loneliness, and about the sort of person who takes so little from us in return for so much that she gives, and how she is prompted to live.


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