The Proposition (1998)

R  |   |  Drama, Romance  |  27 March 1998 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 1,781 users  
Reviews: 41 user | 13 critic

Father Michael McKinnon goes from the UK to Boston circa 1935. For unknown reasons, he avoids at all costs the most prominent parishioners, Arthur and Eleanor Barret. Meanwhile Eleanor and ... See full summary »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Hannibal Thurman
Bronia Wheeler ...
Arthur Barret
Jim Chiros ...
Dee Nelson ...
Pamela Hart ...
Dossy Peabody ...
Torrey Harrington (as Tom Downey)
Arthur's Chauffeur


Father Michael McKinnon goes from the UK to Boston circa 1935. For unknown reasons, he avoids at all costs the most prominent parishioners, Arthur and Eleanor Barret. Meanwhile Eleanor and Arthur desperately want to have a child, but Arthur is sterile, so they hire Harvard law student Roger Martin to impregnate Eleanor, but unfortunately Roger falls in love with her. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


One man gave up everything he owned. The other, everything he believed in.


Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

27 March 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Shakespeare's Sister  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$61,560 (USA) (27 March 1998)


$121,875 (USA) (3 April 1998)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Scott Wolf and Matt Damon were considered for the role of Roger Martin. See more »


The narration of this movie is supposed to be Father McKinnon telling the story to Hannibal Thurman, yet there are parts of the story that Hannibal is in which would certainly not have to be told to Hannibal by McKinnon. If that isn't bad enough, there is a part of the narration (right after Roger agrees to be the surrogate father) that McKinnon says "Hannibal knew that.........." even though it is Hannibal he is talking to. See more »


Referenced in Battlefield: Bad Company 2 (2010) See more »


How Do You Do?
Composed and Arranged by Sonny Kompanek
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User Reviews

Engrossing and Well Acted
25 February 2005 | by (New York, NY) – See all my reviews

As another reviewer said--either you love it or you hate it. I loved it. A well acted movie--somewhat far fetched in the storyline. Very intense deep story and you really get caught up in it. I do not think a lot of the comments from other reviewers really see the value of the movie, or look at it from all of the character's points or motives. William Hurt as Barret is totally selfless in his quest for a family and Madeline Stowe as his wife is also very convincing. The big surprise comes from Blythe Danner, although I really cannot figure out exactly what her role was--is she secretly in love with Hurt? Hard to say. But the acting is fine and Kenneth Branaugh does a terrific and convincing job. He is a good actor and this role suits him splendidly. I do recommend this movie.

14 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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