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13 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

Can Scarcely Imagine a Better Movie Than This

Author: poliglot ( from Middle of the U.S.
11 October 2002

Can Scarcely Imagine a Better Movie Than This

Hey, before you all go "Chick Flick" on me. I am a very Large Strong & Masculine, Macho Man, who happens to think this was one of the better movies of the last 20 years.

The acting was Superb and the Story was Marvelous. This is wonderful medicine for the heart and soul. The Acting could not have been better nor the movie better cast.

I have known for a Good while that Mercedes Ruehl, along with Holly Hunter, Joan Plowright, Dame Edith Evans, Sissy Spacek, Judi Dench is among the greatest actresses ever to appear on film. And of course Cloris Leachman (also in this film) in my view may in fact exceed them all in the shear magnum of her talent and varied roles she has appeared in over the years.. At any rate this was an Amazing cast. This film was like a book that you cannot lay down, and when you have reached the last page wish for more...still more. I cannot for the life of me understand why this film here on the IMDb only rates a 3.9

That rating here is utterly Amazing to me. Or perhaps not. Perhaps in fact I do understand it ever so well and that is what makes me really sad. It makes me ever so sad that films like "American Beauty" "Leaving Las Vegas" "Sexy Beast" and "Fight Club" ratings skyrocket off the charts in popularity when they in fact at least in this viewers opinion should have received an "R" rating...R that is for "Rubbish". Hey o.k., I realize there are a lot of different stories in this world for a lot of different audiences, but it is a sad commentary when this lovely, powerful...extraordinarily, Directed, Acted, and written film seems to be over looked.

It obviously was at the Academy Awards as well....How Sad. And How predictable. My summation is that if you want to see a powerful, Happy, Sad, beautiful story? watch ......preferably own this film...

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6 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

My review

Author: pnk120 from Ohio
15 March 2001

A wonderful movie! Anyone growing up in an Italian family will definitely see themselves in these characters. A good family movie with sadness, humor, and very good acting from all. You will enjoy this movie!! We need more like it.

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7 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

One of the more realistic movies I have seen in a long time.

Author: Allen N. Frazier (alfraz) from Oak Harbor, WA
28 April 2001

Growing up in a multi racial neighborhood back in the 20's and 30's, I grew up very close to most of the Italian families living there. This move brought back so many pleasant memories. this is a movie most people would like who enjoy seeing more true to life movies.

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8 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Didn't want to see the movie end.

Author: jmajor from chesapeake, virginia
26 November 2001

It is a rare occasion when I want to see a movie again. "The Amati Girls" is such a movie. In old time movie theaters I would have stayed put for more showings. Was this story autobiographical for the writer/director? It has the aura of reality.

The all star cast present their characters believably and with tenderness. Who would not want Mercedes Ruehl as an older sister? I have loved her work since "For Roseanna".

With most movies, one suspends belief because we know that it is the work of actors, producers, directors, sound technicians, etc. It was hard to suspend such belief in "The Amati Girls". One feels such a part of this family! How I wanted to come to the defense of Dolores when her family is stifling her emotional life. And wanted to cheer Lee Grant as she levels criticism at Cloris Leachman's hair color. The humor throughout is not belly laugh humor, but instead has a feel-good quality that satisfies far more than pratfalls and such.

The love that is portrayed in this cinema family is to be emulated and cherished.

It is no coincidence that the family name, Amati, translated from the Italian means 'the loved ones'.

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7 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

A Chick Flick to the Max

Author: movieman-41 from Irving, TX
22 January 2001

This is actually a rather pleasant picture. Yes it is a major `Chick Flick', but it is well worth the time. I must say that Cloris Leachman as the matriarch of the clan is outstanding. She really shines and is a joy to watch. Mercedes Ruehl as the oldest of four daughters has her best part since Aunt Bella in Lost in Yonkers. She really looks great and has made the transition into playing the older woman part. Sean Young as the next oldest daughter is also outstanding. While she has gained a few pounds since her great days of `No Way Out' or `Fatal Instinct'. Still she is stunning on the screen and the camera seems to eats her up. There is a plot twist in the final 1/4th of the film that I found to be unexpected and it actually helps to tie up all the elements of this film. This is not a great film, but I found it to be quite enjoyable for what it is. As I went to this with low expectations I surprised to find a buried treasure. It is enjoyable and I recommend it to anyone if you are looking for a film with no car chases or gunfire. Take a hint, if you are looking for a "Fight Club"or you think you need an action film do not rent or go to this. Enjoy.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Good Family Drama

Author: ( from los angeles
25 July 2004

I've always knew Anne DeSalvo was a great character actor, now I know she is a great writer/director also. I have been a fan since I first saw her in the movies "Perfect", "My Favorite Year", "DC Cab" and "Stardust Memories".

It's so rare to see Lee Grant these days in anything. She has been missing from the screen for far too long. It's also wonderful to see Cloris Leachman in something other than a sit-com. This is her best work since "the Last Picture Show". If you grew up in an Italian American family you will love this movie. I wasn't expecting a lot when I started watching this movie, so I was pleasantly surprised when I fell in love with this movie. If you get the chance, watch it.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Realistic and Relevant

Author: Reteena from United States
12 September 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

As someone who is full-blooded Italian and has lost her oldest sister and her father, I can complete relate to this movie. When I saw it in 2000, my father was still alive, but he has since passed on, and this now seems even more true to life now that I am dealing with that loss, as well. If you are a family full of Italian women with very different personalities coming under one umbrella, you will really appreciate the context of this movie. It's a good movie for grieving people also. Sadly, it isn't pop your eyes out disgusting or full of unrelated sex scenes; just a basic plot of people trying to survive one of life's most unpleasant experiences. I think this movie is just excellent and well-done. I loved every single character in the family, as well as the supporting roles.

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The South Philly Italian Sisters Rosenzweig

Author: herbqedi from New York, NY
23 December 2012

I went to Penn. My roommate was from an Italian family in South Philly and since I had a car, I accompanied him there often. The family dinner and kitchen scenes are totally authentic and filled me with nostalgia. I never would have picked Cloris Leachman as the Italian mother of the four title sisters, but she nailed it and becomes the glue that holds the movie together. Paul Sorvino is perfect (what else is new?) as the family patriarch. Lee Grant is a standout at Cloris' sister, stealing every scene she's in. Mercedes Ruehl as the glue that holds the family together (as opposed to the movie) is magnificent as usual. Dinah Manoff (Lee Grant's daughter) is perfectly cast as the artistic daughter who has remained single after being traumatized by the marriage she sees; Mark Harmon is sturdy in the thankless role of her boyfriend. The one who surprised me with being the most natural and least stereotyped of the entire crew was Sean Young. I feel like I knew the South Philly mother and estranged wife who handles her guilt with repression that she played. She was nothing short as brilliant. Jamey Sheridan was well- cast as her workaholic spouse from whom she is separated and the gal playing her daughter was good. The youngest sister, a special needs child who became that way via the clichéd fall by her mother while pregnant, is the one false note in this family drama. Her character and her performance both did not work for me.

But enough of it did work well that I enjoyed it throughout and recommend it - especially if you have any roots in Philadelphia.

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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Amati Girls

Author: rickv152-1 from United States
20 April 2008

I actually found this movie 'interesting'; finally one worth my time to watch and rent. It is true... some scenes were over the top on emotionalism, shouting, etc., but what movie doesn't stress its agenda, genre or 'ax to grind'? Almost None! What surprised me is that I read a review elsewhere done by a S.Fran reviewer on another review site, but found his negative review instead a more accurate description of his "own" review of the movie; not of the movie at all. Anyone that watches this movie will realize that it is great to recommend to family and friends; no car chases, Yea!! Being "in" an Italian family myself, I can fully relate to the environment portrayed on the screen. The movie has its tear jerking parts as well. It is what real life can be in such an environment. Nice movie.

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3 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

You will laugh, cry, and enjoy throughly!

Author: leroydreis from Olympia, Washington
21 January 2001

This is a very enjoyable film with excellent actors and actresses evoking a range of emotions. It contains some really excellent humour which the whole family can enjoy. You get to know the characters quickly and experience their ups and downs. And, it ends very upbeat

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