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Hearts in Atlantis (2001)

PG-13 | | Drama, Mystery | 28 September 2001 (USA)
0:31 | Trailer

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A widowed mother and her son change when a mysterious stranger enters their lives.



(book), (screenplay)
2,906 ( 703)
2 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »



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Story based on the Stephen King Novel "Hearts In Atlantis".

Director: Johannes Roberts


Cast overview, first billed only:
Monte Man
Harry Doolin (as Timmy Reifsnyder)
Terry Beaver ...
Richie O'Rourke (as Joe T. Blankenship)
Willie Shearman


This is a gentle, innocent film about the reflections of an aging man, who returns to his home town after the death of his best friend. Memories of life at age 11 floods back as it was a magical time that changed his life. Three 11 year old children (Bobby, Carol, and Sully) share their lives. Carol and Bobby have a special affection for one another including sharing a kiss "by which all others will be measured". Bobby lives with his mother, a bitter, vain woman who looks for pleasures for herself without sharing much with her son. Into their lives comes a mysterious new boarder, who befriends the boy but generates distrust from the mother. As time passes, the man and boy share confidences and special powers are revealed. The man warns the boy to be on the lookout for the "lowmen", who were seeking him. The two share a summer's adventures and come to love one another before the inevitable happens. A confrontation with a school bully also changes everyone. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


What if one of life's great mysteries moved in upstairs?


Drama | Mystery

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence and thematic elements | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

28 September 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Nostalgia del pasado  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$31,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$9,021,494 (USA) (28 September 2001)


$24,185,781 (USA) (30 November 2001)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


The book "Hearts in Atlantis" is actually a collection of five stories (in order, 'Low Men in Yellow Coats', 'Hearts in Atlantis', 'Blind Willie', 'Why We're in Vietnam', and 'Heavenly Shades of Night Are Falling'), across different time eras with different characters. Scott Hicks notes (commentary at 29:31) that screenwriter William Goldman had taken quite a few liberties with the material to narrow its scope and focus. Since the first and last stories were the only two in which Bobby appeared, but were forty years apart in time, Goldman used the first story as a flashback bookended between two parts of the last story and discarded the other three stories. See more »


The money that Bobby throws at his mother changes from behind her feet to in front of her feet. See more »


[first lines]
Bobby Garfield (Adult): Whenever it wants, the past can come kicking the door down. And you never know where it's going to take you. All you can do is hope it's a place you want to go.
Bobby Garfield (Adult): [answering machine message] Hi, you have reached the Garfield family. Jill and the boys are away skiing, you can reach them on their various cellphones. Me, I'm going to be on the road for a few days. I'll be back Tuesday.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Thanks to the citizens of Richmond and Staunton, Virginia See more »


Features The Lone Ranger (1949) See more »


(I've Got the) World on A String
Music by Harold Arlen
Lyrics by Ted Koehler
Performed by Bobby Caldwell
Courtesy of Sin-Drone Records, Ltd.
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User Reviews

Wouldn't've missed a minute of it.
16 March 2003 | by (Israel) – See all my reviews

To many, Stephan King is a well of horror, Lovecraftian chill that creeps upon us in the dead of night. So when his fantasy of insight comes along, they are struck blind, disappointed, let down by the mildness of the tale.

Director Hicks, screenplay writer Goldman, and the superlative team of Mr. Hopkins and young Yelchin have brought alive this artist's touch of Mr. King, in a finely crafted, sensitive film that just departs from the four walls of our mundane reality. In many subtle touches throughout the film, we -- even those of us Constant Readers who would read Mr. King's laundry list if he published it -- are guided through Goldman's skillful adaptation of the original novel.

Better than the book? Worse? No, this humble viewer will just say that the film can stand on its own, if we are just willing to let our eyes be opened to what can be.

51 of 60 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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