6.9/10
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271 user 135 critic

Hearts in Atlantis (2001)

PG-13 | | Drama, Mystery | 28 September 2001 (USA)
A widowed mother and her son change when a mysterious stranger enters their lives.

Director:

Writers:

(book), (screenplay)

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ON DISC
2 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Monte Man
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Len Files
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Alana Files
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Don Biderman
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John Sullivan
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Harry Doolin (as Timmy Reifsnyder)
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Mrs. Gerber
Terry Beaver ...
Mr. Oliver
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Richie O'Rourke (as Joe T. Blankenship)
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Willie Shearman
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Storyline

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

Taglines:

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

Genres:

Drama | Mystery

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 September 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Nostalgia del pasado  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$31,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$9,021,494 (USA) (30 September 2001)

Gross:

$24,185,781 (USA) (2 December 2001)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

(technicolor)|

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Sir Anthony Hopkins discussed psychic ability and synchronicity with Director Scott Hicks in an interview included on the DVD. In that exchange, he tells how he had been in Florence, filming Hannibal (2001), and reading a non-fiction book by William Goldman. In the book, Goldman discussed previously working with Hopkins, and discussed Kathy Bates in Misery (1990). Hopkins recalled thinking that it would be interesting to work with Goldman again, and it would be interesting to work on a Stephen King story. Two days later, a call came that there was a script for him to read, by Goldman, based on a King story. Hopkins accepted immediately. See more »

Goofs

The shot is flipped at the end of the movie when Bobby is riding his Schwinn bike. The kickstand is on the right side and the chain on the left (at around 1h 35 mins), opposite of where they should be (at 15:32-15:56). Also, note that one can clearly see the name "Schwinn" reversed on the side of the bike in this scene (at around 1h 35 mins). See more »

Quotes

[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.
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Crazy Credits

WV Films LLC and WXFilm Partners L.P. is the author of this motion picture for the purposes of copyright and other laws See more »

Connections

References Stand by Me (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

Ain't That a Shame
(1955)
Written by David Bartholomew and Fats Domino (as Antoine "Fats" Domino)
Performed by Fats Domino
Courtesy of EMI Records
Under license from EMI-Capitol Music Special Markets
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User Reviews

"The kiss by which all others will be measured..."
11 September 2001 | by (Western Pennsylvania) – See all my reviews

Sure to be one of the best-loved films of this fall, "Hearts in Atlantis" adapted from Stephen King's best seller mines a lot of familiar territory from "Stand by Me," but that beloved film is a good model. In "Stand by Me," it was a writer reflecting back on the childhood summer "when we found the body," here it's David Morse as a photographer remembering the summer of his eleventh year "when Ted the boarder moved upstairs." Downplaying King's supernatural elements, this film slowly, but surely, builds to an emotional payoff every bit as moving as the end of Rob Reiner's gem.

This is a small, gentle film with lots of character development and period atmosphere. The tech credits such as production design and cinematography are superb and bring to life a time--1960--which, for some of us, was not that long ago. The child-actors are perfectly cast, and Anthony Hopkins as the mysterious stranger gives one of his best, most-heartfelt performances. (This guy could read USA Today weather forecasts aloud and make them sound like Shakespeare.) While others may have taken a radically different approach to the material, emphasizing action and suspense, I think screenwriter William ("Misery") Goldman and director Scott ("Shine," "Snow Falling on Cedars") Hicks ultimately hit the right notes. I will interested in seeing if this decidedly low-key approach strikes a box office chord with moviegoers frazzled by the big, dumb summer action films. If there's any fairness left in the world it will. It's that good.


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