7.4/10
8,250
73 user 37 critic

Tender Mercies (1983)

A broken-down, middle-aged country singer gets a new wife, reaches out to his long-lost daughter, and tries to put his troubled life back together.

Director:

Bruce Beresford

Writer:

Horton Foote
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ON DISC
Won 2 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Duvall ... Mac Sledge
Tess Harper ... Rosa Lee
Betty Buckley ... Dixie
Wilford Brimley ... Harry
Ellen Barkin ... Sue Anne
Allan Hubbard ... Sonny
Lenny von Dohlen ... Robert (as Lenny Von Dohlen)
Paul Gleason ... Reporter
Michael Crabtree Michael Crabtree ... Lewis Menefee
Norman Bennett ... Reverend Hotchkiss
Andrew Scott Hollon Andrew Scott Hollon ... Larue
Rick Murray Rick Murray ... Jake - Slater Mill Boys Member
Stephen Funchess Stephen Funchess ... Bertie - Slater Mill Boys Member
Glen Fleming Glen Fleming ... Steve - Slater Mill Boys Member
James Aaron James Aaron ... Henry - Slater Mill Boys Member
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Storyline

Alchoholic former country singer Mac Sledge makes friends with a young widow and her son. The friendship enables him to find inspiration to resume his career. Written by Stefan Halldorsson <ms@vortex.is>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Robert Duvall is Mac Sledge, His fight for respect was just beginning. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Music

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 June 1983 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

El precio de la felicidad See more »

Filming Locations:

Arlington, Texas, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$46,977, 6 March 1983, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$8,443,124
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to the book "Room to Dream," David Lynch notes he was offered to direct the film. Though he was likely busy preparing to direct Dune (1984) anyway, he turned it down, writing, "it turned out to be a great film, but I didn't think it was right for me." See more »

Goofs

In the final scenes, Sonny is shown with empty farmland behind him, then after a cut to a wider shot, suddenly the gas station and motel are behind him. See more »

Quotes

Mac Sledge: I don't trust happiness. I never did, I never will.
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Martin Short: Concert for the North Americas (1985) See more »

Soundtracks

Over You
(1982)
Written by Austin Roberts & Bobby Hart
Sung by Betty Buckley
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Great Robert Duval at his Very Best
29 June 2004 | by driver_8See all my reviews

Something tells me that when it is all said and done, and people are trying to come up with that definitive "greatest actor of all-time" winner, it will be Robert Duval. I know that this is a bold statement. The Jimmy Stewart, Humphrey Bogart, Burt Lancaster, Paul Newman and Henry Fonda fans (among others) will scream and protest. Sure, it is subjective, but then again, maybe it is not. Sometimes there is supporting evidence out there, maybe because of one particular role. I think Robert Duval's performance in "Tender Mercies" is the greatest performance by an actor in the history of film. It is a subdued performance, but underneath, so powerful. Duval plays a washed up Country music singer and song writer named Mac Sledge. His better days are in the past. Now, he finds his only comfort in a whiskey bottle. His ex-wife has gone on to use his songs to become a huge star. She detests him because of the way he had become in his later years with her (alcohol). She even denies him the right to see their daughter. Mac has closed himself off to the world, he does not want to become emotionally attached to anybody or anything. The only time Mac was ever happy, bad things ended up as a result. However, Mac will soon come into contact with a widow and her young son and he gets a second chance to join the living. In this film you see a Duval character different from any other he has ever played. You see the rebirth of a spirit, long suffering. The supporting roles are incredible as well. I still find this one of the most emotionally satisfying movies ever made, every time I watch it.


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