7.6/10
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'night, Mother (1986)

PG-13 | | Drama | 29 January 1987 (Australia)
What would you do if someone you loved sat down with you one night and calmly told you that they were going to end their life before morning? This is Thelma Cates' dilemma. Her daughter, ... See full summary »

Director:

Tom Moore

Writers:

Marsha Norman (play), Marsha Norman (screenplay)
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Sissy Spacek ... Jessie Cates
Anne Bancroft ... Thelma Cates
Ed Berke Ed Berke ... Dawson Cates
Carol Robbins Carol Robbins ... Loretta Cates
Jennifer Roosendahl Jennifer Roosendahl ... Melodie Cates
Michael Kenworthy Michael Kenworthy ... Kenny Cates
Sari Walker Sari Walker ... Agnes Fletcher
Claire Malis Claire Malis ... Operator (voice)
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Storyline

What would you do if someone you loved sat down with you one night and calmly told you that they were going to end their life before morning? This is Thelma Cates' dilemma. Her daughter, Jessie, has had it. A middle-aged epileptic unable to hold a job or drive with a failed marriage and a drug-addicted runaway son on the wrong side of the law, Jessie can find no reason to go on living. Adapted from the play by Marsha Norman, "'night, Mother" is the story of a parent's worst nightmare. How can Thelma convince her daughter that life is worth living if she can't feel her pain? How can she end her daughter's embrace of death before morning? Written by Mark Fleetwood <mfleetwo@mail.coin.missouri.edu>/Reid Taylor

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It happened in 1983. It was a rare and remarkable theatrical experience. Controversial. Provocative. And shocking. Now, two Academy Award-winning actresses make the Pulitzer Prize-winning play the motion picture event of the year.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 January 1987 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

Boa Noite Mãe See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$49,164, 14 September 1986, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$441,863
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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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

The title could be an allusion to the last line of Act III of Hamlet, when Hamlet tells his mother, "Good night, Mother." Given Hamlet's suicidal tendencies, and the bloody end of the play, the line certainly has morbid overtones. See more »

Quotes

Thelma: We're just gonna sit around like every other night in the world, and then you're gonna kill yourself? You'll miss! You'll wind up a vegetable! How'd you like that? You know what the doctor said about getting excited. You'll cock the pistol and have a fit!
Jessie: I think I can kill myself, Mama.
Thelma: It's a sin! You'll go to Hell!
Jessie: Jesus was a suicide if you ask me.
Thelma: You'll go to Hell just for saying that, Jessie!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Better Than Ever (1997) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
revelations of suicide wishes to a mother from a daughter.
17 January 2006 | by jjjackson795See all my reviews

Wow, here it is almost 20 years after this film was made, and I am just finding out about it. I accidentally stumbled upon it on a cable station one afternoon a few months ago. It has taken me many months since then to find the title and details! Now that I have found the title I am so glad. I hope that I can one day see it again. However, the first and only time I saw this movie I was in the middle of suffering from a deep depression myself. When I watched this movie I almost felt liberated. Through the whole movie I just kept imagining how liberating it must feel to have one person to reveal these painful, awful thoughts to. Everyone I had been in contact with tells me to 'cheer up', or 'think happy thoughts', or 'stop being selfish', etc. There has been not one person close to me whom I could tell my thoughts of wishing for death. When I saw this movie I wanted to cry. I wanted to cry because I truly felt the pain of the character Jessie. I wanted to leave this world as much as she did, there are days that I still want to leave! Medication and therapy helps to keep those days farther and farther apart, but they are still there. Watching this movie did help me to realize that I was not alone, and it also helped me to see that there has to be, and there should be other alternatives. I wish that I could own this movie, to watch again and again and dissect it and research it. But, I am at least glad I got to see it once, and I am so thankful for www.IMDb.com for having it on record, as I have not been able to find it ANYWHERE ELSE!!!!


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