6.1/10
9,205
54 user 18 critic

Heartburn (1986)

R | | Comedy, Drama | 25 July 1986 (USA)
A food writer pregnant with her second baby finds out her husband is having an affair.

Director:

Mike Nichols

Writers:

Nora Ephron (novel), Nora Ephron (screenplay)
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Meryl Streep ... Rachel
Jack Nicholson ... Mark
Jeff Daniels ... Richard
Maureen Stapleton ... Vera
Stockard Channing ... Julie
Richard Masur ... Arthur
Catherine O'Hara ... Betty
Steven Hill ... Rachel's Father
Milos Forman ... Dmitri
Mamie Gummer ... Annie (as Natalie Stern)
Karen Akers Karen Akers ... Thelma Rice
Aida Linares Aida Linares ... Juanita
Anna Maria Horsford ... Della
Ron McLarty ... Detective O'Brien
Kenneth Welsh ... Dr. Appel
Learn more

More Like This 

Ironweed (1987)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

An alcoholic drifter spends Halloween in his home town of Albany, New York after returning there for the first time in decades.

Director: Hector Babenco
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Meryl Streep, Carroll Baker
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A substance-addicted actress tries to look on the bright side even as she is forced to move back in with her mother to avoid unemployment.

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: Meryl Streep, Shirley MacLaine, Dennis Quaid
Silkwood (1983)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A worker at a plutonium processing plant is purposefully contaminated, psychologically tortured and possibly murdered to prevent her from exposing worker safety violations at the plant.

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: Meryl Streep, Kurt Russell, Cher
Plenty (1985)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A young Englishwoman spends twenty years to make whatever kind of life for herself, at the expense of others around her, in post-World War II England.

Director: Fred Schepisi
Stars: Meryl Streep, Sam Neill, André Maranne
The Border (1982)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A corrupt border Agent decides to clean up his act when an impoverished woman's baby is put up for sale on the black market.

Director: Tony Richardson
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Harvey Keitel, Valerie Perrine
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Two professional assassins fall in love.

Director: John Huston
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Kathleen Turner, Robert Loggia
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Although they live married lives, two strangers keep running into each other, starting a friendship that could blossom into so much more.

Director: Ulu Grosbard
Stars: Robert De Niro, Meryl Streep, Harvey Keitel
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A mother whose child was killed in a dingo attack in the Australian Outback fights to prove her innocence when she is accused of murder.

Director: Fred Schepisi
Stars: Meryl Streep, Sam Neill, Dale Reeves
The Two Jakes (1990)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

The sequel to Chinatown (1974) finds J.J. "Jake" Gittes investigating adultery and murder, and the money that comes from oil.

Director: Jack Nicholson
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Harvey Keitel, Meg Tilly
Goin' South (1978)
Comedy | Crime | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Due to the lack of men after the Civil War, a small western town allows a bachelorette with ulterior motives to save a horse thief from the gallows by marrying him. They must deal with his old gang, the Sheriff, the bank, and each other.

Director: Jack Nicholson
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Mary Steenburgen, Christopher Lloyd
Man Trouble (1992)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.7/10 X  

A sleazy but affable guard dog trainer is blackmailed to steal a manuscript for a tell-all book from one of his clients.

Director: Bob Rafelson
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Ellen Barkin, Harry Dean Stanton
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A Manhattan psychiatrist probes a patient's murder and falls for the victim's mysterious mistress.

Director: Robert Benton
Stars: Roy Scheider, Meryl Streep, Jessica Tandy
Edit

Storyline

An autobiographical look at the break-up of Screenwriter Nora Ephron's marriage to Carl "All the President's Men" Bernstein that was also a best-selling novel. The Ephron character, Rachel Samstat (Meryl Streep), is a food writer at a New York City magazine who meets Washington, D.C. columnist Mark Forman (Jack Nicholson) at a wedding and ends up falling in love with him despite her reservations about marriage. They buy a house, have a daughter, and Rachel thinks they are living happily ever after until she discovers that Mark is having an affair while she is waddling around with a second pregnancy. Written by Lisa Todorovich

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Sex... Love... Marriage. Some people don't know when to quit! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie's name is split into two words "Heart" and "Burn" and separated by a heart symbol in two colors in promotional title logos on DVD covers used for this movie. This symbolizes a broken heart from the movie's infidelity and separation story elements. See more »

Goofs

After saying she was making a key lime pie for dinner, Rachel is seen at a produce dept buying regular limes, rather than key limes. See more »

Quotes

Mark Forman: It's just that there's no door to the kitchen.
Contractor Laszlo: The back door.
Mark Forman: The back door. Yes. It's true. You can get into the kitchen... through the back door. This, we know is a kitchen. But you can't get inside the house from the kitchen! Now, how the fuck did this happen?
Rachel Samstat: Mark. For God's sake. Laszlo, we thought that you could put a door here.
Contractor Laszlo: She's a piece of cake. He's a piece of cake.
Rachel Samstat: It's a piece of cake.
Contractor Laszlo: You are Hungarian?
Rachel Samstat: No. You are Hungarian.
Contractor Laszlo: Yes.
Rachel Samstat: Yes. Hungarians have no pronouns.
[...]
See more »

Connections

References Brute Force (1947) See more »

Soundtracks

Lover
Written by Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart
See more »

User Reviews

Uneven, but less manufactured than Ephron's subsequent films
12 November 1998 | by darnell-2See all my reviews

Although somewhat artificial, the humor and "heartburn" of this Nora Ephron film seem more affecting and less manufactured than those in her more slick subsequent films, When Harry Met Sally... and Sleepless in Seattle. Perhaps the autobiographical slant helped.

Meryl Streep and Jack Nicholson play a couple based on Ephron and Carl Bernstein. They meet, marry, settle in Washington, and have children. Streep's wedding-day jitters, it turns out, were amply justified; she discovers an affair between her husband and a social-climbing hostess.

Streep is so luminous and so natural that one may not realize until the end of the film how completely insipid and devoid of any distinguishing qualities her character is. "Rachel" changes from a wan, nervous divorcee (before meeting Nicholson's character) to an obsessively devoted wife and mother who keeps babbling about how happy she is.

Nicholson is well-cast as the rakish but (initially) endearing husband. The supporting cast reflects the expert hand of Juliet Taylor, Woody Allen's longtime casting director, who peppered it with many familiar faces, including Allen favorites Joanna Gleason, Caroline Aaron, and Karen Akers. Maureen Stapleton is particularly droll as Streep's shrink. Nineties audiences will enjoy seeing Kevin Spacey as a neurasthenic mugger.

The comedy in the film is somewhat uneven, but often extremely engaging, as in a running parody of "Masterpiece Theatre." And compare the spontaneous bravado of Nicholson's lopsided rendition of "Soliloquy" from Carousel (the comic highlight) to the forced quirkiness of Meg Ryan's tone-deaf "Surrey with the Fringe on Top" in When Harry Met Sally...


25 of 31 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 54 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 July 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Heartburn See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,783,079, 27 July 1986

Gross USA:

$25,314,189

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$25,314,189
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

We've Got Your Streaming Picks Covered

Looking for some great streaming picks? Check out some of the IMDb editors' favorites movies and shows to round out your Watchlist.



Recently Viewed