7.2/10
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31 user 28 critic

Housekeeping (1987)

PG | | Drama | 5 February 1988 (Sweden)
Trailer
2:01 | Trailer
After their mother commits suicide, two sisters end up living with their kind but peculiar aunt in their grandmother's old house in a small 1950s town.

Director:

Bill Forsyth

Writers:

Marilynne Robinson (novel), Bill Forsyth (screenplay)
Reviews
2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Christine Lahti ... Sylvie
Sara Walker ... Ruth
Andrea Burchill Andrea Burchill ... Lucille
Anne Pitoniak Anne Pitoniak ... Aunt Lily
Barbara Reese Barbara Reese ... Aunt Nona
Margot Pinvidic Margot Pinvidic ... Helen
Bill Smillie Bill Smillie ... Sheriff
Wayne Robson ... Principal
Betty Phillips ... Mrs. Jardine
Karen Elizabeth Austin ... Mrs. Paterson
Dolores Drake ... Mrs. Walker (as Delores Drake)
Georgie Collins Georgie Collins ... Grandmother
Tonya Tanner Tonya Tanner ... Young Ruth
Leah Penny Leah Penny ... Young Lucille
Brian Linds Brian Linds ... Deputy Sheriff
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Storyline

In the Pacific Northwest in 1955, two young sisters, abandoned by their mother, wind up living with their Aunt Sylvie, whose views of the world and its conventions don't quite live up to most people's expectations. Written by Ron Kerrigan <mvg@whidbey.com>; edited by Peter Victor

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The story of a woman slightly distracted by the possibilities of life. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 February 1988 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

Azo Min Doda See more »

Filming Locations:

British Columbia, Canada See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$32,171, 29 November 1987

Gross USA:

$1,083,282

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,083,282
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Columbia Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Rankcolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Even though this was filmed in the interior of British Columbia (Canada), the city bench scene with Christine Lahti sleeping after picking berries was actually filmed in the main square of Port Coquitlam. The city hall is adjacent to this central square on Shaughnessy Street (the main thoroughfare of this Vancouver suburb). See more »

Quotes

Mrs. Jardine: She looks so sad.
Sylvie: She is sad. She should be sad.
[sigh]
Sylvie: I don't mean she should be. I mean, who wouldn't be? That's how it is with family.
See more »

Crazy Credits

"For Marilynne and Fred and their two wonderful boys" See more »


Soundtracks

SH-BOOM (LIFE COULD BE A DREAM)
Written by James Keyes, Claude Feaster, Carl Feaster, Floyd McRae (as Floyd F. McRae) and James Edwards
Produced by Nicki North for Brancaster Music
See more »

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User Reviews

 
very close to the book
20 April 2005 | by garko-1See all my reviews

great film, but probably the most misrepresentative ad campaign i've ever seen for a movie. this is NOT a comedy. Christine Lahti's Sylvia is NOT a one dimensional free-spirit. she is disturbed, as is the entire family. this translates perfectly from the book, as does the film's look and emotional atmosphere.

as for the opinion that Sylvia is a Pied Piper, that's just wrong. she could care less if anyone follows in her path. it just so happens that her niece is seduced by virtue of what i would interpret as instinct. the family has a long history of breaking from the norm, much to its detriment. the niece is merely fulfilling her filial destiny.

to say that the story presents a polemic about nonconformity shortchanges the viewer from the complexity of emotions that it evokes. there is no argument. this is just the way things turn out for these folks. and in my opinion, the ending leaves us questioning, just as it does in the book, how much control we have over destiny.


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