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The Accidental Tourist (1988)

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An emotionally distant writer of travel guides must carry on with his life after his son is killed and his marriage crumbles.

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(book), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Porter
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...
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Alexander (as Robert Gorman)
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Seth Granger ...
Ethan
Amanda Houck ...
Debbie
Caroline Houck ...
Dorrie
London Nelson ...
Caroline
Gregory Gouyer ...
Paris Boy
...
Morgue Detective #1 (as W.H. Brown)
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Storyline

After the death of his son, Macon Leary, a travel writer, seems to be sleep walking through life. Macon's wife, seems to be having trouble too, and thinks it would be best if the two would just split up. After the break up, Macon meets a strange outgoing woman, who seems to bring him back down to earth. After starting a relationship with the outgoing woman, Macon's wife seems to think that their marriage is still worth a try. Macon is then forced to deal many decisions Written by Justin Sharp <rainman88@earthlink.net>

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Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

6 January 1989 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die Reisen des Mr. Leary  »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$97,578, 26 December 1988, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$32,632,093
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Macon's brothers, Porter and Charles, are physically reversed in the film from their description in the book. The book describes Porter as thin and tall and Charles as overweight and shorter. In the film, Porter is played by the heavier David Ogden Stiers while the taller and slender Ed Begley Jr. plays Charles. See more »

Goofs

After returning from England, Macon reaches into his pocket for his keys twice. See more »

Quotes

Julian: Isn't it amazing, how two separate lives can link up together. I mean two differentnesses.
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Connections

Referenced in SeaChange: The Accidental Activist (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

I'M GONNA LASSO SANTA CLAUS
Written by Frankie Adams and 'Wilbur Jones'
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User Reviews

 
Never let yourself be lulled into a false sense of security, says Hurt
7 February 2006 | by See all my reviews

as he writes his travel column. His column is a metaphor for being the "passive observer" who travels and critiques places, but never truly appreciates them...not until Geena Davis comes along, at any rate.

Hurt plays Macon Leary, a man who has existed, but not truly experienced life. Kathleen Turner is the estranged wife, due to the accidental death of their young son, a tragedy which causes Hurt to withdraw. As another reviewer mentioned, one should watch this excellent film several times, as there is much innuendo and insight into human behavior. Bill Pullman portrays Hurt's publisher, who is amused and intrigued by his eccentric family.

What a cast! Ed Begley Jr., Amy Wright, Hurt and David Ogden Stiers are all siblings (over age 40), who still live in their grandmother's house, complete with 1930's wallpaper, a pantry that is alphabetically organized by the sister, and a phone that is never answered because they "don't need it". Pullman is priceless as he visits Hurt for dinner, and falls in love with Rose (Amy Wright) for her old-fashioned persona.

Macon's dog is comic relief, but also the liaison with Geena Davis, an offbeat dog-trainer. She is quite good, and insinuates her way into Macon's ordered world. She is a single mother struggling, and Robert Hy Gorman is excellent as her young son, Alexander. Macon finds himself growing attached to Davis, her son, and her wayward life. He helps the son with schoolwork, and realizes he can still be open to new relationships. Even after all the tragedy.

Kathleen Turner attempts reconciliation,and offers Macon a stable ordered life of commonality. Davis offers instability, excitement and unpredictability. Which will he choose? This is not just a romantic drama, it is a serious character study about control, relationships, and difficult choices. It is one of the few films in which the difficulties of marriage are sensitively addressed, and the acting is superb.


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