6.8/10
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100 user 38 critic

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.

Director:

Lawrence Kasdan

Writers:

Anne Tyler (book), Frank Galati (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:
William Hurt ... Macon
Kathleen Turner ... Sarah
Geena Davis ... Muriel
Amy Wright ... Rose
David Ogden Stiers ... Porter
Ed Begley Jr. ... Charles
Bill Pullman ... Julian
Robert Hy Gorman ... Alexander (as Robert Gorman)
Bradley Mott ... Mr. Loomis
Seth Granger Seth Granger ... Ethan
Amanda Houck Amanda Houck ... Debbie
Caroline Houck Caroline Houck ... Dorrie
London Nelson London Nelson ... Caroline
Gregory Gouyer Gregory Gouyer ... Paris Boy
Bill Lee Brown ... 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>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 January 1989 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Die Reisen des Mr. Leary See more »

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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

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The source novel "The Accidental Tourist" (1985) by novelist Anne Tyler was the tenth book written by the authoress. See more »

Goofs

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

Quotes

Julian: Call it something catchy, Reluctant Tourist, and you are the fella to write it.
Macon: But, I hate to travel.
Julian: I thought so. So, do businessmen. I mean these folks would rather be at home in their living rooms. So, *you* will be helping them to pretend - that that's where they are.
See more »

Connections

Featured in At the Movies: Oscar Surprises for 1988 (1989) See more »

Soundtracks

I'M GONNA LASSO SANTA CLAUS
Written by Frankie Adams and 'Wilbur Jones'
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Never let yourself be lulled into a false sense of security, says Hurt
7 February 2006 | by MarieGabrielleSee 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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