The Buckmans are a midwestern family all dealing with their lives: estranged relatives, raising children, pressures of the job, and learning to be a good parent and spouse.

Director:

Ron Howard

Writers:

Lowell Ganz (story), Babaloo Mandel (story) | 3 more credits »
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Popularity
3,450 ( 269)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 4 wins & 12 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Steve Martin ... Gil
Mary Steenburgen ... Karen
Dianne Wiest ... Helen
Jason Robards ... Frank
Rick Moranis ... Nathan
Tom Hulce ... Larry
Martha Plimpton ... Julie
Keanu Reeves ... Tod
Harley Jane Kozak ... Susan (as Harley Kozak)
Dennis Dugan ... David Brodsky
Joaquin Phoenix ... Garry (as Leaf Phoenix)
Eileen Ryan ... Marilyn
Helen Shaw Helen Shaw ... Grandma
Jasen Fisher ... Kevin
Paul Linke ... George Bowman
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Storyline

The story of the Buckman family and friends, attempting to bring up their children. They suffer/enjoy all the events that occur: estranged relatives, the "black sheep" of the family, the eccentrics, the skeletons in the closet, and the rebellious teenagers. Written by Murray Chapman <muzzle@cs.uq.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The director of "Splash," "Willow" and "Cocoon" brings you a comedy about life, love and the gentle art of raising children. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In a 2016 interview, Helen Mirren said she had never regretted not having children, except briefly when watching this film: "It was about the whole story of being a parent, and how it never stops, even when you're a grandparent. I realized I would never experience that, and for about twenty minutes, I sobbed for the loss of that, and the fact that I never experienced it." See more »

Goofs

Another sign that the movie was shot in Florida rather than Missouri where it's meant to be set: the booth where Julie and Tod pick up the pictures is in front of a Publix, a grocery store found ONLY in Florida until 1991. The first Publix outside Florida opened in Savannah, Georgia, in 1991. See more »

Quotes

Susan: You see, when I met him, I was a little wild, I was a little out of control and he kind of... took me in hand. I liked that. He's very... commanding. He got me into teaching, he got my shit together. Boy, he really turned on.
Karen: [incredulous] Really?
[changes her tone of voice]
Karen: I-I mean, uh, of course. Really?
Susan: Oh, Nathan and I used to be hot. I know he doesn't look it but, I mean, we were like rabbits. I used to give him... you know... oral, you know... on the highway.
Karen: What?
Susan: You know, he was always ...
[...]
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Crazy Credits

At the end of the credits: "Caution: Inhaling of helium from balloons is dangerous, and can cause serious injury or death." See more »

Connections

Featured in At the Movies: Hollywood's Hidden Stars (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

The Diarrhea Song
Performed by Jasen Fisher
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User Reviews

Are you someone's parent? Are you someone's child? SEE THIS MOVIE!!
18 April 2001 | by bigpurplebearSee all my reviews

When "Parenthood" first came out, I did my level best to avoid it, certain that it seeing it would be roughly akin to being embalmed with maple syrup. Then came that dreadfully slow night at home a couple of years later, faced with a choice on the ol' tube between endless reruns of "Three's Company" and HBO showing -- oh, no! -- "Parenthood." So I clicked on HBO, gritted my teeth, prepared for the worst . . .

And was wrong.

Ron Howard is one savvy filmmaker. Maybe one of the savviest, I'm not sure. But I do know that, to make "Parenthood," he combined his savvy with all the heart he could muster (which was plenty, apparently) and that the result is a masterpiece.

Virtually every aspect of parenting is examined; moreover, it is done in a way that -- miracle of miracles! -- causes you to think, and to feel, every bit as much as it makes you laugh. Throat lumping up? Not to worry, here comes another belly-laugh to smooth it out.

The key to the film's message may lie with Jason Robards' speech --"There's no goal line in parenting, no end zone where you spike the ball and that's it . . ." -- or it may lie with Keanu Reeves -- "You know, Mrs. Buckman, you need a license to drive a car or buy a dog . . ." -- or it may simply be Gil Buckman's (Steve Martin) heroism in salvaging his emotionally disturbed son's birthday party; then again, it might be embodied in the frantic, stressed out stoicism of Dianne Wiest's single mom character as she comes to grips with her teenage daughter's choices and impending motherhood. But wherever you find it herein, the message is simple and profound: Parenthood is nothing less than heroism on a daily basis. Quiet, unheralded, underappreciated heroism.

One of the finest things about this movie is that nobody steps out of character. There are no miraculous revelations, no nick-of-time cavalry charges or character transformations. Characters here solve their individual dilemmas by growing WITHIN their characters. And realistically, at that.

It's been said that a really good story leaves its author crying as he/she writes the final pages. Sometimes -- not often enough -- a really good movie can leave a reviewer the same way as he finishes his commentary, crying and laughing simultaneously.

Well, don't just stand there! Someone get me a Kleenex!!


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

2 August 1989 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Parenthood See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$10,506,450, 6 August 1989

Gross USA:

$100,047,830

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$126,297,830
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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