6.6/10
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When a Man Loves a Woman (1994)

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The seemingly perfect relationship between a man and his wife is tested as a result of her alcoholism.

Director:

Luis Mandoki
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4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Andy Garcia ... Michael Green
Meg Ryan ... Alice Green
Ellen Burstyn ... Emily
Tina Majorino ... Jess Green
Mae Whitman ... Casey Green
Lauren Tom ... Amy
Philip Seymour Hoffman ... Gary
Eugene Roche ... Walter
Gail Strickland ... Pam
Steven Brill ... Madras Tie Guy
Susanna Thompson ... Janet
Erinn Canavan Erinn Canavan ... Shannon
LaTanya Richardson Jackson ... Dr. Gina Mendez (as Latanya Richardson)
Bari K. Willerford Bari K. Willerford ... Malcolm
James Jude Courtney ... Earl
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Storyline

The seemingly perfect relationship between a man and his wife is tested as a result of her alcoholism.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

What Love Built A Secret Could Destroy... See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Vietnamese

Release Date:

13 May 1994 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Significant Other See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$50,021,959
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Touchstone Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby | Dolby SR

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Tom Hanks and Debra Winger were originally cast as Michael and Alice Green. See more »

Goofs

When Michael takes the bottles out to the trash, a cameraman can be seen slinking past the open doorway of the house. See more »

Quotes

Alice Green: I think I could love you again if you could, for once, say 'I don't know.'
See more »

Crazy Credits

As the end credits roll, we see people socializing at an A.A. meeting. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood's Leading Ladies with David Sheehan (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

I'm a Good Man
Written by Robert Cray and Dennis Walker
Performed by Robert Cray
Courtesy of Mercury Records
By Arrangement with PolyGram Special Markets
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Highly Underrated Film
1 August 1999 | by bjuddSee all my reviews

When first renting this film, I expected to see a typical love story. I found, instead, a film that truly attempted to accurately display what happens in relationships where one member has a drinking problem. It is powerful and shows the true pain and confusing that often looms over these situations. Rather than sending Alex to detox and having her come home happy, she came home very confused about life and what she was doing. This is one of the many ways this film reflects true life. My only qualm is the ending. Rather than keeping true to the story, the filmmakers seemed to give up and ended it on a happy, superficial note. Despite this letdown, I love this film and everything it tries to communicate.

Meg Ryan's performance is one of the underrated of the decade. She should have received on Oscar nomination for it and was certainly better than Jessica Lange that year. I have read a few comments here saying she did a terrible job. I would ask these people to define what a good performance is to them. Not only did Ryan communicate every possible feeling that a woman in Alex's situation could have, she did it with style and ease. Not only that, but made a dramatic move with this film from her already great performances in romantic comedy. Ryan should be applauded for taking such a huge risk and having it pay off.

Andy Garcia also has a tremendous performance in this film. He too displays very complex emotions of a faulted man with skill.

The one aspect of this film that I love so much is how no character is faultless in the whole situation. All members have contributed to the problem, and all must face up to what they did and try to improve what they have. I don't know if this makes much sense (I feel my thoughts are jumbled). In one simple statement: SEE THIS MOVIE. THE TITLE DOES NOT ACCURATELY DISPLAY THE MOVIE IT TRULY IS. The title makes it sound like another sappy love story. What the viewer gets is a tremendous study of the damage alcoholism can bring to a family.


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