6.7/10
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38 user 38 critic

A Soldier's Daughter Never Cries (1998)

This fictionalized story, based on the family life of writer James Jones, is an emotionless slice-of-life story. Jones here is portrayed as Bill Willis, a former war hero and now successful... See full summary »

Director:

James Ivory

Writers:

Kaylie Jones (novel), James Ivory (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
4 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kris Kristofferson ... Bill Willis
Barbara Hershey ... Marcella Willis
Leelee Sobieski ... Charlotte Anne 'Channe' Willis, Age 14
Jane Birkin ... Mrs. Fortescue
Dominique Blanc ... Candida
Jesse Bradford ... Billy Willis, Age 14
Harley Cross ... Keith Carter
Isaach De Bankolé ... Mamadou (as Isaac De Bankole)
Macha Méril ... Madame Beauvier (as Macha Meril)
Nathalie Richard ... Mademoiselle Fournier
Anthony Roth Costanzo Anthony Roth Costanzo ... Francis Fortescue
Bob Swaim ... Bob Smith
Virginie Ledoyen ... Billy's Mother
Luisa Conlon Luisa Conlon ... Young Charlotte Anne 'Channe' Willis, Age 7
Samuel Gruen Samuel Gruen ... Benoit / Young Billy Willis, Age 7
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Storyline

This fictionalized story, based on the family life of writer James Jones, is an emotionless slice-of-life story. Jones here is portrayed as Bill Willis, a former war hero and now successful author who obviously drinks too much and is starting to experience health problems. Living in France with his wife, daughter, and an adopted son, the family travels an unconventional road that leaves all of them as outsiders to others. Preaching a sexual freedom, his daughter's sexual acceptance begins at an early age and betrays her when the family moves to Hanover in America. Her sexuality is definitely not the normal for American teens and gives her a bad reputation and outcasts her. Meanwhile her brooding brother struggles with his own inner turmoils about his early desertion in life. Only within the tight knit confines of his family is he comfortable to even speak. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The city of lights. A famous American author and the decade that changed a generation...forever.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Goofs

The family is watching Thunderbolt and Lightfoot on TV, which was not even released to theatres until 1974, but we later see a date on a gravestone of 1973 (which means the TV scene was probably set in 1972, since there was an intervening New Year's Eve scene). See more »

Quotes

Marcella Willis: Well, if the frogs try any funny business, like trying to take my little boy away from us, I'm gonna go straight to the President.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The cast part of the credits is divided into three parts: First "Billy" (1-27), Then "Francis" (28-41), and finally "Daddy" (42-51) See more »


Soundtracks

Everything I Own
Performed by Bread
COURTESY OF WARNER BROTHERS/WARNER BROTHERS MUSIC U.K.
Written by David Gates (as D. GATES)
USED BY PERMISSION OF SCREEN GEMS/EMI MUSIC LTD
See more »

User Reviews

 
A slice of life in an understanding, loving family.
29 April 2006 | by Tom MurraySee all my reviews

A thoroughly gripping family drama by the Merchant-Ivory team. An American writer, Bill Willis, and his wife, Marcella, and daughter, Channe (Leelee Sobieski in her debut), live in Paris in the 1960's & 70s. In a role-reversal, the mother is weak and has difficulty communicating with her children, whereas the father is understanding and approachable. They adopt a boy from his mother, not quite legally.

Channe's best friend is an impetuous, rebellious and arrogant boy soprano, Francis Fortescue, who aspires to be an opera singer; his character brings originality to the film. Years later the family moves back to the USA and the children have great difficulty adapting to the new cultural environment. There is little plot, just a slice of life in an understanding, loving family. These are wonderfully developed characters that one can really care about.


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Details

Country:

UK | France | USA

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

18 September 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Soldier's Daughter Never Cries See more »

Filming Locations:

Wilmington, North Carolina, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$39,517, 20 September 1998

Gross USA:

$1,782,005

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,782,005
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (Fujicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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