The life of a provincial town becomes stormy after the appearance of an anonymous love letter.

Director:

Peter Ho-Sun Chan

Writers:

Cathleen Schine (novel), Maria Maggenti (screenplay)
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kate Capshaw ... Helen
Blythe Danner ... Lillian MacFarquhar
Ellen DeGeneres ... Janet Hall
Julianne Nicholson ... Jennifer
Tom Everett Scott ... Johnny
Tom Selleck ... George Matthias
Gloria Stuart ... Eleanor
Bill Buell ... Officer Dan
Alice Drummond ... Postal Clerk
Erik Jensen ... Ray
Margaret Ann Brady Margaret Ann Brady ... Selma
Jessica Capshaw ... Kelly
Walter Covell Walter Covell ... Post Office Customer
Patrick Donnelly ... Bookstore Customer
Lucas Hall Lucas Hall ... Garbage Man
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Storyline

The power of words and images to open hearts. Helen runs, miles a day, to burn off energy: she's an emotional celibate. Going through the post at her shop, she finds a romantic and poetic letter between the couch cushions, unsigned, and thinks it's for her. It melts her resistance to feelings, and soon she undertakes an affair with Johnny, a collegiate employee. (He sees the letter and thinks she wrote it to him; he quotes some of it, so she thinks he wrote it to her.) In the background are Helen's long-time friend, George, who loves her, and her mother who abruptly left on a long trip months before. Discovering who actually wrote the letter brings insight and promise. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

No one knows who sent it. No one knows who it's for. But everyone's getting the same message.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 on appeal for some sensuality, nudity and strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Blythe Danner plays Kate Capshaws mother, yet is only 10 years older than her in real life. See more »

Goofs

Johnny jumps in the ocean with his socks on but when he emerges seconds later his feet are bare See more »

Quotes

Lillian MacFarquhar: So, there you are darling, Mommy's a dyke.
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Connections

Referenced in Flushed Away (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Only The Lonely
Written by Roy Orbison & Joe Melson
Performed by Roy Orbison
Courtesy of Orbison Records, Inc.
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User Reviews

Pleasant romance
1 June 1999 | by cinemelSee all my reviews

Kate Capshaw stars in this charming story of a divorced book store owner who finds a love letter between the cushions of her couch. Who is it from? Therein lies the tale. Working for her in the book store are a handsome college student (Tom Everett Scott), a feisty store manager (Ellen DeGeneres), and a sweet young teenager (Juliane Nicholson). Waiting in the wings is Tom Selleck, the town fireman, who has held a torch for Capshaw all his life. These are all pleasant folks to spend a couple of hours with. The town is picturesque and the background score is romantic (by Luis Bacalov, composer of Il Postino). It's interesting to note that everyone does not end up with whom you expect. Supporting roles are ably, though too briefly, handled by Blythe Danner and Gloria Stewart (Titanic). Director, Peter Chan, who has been involved in the Hong Kong film world, has done surprisingly well with this material which is so American. I'm sure we'll be hearing from him again.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 May 1999 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Love Letter See more »

Filming Locations:

Gloucester, Massachusetts, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,692,819, 23 May 1999

Gross USA:

$8,302,478

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$9,177,355
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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