With his older brother off to war, fourteen-year-old telegram messenger Homer Macauley comes of age in the summer of 1942.

Director:

Meg Ryan

Writers:

Erik Jendresen (screenplay by), William Saroyan (based on the novel "The Human Comedy")
2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Alex Neustaedter ... Homer Macauley
Meg Ryan ... Mrs. Macauley
Sam Shepard ... Willie Grogan
Hamish Linklater ... Tom Spangler
Jack Quaid ... Marcus Macauley
Tom Hanks ... Matthew Macauley
Spencer Howell ... Ulysses Macauley
Christine Nelson ... Bess Macauley
Gabriel Basso ... Tobey George
Lois Robbins ... Mrs. Beaufrere
Lucia Scarano ... Mrs. Sandoval
Molly Gordon ... Mary Arena
Scott Shepherd ... Mr. Corbett
James McCool James McCool ... Lionel
Ethan Wasson Ethan Wasson ... Auggie
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Storyline

Fourteen-year-old Homer Macauley is determined to be the best and fastest bicycle telegraph messenger anyone has ever seen. His older brother has gone to war, leaving Homer to look after his widowed mother, his older sister and his 4-year-old brother, Ulysses. And so it is that as spring turns to summer, 1942, Homer Macauley delivers messages of love, hope, pain... and death... to the good people of Ithaca. And Homer Macauley will grapple with one message that will change him forever. Based on Pulitzer Prize-winning author William Saroyan's 1943 novel, The Human Comedy, ITHACA is a coming-of-age story about the exuberance of youth, the abruptness of change, the sweetness of life, the sting of death, and the sheer goodness that lives in each and every one of us. Written by Erik Jendresen

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Taglines:

One message will change everything See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic elements, a war image, and smoking | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This movie is based on the book 'The Human Comedy' by William Saroyan. Meg Ryan read this while she was focusing on ways to cope with her divorce from Dennis Quaid. See more »

Goofs

The electrical outlets visible behind Mr. Grogan's desk are modern three-hole grounded receptacles. The film is set in 1942, but grounded outlets such as the ones seen were not in use until the 1960s. See more »

Quotes

Tom Spangler: Just try to believe that the best part of a good man stays. It stays forever.
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Connections

Version of The Human Comedy (1943) See more »

User Reviews

 
'There will always be pain in this world, Homer. And a good man will seek to take the pain out of things.'
4 December 2016 | by gradyharpSee all my reviews

'There will always be pain in this world, Homer. And a good man will seek to take the pain out of things.' William Saroyan's 1943 novel THE HUMAN COMEDY, a quiet, gentle statement of finding meaning in becoming a man, has been lovingly and subtly transformed into a film by Erik Jendresen and directed with straightforward simplicity by Meg Ryan. Some viewers fine this film slow and lifeless, but the true beauty of this little gem is that the actors, director, cinematographer and production crew allow it to let the tine slice of Americana speak for itself.

The year is 1942 and the film opens with black and white broadcasts by President Roosevelt about the tragedy of Pearl Harbor. We meet the Macauley family. Fourteen- year-old Homer Macauley (Alex Neustaedter) is determined to be the best and fastest bicycle telegraph messenger anyone has ever seen. His older brother Marcus (Jack Quaid) has gone to war, leaving Homer to look after his widowed mother (Meg Ryan – his father appears as Tom Hanks), his older sister Bess (Christine Nelson) and his 4-year-old brother, Ulysses (Spencer Howell). And so it is that as spring turns to summer, 1942, Homer Macauley delivers messages of love, hope, pain... and death... to the good people of Ithaca. His telegraph office is run buy the elderly Grogan (Sam Shepard) and Tom Spangler (Hamish Linklater) who are supportive of their underage worker, offering sage advice and love to a frightened lad. Homer will grapple with one message that will change him forever. ITHACA is a coming-of-age story about the exuberance of youth, the abruptness of change, the sweetness of life, the sting of death, and the sheer goodness that lives in each and every one of us.

Put away your need for high action films and comic book heroes and CGI effects and re- visit a time in America when small towns reflected the strengths of youngsters and families affect by World War II. The film is deeply moving.


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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 September 2016 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Ithaca See more »

Filming Locations:

Virginia, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$5,000,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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