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Manchester by the Sea (2016)

R | | Drama | 16 December 2016 (USA)
2:30 | Trailer
A depressed uncle is asked to take care of his teenage nephew after the boy's father dies.


Kenneth Lonergan
994 ( 81)
Won 2 Oscars. Another 129 wins & 259 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Casey Affleck ... Lee Chandler
Ben O'Brien ... Young Patrick
Kyle Chandler ... Joe Chandler
Richard Donelly Richard Donelly ... Mr. Martinez (1st Tenant)
Virginia Loring Cooke Virginia Loring Cooke ... Mrs. Groom (2nd tenant)
Quincy Tyler Bernstine ... Marianne (3rd Tenant)
Missy Yager ... Mrs. Olsen (4th Tenant)
Stephen McKinley Henderson ... Mr. Emery
Ben Hanson Ben Hanson ... Lenny - the bartender
Mary Mallen ... Sharon
Lewis D. Wheeler ... 1st Businessman at Bar
Anthony Estrella Anthony Estrella ... 2nd Businessman at Bar
C.J. Wilson ... George
Susan Pourfar ... Nurse Irene
Robert Sella Robert Sella ... Dr. Muller


Lee Chandler is a brooding, irritable loner who works as a handyman for a Boston apartment block. One damp winter day he gets a call summoning him to his hometown, north of the city. His brother's heart has given out suddenly, and he's been named guardian to his 16-year-old nephew. As if losing his only sibling and doubts about raising a teenager weren't enough, his return to the past re-opens an unspeakable tragedy. Written by Jwelch5742

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Breathtaking... A truly incredible piece of cinema! See more »



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language throughout and some sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Matt Damon and Casey Affleck continuously discussed how deeply connected Lee remains to Joe, even though he isolates himself from the rest of the world. His brother's last act is an attempt to have Lee reengage with the world. See more »


When Lee informs Patrick of his final decisions at dinner, Patrick's arms change between folded and other positions as camera shots change. See more »


Patrick: You were a tremendous help.
Lee Chandler: I didn't ask to sit down there.
Patrick: You can't make small talk like every other grown-up in the world?
Lee Chandler: No.
Patrick: You can't talk about boring bullshit for half an hour? "Hey, how about those interest rates?" "Hey, I lost my Triple A card." Like everybody else?
Lee Chandler: No, sorry.
Patrick: You're a fucking asshole.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The end credits rolls on with background of nature, boats and the town, in particular the scenic beaches. See more »

Alternate Versions

In Australia, the film was originally passed MA-15+ uncut, however the distributors opted to re-edit the audio and cut the length of the film, in order to remove every use of the term 'c-t' and 'motherf--er'. Following these changes the film was later re-classified and the rating was lowered to 'M'. See more »


I Gotta Run
Written by Jordan Richardson
Lyrics by Kenneth Lonergan
Performed by Stentorians (as Stentorian)
See more »

User Reviews

Brilliant portrayal of a troubled soul
4 August 2017 | by mmoiyadiSee all my reviews

The best part about this movie is the emotional connection it establishes with the protagonist. You could actually feel for Lee Chandler (Casey Affleck in a truly Oscar worthy performance) when he tries to cope up with the tragedy that has destroyed him as a person. He is an emotionally distraught person yet he realizes the fact that he must continue to live, continue to take responsibility that he despises the most because of the tragedy that he has faced in his life, fighting his inner daemons to be a nice guardian to his nephew.

Lee is a janitor working in Boston when he gets to know about the sudden death of his brother due to heart attack in Manchester which is also the place where Lee belongs. As per his brother's will Lee has to be the guardian of his 16 year old son. Lee is much reluctant to accept this responsibility despite the fact that he loves his nephew very much. How he accept the responsibility and finally gives in to every wish of his nephew, which includes moving to Manchester, a place he so despises due to the personal tragedy he has suffered forms the crux of the story.

Initially it is hard to understand the erratic and reserved behavior of Lee considering his jovial nature from the pre-tragedy flashbacks but as soon as you get to know of the tragedy you completely change your thinking about Lee and your heart reaches out to him. The reason for this change is the way Lee is played by Casey Affleck. He makes the character his own and not once you feel like he is acting..no melodrama. Such a restrained performance yet conveying the frustration of the character beautifully to viewers is something not many actors can achieve. Full credits to him for such a brilliant portrayal.

We get to hear a lot of stories about someone's struggle to achieve his or her dream by facing all difficulties, hardships and those stories then becomes a source of inspiration to those having similar dreams but are yet to achieve the same. But what about those who have no dreams or rather have lost the ability to dream, those whose past haunts them so much that a dream has no meaning in their life. All they have are nightmares. Clearly such stories does not inspire them. Then what is it that keeps them going? What are their struggles? Even if they hope to be caring to their loved ones, even if they live and survive for their well being, they must fight the past and it is this struggle which makes for a compelling viewing. These stories should also be a source of inspiration to those depressed souls with similar traumatic pasts and that is what this movie does brilliantly. In a way this movie reminded me of 'The pursuit of happiness' in terms of a man's struggle to survive and care for one's loved ones. But in this case it is not the outside world they are fighting but the world inside them.

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Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official Site | See more »





Release Date:

16 December 2016 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Manchester by the Sea See more »

Filming Locations:

Lynn, Massachusetts, USA See more »


Box Office


$9,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$256,498, 20 November 2016

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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