Director: James L. Brooks Cast: Shirley MacLaine, Debra Winger, Jack Nicholson, Danny DeVito, Jeff Daniels, John Lithgow, Lisa Hart Carroll, Betty King, Huckleberry Fox, Troy Bishop, Shane Serwin, Megan Morris, Tara Yeakey, Norman Bennett, Jennifer Josey, Albert Brooks (voice), Mary Kay Place (voice)
Academy Awards: Best Picture; Best Actress in a Leading Role (Shirley MacLaine); Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Jack Nicholson); Best Director (James L. Brooks); Best Adapted Screenplay (James L. Brooks)
Also Nominated For: Best Actress in a Leading Role (Debra Winger); Best Actor in a Supporting Role (John Lithgow); Best Art Direction-Set Decoration; Best Sound; Best Film Editing; Best Original Score (Michael Gore)
I First Saw In: c. 2012
Synopsis: Follows hard-to-please Aurora looking for love and her daughter’s family problems.
Did You Know? On a break between filming for Footloose, John Lithgow was called in to replace another actor. His scenes were filmed in just three days.
Quotables: EMMA: And, don’t yell, but I think I’m pregnant again.
And now a Word from the Guise:
I really hated this movie the first time I saw it, and I think it was probably because I already knew that Debra Winger died at the end. So that was all I was able to think about. But the second time round, I’m enjoying it a lot more. While Winger and MacLaine give very riveting performances, I am less-than-fond of Nicholson.
He’s may be a Hollywood legend, but the more I’ve thought about it, the more I’ve come to realise that most of his performances are the exact same. They’re not simply the same type of character; there have been many actors who have played multiple characters of the same archetype, but they’ve managed to bring something different to their characters. Nicholson plays the same archetype in the same fashion: shallow, vain, and flippant. He does redeem himself with some sincerity and humility at the end.
But back to Winger and MacLaine. Their tempestuous relationship as mother and daughter is honest and real. Immediately following her daughter’s death, every emotion imaginable pulsates from MacLaine, filling your heart with grief. In that instant, you truly know her loss.
Oscar Madness Ranking – ??? out of 233