6.71 h 51 min1991PG-13
A boy, sent to his uncle's house, helps him deal with the loss of his own son.
Mary Agnes Donoghue
Elijah WoodMelanie GriffithDon Johnson
English [CC]
Audio languages
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Supporting actors
Louise LathamSheila McCarthyEve GordonThora Birch
Scott KroopfPatricia Palmer
Touchstone Pictures
PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
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Prime Video (streaming online video)
Available to watch on supported devices


4.7 out of 5 stars

459 global ratings

  1. 85% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 9% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 3% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 1% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 2% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

m j wyattReviewed in the United States on December 24, 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
A gentle telling of life unfolding in a small Southern town and about people we come to care about
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There is a tenderness in this movie that makes it special, a quality that stays with you well after the closing credits. A gentleness in the way this story is told. There are actually 3 stories here, each one about overcoming fear, and each is so very well done: Thora Birch and Elija Wood could have been a whole movie all by themselves, they are that good together here, but then we wouldn't have seen Melanie Griffith's heartbreak or Don Johnson's caring and frustration w a wife who has shut him out over the loss of their child. How can they heal? Then there's Thora Birch's mother, a single mom, trying to deal w the poor quality of the men in her life. No cliches, politics or preaching here, just a gentle telling of life unfolding in a small Southern town and how people we come to care about deal w their pain, loss and fear. It is in that caring that makes this story so special...
K. GriffinReviewed in the United States on May 13, 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
One of the best!
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One of my top 10 favorite movies! Set along the coast it projects the summers I remember—screen doors, simpler times, but family problems are timeless in this classic. Elijah Wood and Thora Birch are very early in their careers, and we watch the world through their eyes. Melanie Griffith is beautiful pre plastic surgery and minimal make up; Don Johnson is restrained and carries his pain superbly. I love stories of redemption, and this fits the bill 100%.
One person found this helpful
Mike SturakReviewed in the United States on March 12, 2011
5.0 out of 5 stars
A rare gem of a film
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A couple in a small town lose their only child to a tragic accident.
This sensitive motion picture deals with how the human soul reacts to personal loss and how it changes lives. The kind of movie you want to own so you can revisit it from time to time since its theme touches us all deeply.
The scenery is georgeous, the town is small and peaceful. The characters are meaningful and real.
Unspoken bonds run deep throughout.
A heartfelt film that captures our yearning for a father. This is a soul changing journey for a childless man who never got to be one for very long. At first indifferent and angry, he inadvertently discovers something which he thought he might never experience, through the inescapable and magical innocence of a visiting young boy who seems to somehow understand his plight.
Both he and his wife find themselves confronted in a way that changes them forever.
This film is a forgotten gem.
It just gets more and more beautiful with every viewing.
Not a box office hit since it's not really entertainment in the traditional sense. It pushes buttons that are uncomfortable but it's also filled with humor and the scenic beauty of rural south Carolina.
It's really not like watching a movie but more like evesdropping from afar.
The themes of childhood, fatherhood, motherhood, and redemption all resonate in every chamber of the heart.
A very sweet, touching and poignant experience. Not to be missed.
10 people found this helpful
Garth R. MailmanReviewed in the United States on March 9, 2016
4.0 out of 5 stars
Barebones edition but worth the price
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The transfer is good but this is a bare-bones version. Someone created a dozen bookmarks for scene selection, the only other option is play.

The movie itself is still priceless. Unfortunately the movie itself does not echo real life and the Hollywood Romance between Johnson and Griffith ended in divorce like so many others. The stars of course are a pint-sized Elijah Wood and Thora Birch as the bored out of her tree mischievous small-town tomboy who makes Williard's eyes pop when she appears in a dress.

Trouble in Paradise?
3 people found this helpful
JeffreyReviewed in the United States on November 13, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Beautiful blu-ray version
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Stunning quality for an under-rated film. I can live without the commentary, which is done by someone who had no involvement in the film itself but it's worth owning for the beautiful picture quality.
British Hospital ShipReviewed in the United States on March 19, 2011
4.0 out of 5 stars
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I first saw this film when I was in my early teens. The same philosophy applies to movies that you saw when you were a kid until the next time you saw them, perhaps as an adult. I located this movie through the IMdB - (the best internet database for movie discoveries, actors, etc.). This movie is a classic piece of a disturbed marital relationship that is rekindled by a summer guest, (Elijah Wood), who thus restores Melanie Griffith and Don Johnson's passion for one another. If you enjoy drama, true-to-life matters, but on a more quiet scale, then perhaps you will enjoy this one. Not the same movie I once thought it to be, but it also restored my own passion for the peace it offered.
7 people found this helpful
sophiesmommyReviewed in the United States on September 23, 2015
5.0 out of 5 stars
Well worth watching!
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Beautiful movie about what happens to a marriage when you lose a small child in a tragic circumstance. Melanie Griffith and Don Johnson are at their best in this movie! So is Elijah wood, and Thora Birch as the little tomboy who can't stand her mother's choice of men. It is a movie that lingers long after you've watched. It ends with a positive message, so don't let the disturbing plot line cause you to miss it. It is a poignant and beautiful film.
2 people found this helpful
MandyReviewed in the United States on September 16, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Watch over and over
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Melanie and don have an on screen chemistry that is out of this world and the storyline is awesome!!!!
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