The Accidental Tourist (1988) Other movies recommended for you
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Plot: An emotionally distant writer of travel guides must carry on with his life after his son is killed and his marriage crumbles. Runtime: 121 mins Release Date: 23 Dec 1988
This is a faithful adaption of a brilliant novel. I have seen this movie a dozen times and it gets better with each viewing. It is subtle, yes, and that probably means it is not for everyone. Subtle, however, is not synonymous with boring, as unfortunately many people accustomed to a non-stop barrage of sense-dulling special effects and violence have come to believe. This film is as far from boring as it gets.What I walked away from this story with is a reaffirmation of a force bigger than ourselves that takes our lives in a new direction -- one that we often consciously choose to reject. <more>
Macon Leary, as superbly played by William Hurt, has been sleepwalking through life for years. His profession says it all: he writes books for business travelers who have to visit exotic places but want to feel as if they never left home. Thus, the title, "The Accidental Tourist".He is separated from his beloved wife, Sarah, played very well by Kathleen Turner. She could no longer live in with the waking death their life had become since the senseless murder of their young son years before. But he still wants nothing more than for her to return and resume that life. Even after a quirky dog-trainer played by Geena Davis in her well-deserved Oscar-winning performance enters his life and his heart he believes his future can only be with Sarah.I don't want to give away the entire story, but I will say that the entire supporting cast, Macon's family Ed Begley, Jr., Amy Wright, David Ogden Stiers his editor Bill Pullman , and a scene-stealing Welsh Corgi contribute richly and completely to the overall power of this story.Some of the best dialogue I've ever heard on relationships, why they work, and why what we want so dearly to work just doesn't work anymore, is in this film. "Don't be lulled by a false sense of security". This powerful line, is what this film is all about, and it is placed perfectly, as all the memorable lines are. Give it a chance and an open mind because this film is the real deal. In my estimation, "The Accidental Tourist" is American cinema at it's best.
Superb Movie with lots of food for thought. (by Greensleeves)
This is a wonderful film by Lawrence Kasdan about a man who withdraws from his relationships with other people and the world after a terrible family tragedy. William Hurt plays the character of 'Macon', a man who writes books for people who don't want to travel and has become as grey and dull as his suit. His wife Sarah the vibrant Kathleen Turner separates from him and after an accident he goes to live with his family who live a life organised by his sister, Rose Amy Wright and settles into a dull routine. Even his dog seems to be turning against him, then he meets Muriel <more>
Geena Davis when boarding his dog and she not only teaches the dog new tricks but also shows Macon that his ways can be changed too. William Hurt gives a truly marvellous performance as a man who has given up on life and has become almost catatonic. This is a film that gets better with each subsequent viewing, containing much food for thought especially for anyone that wishes for a 'safe' and 'planned' life. The wonderful dreamlike score is by John Williams and it was nominated for an Oscar amongst many nominations for this film. Thankfully this outstanding movie is now available on DVD and in the correct viewing format.
A fairly well done human drama about relationships, which manages to tackle the subject matter without becoming a romance, this is a superb film of its sort. The screenplay is excellently written, full of witty humour and biting satire, the film editing is admirable and the performances are excellent. Geena Davis won an Oscar for her role, but it is in fact William Hurt who stands out the most in the cast, in an unflinching but somehow amazingly poignant role. On the down side, the film is slow, a bit too meandering, and the final quarter is not really all that interesting, but overall it is <more>
The Accidental Tourist is a quiet and contemplative film that adults rarely have an opportunity to experience from an American perspective. Macon William Hurt is a Baltimore travel writer whose son was accidentally killed in a robbery. His wife Sarah Kathleen Turner leaves him when Macon withdraws to a somnambulist response, a favored routine to life that is Macon's family way. Macon's brothers Ed Begley, Jr. and David Ogden-Stiers are 40+ year old bachelors and living with their spinster sister, Rose in the family home. With the addition of the now separated Macon, the siblings <more>
are reduced to an eccentric routines of alphabetizing the pantry and discussions of who could be calling while the phone rings.Into Macon's sedentary and uneventful pattern comes Muriel Pritcherd Geena Davis , a dog trainer who takes hold of Edward, Macon's misbehaving Corgi, and inserts herself into their lives. A latent Annie Hall dresser whose mismatched clothing and late 50s car screams woman of a certain age with free spirit tendencies, Muriel gives new options to Macon through her unpredictable character and a small son, who takes immediately to him. Edward the dog even manages to behave and the little family becomes a new and invigorating experience for Macon, whose own relatives have long ago lost any sense of independence or initiative. With the unheard of occasion of the spinster sister's wedding to Macon's publisher, Bill Pullman , Macon and Sarah are reunited and Muriel is dropped for the familiar situation of a convenient reconciliation. When Macon's work takes him to Paris, Muriel accidentally finds they are on the same plane and hotel. Although he is reluctant to interact with her, Muriel is storming the walls of resistance as before. Macon's situation is made more complicated with the appearance of his ex-wife, whose presence is both familiar and upsetting to a Macon-Muriel-Sarah menage.How this trio resolves the situation is filled with wonderful and literate conversations between characters which ring true to the adult situation of marriage and changing lives, goals, and the unexpected. For an American film this kind of complex story telling is almost a lost art in today's car chase, adolescent fart humour, and situational absurdities. However, with long silences and occasional comic relief from the dog, the film is both contemplative and entertaining as it unfolds with bittersweet truisms.
I agree to almost every word reviewer Takatomon wrote. One of this movie's greatest merits is that it deals with issues in life in a unpolished and natural way. It's easy to understand how this movie can be overlooked by the majority of viewers as this movie isn't for the majority of viewers. That is, the majority that's expecting to be entertained in the Hollywood style of film making. With that I mean those "strong" performances we all want to see from characters as Hoffman in "Rain Man" or Hanks in "Forrest Gump". Or vast visuals, filmed in the <more>
broadest scope, or action packed sequences. Not in "The Accidental Tourist". What you do get is William Hurt in what I think is one of his best roles as Macon Leary, writer of travel guides and Geena Davis in an exquisite role as the pet store owner. I've admired actors for the way they can portray mentally or socially challenged people Rainman, Forrest Gump, Of mice and men, etc. . These parts tend to win the Oscars. But I'd rather give one to Hurt for his portrayal of Macon Leary because this character doesn't show obvious signs of any handicap. Actually Macon is very plain. What can be more difficult than acting out a role of a person who's personal qualities don't jump at you right away? "The Accidental Tourist" is a movie of high quality and should be given a fair chance.
Hurt's performance a minimalist masterpiece (by reignsong)
Hurt expresses more with the slightest movement on his face than most actors do with pages of dialogue. An achingly beautiful portrait of a man trapped within himself, struggling at once to stay in and get out
Deeply Hurting (by filmquestint)
William Hurt gives one of the most intensely interior performances on record. He is indescribable moving. His emotional paralysis becomes the palpitating centre of this gorgeous Lawrence Kasdan film. I saw the film, when it first come out, on a big huge screen that allowed me the strangely unique privilege of entering a man's soul. In the surface, nothing. Less than nothing, William Hurt floats through his daily existence, surrounded by his quirky family, his wounded, distant ex wife but first and foremost, his impenetrable loneliness. The character never utters a word who could confirm <more>
that, and yet is there, ever present, if you look deep, deep into his eyes. The scene in which he almost lets himself go in Geena Davis's arms is as cathartic as anything I've ever seen in any modern American movie. A couple of days ago I saw it again on a normal TV screen and all of the above wasn't there. Still a gorgeous film, a funny, melancholic romantic comedy but what about the interior masterpiece of William Hurt's performance? Gone. Did I imagine the whole emotional ride? Possible but unlikely. I took my VHS copy to a friend's house with a phenomenal home entertainment centre and a massive screen. William Hurt's performance was back. His is a performance conceived and designed for the big screen. One hundred per cent cinematic. The TV screen is far too small to allow us into a man's soul. If you haven't seen it I urge you to see it but in a big screen, the biggest you can find. Now let me leave you with this little tip. Look into William Hurt's eyes when he is in the taxi in Paris and sees the boy, who reminds him of his own son, walking down the street. It is the best performances by an actor in one of my favourite film moments of all time.
Probably the best performances I have ever seen out of Geena Davis AND William Hurt. AND !BIG SURPRISE! Kathleen Turner does not overact in this one--I think it was not long after this film that Turner started going over the top.This is a sad, introspective film so if you don't like to watch movies which portray life's real problems, skip this one. And, yes, even though Geena Davis is supposed to be a Baltimore city woman and does not have one HINT of our beloved accent, I let it go. I cared so much about her and her son in this film and wanted so much for Macon and his family to love <more>
them as I did.In this film, Muriel Geena meets Macon Hurt , who is deeply mourning the accidental death of his young son which has apparently caused Macon and his wife Sarah Turner to separate. Geena's smile can light up a room. In some scenes, you just want to hug her! Her films today have been few and far between. She needs to rehire the agent who put her in this film, "The Fly" and "Thelma & Louise" because they are, by far, her best.For those of you who have never experienced agonizing grief in your own lives, you may not understand Hurt's feelings. For me, I cried deeply watching him battle his pain and internal chaos--should he stay with Turner, should he start a new life with Davis? His choices may seem simple to you, but believe me, having been in his shoes, I know that something simple like picking out what clothes to wear to work each day is a monumental task. I can't remember ever liking Hurt in anything he has done, but he nailed this part. I am sure he dug up this pain from some godforsaken part of his life, and he surely deserved an award for this role. I was rooting for him to "let go" of the past the entire film--it took me a whole year to do so in my own life.Ladies, this is definitely a "whole box of tissue" movie.
Hurt is fabulous, Pullman is lovestruck, and Davis doesn't suck! (by David N.)
No one is better at playing cold, distant men who are cut off from their feelings than William Hurt. His gift for bring emotionally-isolated men to life is on full display in "The Accidental Tourist," a sad yet uplifting tale about grief and the ability to love.The acting in the film is superb, not surprising considering the caliber of the cast. Hurt, Kathleen Turner, Geena Davis, Bill Pullman, David Ogden Stiers, and Ed Begley Jr. are strong enough to make any film watchable, at least. When given a strong script, like they are with "Tourist," the whole film runs <more>
smoothly.The script by Frank Galati based on the novel by Anne Tyler is crisp and intelligent, never pandering to the audience. When Macon Hurt has to chose between the two women in his life, the dilemma is not resolved neatly, like in many films. It is portrayed as a difficult, life-wrenching choice. Such honesty is refreshing.Although the death of Macon's son casts a fog of grief over the movie, humour and good will does shine through. Macon's blossoming relationship with Geena Davis' character is charming, the chemistry between the siblings is funny as hell, and Pullman is wonderful as Macon's lovestruck publisher.The film is a tad too long, but all told, "The Accidental Tourist" is a moving contemplation about the communication between people and how it affects mourning, love, and friendship. Good stuff.