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21 user 12 critic

The Ballad of the Sad Cafe (1991)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama, Mystery | June 1991 (USA)
Trailer
1:00 | Trailer
A tangled triangle. In the rural South of the early 20th century, Miss Amelia is the town eccentric, selling corn liquor and dispensing medicine. She takes in her half-sister's son, a ... See full summary »

Director:

Simon Callow

Writers:

Edward Albee (play), Michael Hirst | 1 more credit »
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Vanessa Redgrave ... Miss Amelia
Keith Carradine ... Marvin Macy
Cork Hubbert ... Cousin Lymon
Rod Steiger ... Rev. Willin
Austin Pendleton ... Lawyer Taylor
Beth Dixon Beth Dixon ... Mary Hale
Lanny Flaherty ... Merlie Ryan
Mert Hatfield Mert Hatfield ... Stumpy McPhail
Earl Hindman ... Henry Macy
Anne Pitoniak Anne Pitoniak ... Mrs. McPhail
Frederick Johnson Frederick Johnson ... Jeff
Lauri Raymond Lauri Raymond ... Sadie Ricketts
Joe Stevens ... Henry Ford Crimp (as Joe Stephens)
Keith Wommack Keith Wommack ... Tom Rainey
Kevin Wommack ... George Rainey
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Storyline

A tangled triangle. In the rural South of the early 20th century, Miss Amelia is the town eccentric, selling corn liquor and dispensing medicine. She takes in her half-sister's son, a diminutive crook-back named Lymon. He suggests they open a café in the downstairs of her large house. Marvin Macy gets out of prison and returns to town; turns out he was married to Amelia but it wasn't consummated. He pleaded, then got angry. Is he back for revenge? Eventually, Amelia and Marvin stage a no-holds-barred fight in the café. Lymon's complicated response to Marvin and to Cousin Amelia figures in the resolution. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Mystery

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for a scene of violence | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This motion picture is set in the 1930s and can be genre classified as being a depression-era drama. See more »

Goofs

Several times earlier in the film, we are shown how the only way to arrive at Miss Amelia's secret still is by wading - neck-deep - through a muddy swamp. Yet late in the film when Marvin Macy and Cousin Lymon are shown at Miss Amelia's still, their clothes are clean and dry. See more »

Quotes

Mary Hale: Marvin changed himself. That time he loved Miss Amelia. Well, it seemed like he changed completely -- he was -- he was good to me, and to Henry... You remember that, doncha'?
Rev. Willin: I remember that.
Mary Hale: Why'd she throw him out? Why'd she marry him and then throw him out? Why?
Rev. Willin: I don't know. All I know is... that it takes two people to be in love. It takes the... lover... and the beloved. But these two, they come from... diff'rent countries. And sometimes, the... the belove is the cause for all the, all the ...
[...]
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Connections

Featured in From the Journals of Jean Seberg (1995) See more »

User Reviews

Almost a good one . . .
14 October 1998 | by JosierSee all my reviews

To take on a film version of this classic play is a bold venture. They almost pull it off, but with a poor acting job by Caradine and some questionable directorial choices it doesn't quite live up to expectations. The flying midget scene actually had me laughing . . . A powerful story that someone should take some time with and do justice to.


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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

June 1991 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Ballad of the Sad Cafe See more »

Filming Locations:

Austin, Texas, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,343, 5 May 1991

Gross USA:

$184,890

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$184,890
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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