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Ironweed (1987) - movie overview

Ironweed (1987)

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Plot Description

Release Date
Dec 18, 1987 (USA)

MPAA Rating

Running Time
2 hours, 23 minutes

Country USA

Studio Taft Entertainment, TriStar

More info on

Other Titles
• Ironweed
• Wolfsmilch (1987)

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Genre: Drama, Buddies, Ghosts, Melodrama, Period Piece, Drugs, Urban

Plot: Hector Babenco's bittersweet film, based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by William Kennedy, stars Jack Nicholson as Francis Phelan, a drunken former baseball player running away from life and the painful, guilty memories that haunt him. Set in the winter of 1938, IRONWEED features Francis wandering the streets of Albany, New York, with his pal Rudy (musician Tom Waits) looking for odd jobs, cheap drinks, and flophouses. Meryl Streep costars as Helen Archer, Francis's longtime girlfriend and partner in drink. Together they lament the misery of life and ponder their tragic pasts, hoping to find a way to free themselves from their troubled lives--but never believing it's possible. Told in a series of drunken flashbacks, this dark portrait of depression-era hopelessness is a searing character-driven drama. Nicholson and Streep deliver painfully honest Oscar-nominated portrayals of two down-on-their-luck vagabonds moodily stewing in an alcoholic daze. The film, South American director Babenco's American debut, also features an excellent performance by Waits.

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 Directed by
Hector Babenco
Kiss of the Spider Woman, Carandiru, At Play in the Fields of the Lord
 Written by
William Kennedy
The Cotton Club
Jack Nicholson
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, The Shining, As Good as It Gets
Meryl Streep
Adaptation., The Deer Hunter, Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events
Michael O'Keefe
Caddyshack, The Hot Chick, The Glass House
Diane Venora
Heat, The Insider, Romeo + Juliet
Tom Waits
Dracula, Mystery Men, The Outsiders
Nathan Lane
The Lion King, The Birdcage, Titan A.E.
Carroll Baker
The Game, Kindergarten Cop, Giant
 Music By
John Morris
Young Frankenstein, Spaceballs, The Elephant Man

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