Film and Food

Movies reviews with matching food – eat, watch, enjoy

Best Picture – Kramer Vs Kramer (1979)

Starring Dustin Hoffman & Meryl Streep

Rating 8/10

Divorce is never more devastating than when a child is involved.

This heartbreaking story is about a divorced couple suing for custody of their only son, Billy (Justin Henry). After leaving her family eighteen months prior, Joanna Kramer (Streep) returns to New York City to get her son back. While she was out finding herself, ex-hubby Ted (Hoffman) has had to juggle his career as an advertising executive and his role as a single parent.

He is a great dad, though he does have his moments. His puts his son first which causes his career to crumble and he is eventually fired after missing a crucial deadline. In his own words he is a “survivor” and he proves that by finding himself a new job in one day. Meanwhile Joanna lurks around in coffee shops spying on her growing boy and chewing her fingernails.

The court date arrives and both lawyers are on the attack. Tears flow and ugly accusations fly, a typical day at the family court. Friendships are tested and true natures are revealed and that’s all I’m going to say because the ending is delicious.

This film challenges the ideals of the women’s liberation of the 1970’s. The debate on the rights of fathers still rages today. It is a sad, sad reflection on a broken society and in the middle is the innocent child. I loved this film. It made be angry, sad and a little pensive. Hoffman carries it beautifully with the gorgeous and inexperienced child actor, Justin Henry. They make a beautiful and realistic pair.

The power of this film is in its realism. It is not afraid to tackle ugly truths about marriage, divorce and parenting. But it is not all doom and gloom. There is redemption and understanding that lifts it out of the pit of despair.

The best films challenge our thinking. They get us to question and explore the dirty side of life and relationships. This is one of those movies and you must put it on your bucket list…

Kramer Vs Kramer Trivia:

  • Budget – N/A > do you know?
  • Dustin Hoffman had just gone through a divorce so he was able to improvise easily.
  • The ice cream scene was also improvised by both Hoffman and Henry
  • Meryl Streep didn’t know Hoffman was going to throw the wine glass so her reaction is real
  • Streep wrote her speech for the courtroom scene
  • Famously Streep left her Best Actress Oscar on the back of a toilet during the 1979 Oscar celebrations
  • Meryl Streep was mourning the death of her boyfriend during the filming, which only added to her performance

We now travel from one broken family to the next. Next time we hit the 80s with the deeply moving film, Ordinary People starring Donald Sutherland, Mary Tyler Moore and Timothy Hutton.


2 comments on “Best Picture – Kramer Vs Kramer (1979)

  1. Pingback: giant twist comfort cs

  2. Manuel Costellowo
    October 20, 2011

    Youre a rather smart person!

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