7.4/10
8,603
80 user 39 critic

Tender Mercies (1983)

A broken-down, middle-aged country singer gets a new wife, reaches out to his long-lost daughter, and tries to put his troubled life back together.

Director:

Bruce Beresford

Writer:

Horton Foote
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Won 2 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Duvall ... Mac Sledge
Tess Harper ... Rosa Lee
Betty Buckley ... Dixie
Wilford Brimley ... Harry
Ellen Barkin ... Sue Anne
Allan Hubbard ... Sonny
Lenny von Dohlen ... Robert (as Lenny Von Dohlen)
Paul Gleason ... Reporter
Michael Crabtree Michael Crabtree ... Lewis Menefee
Norman Bennett ... Reverend Hotchkiss
Andrew Scott Hollon Andrew Scott Hollon ... Larue
Rick Murray Rick Murray ... Jake - Slater Mill Boys Member
Stephen Funchess Stephen Funchess ... Bertie - Slater Mill Boys Member
Glen Fleming Glen Fleming ... Steve - Slater Mill Boys Member
James Aaron James Aaron ... Henry - Slater Mill Boys Member
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Storyline

Alchoholic former country singer Mac Sledge makes friends with a young widow and her son. The friendship enables him to find inspiration to resume his career. Written by Stefan Halldorsson <ms@vortex.is>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Robert Duvall is Mac Sledge, down and out country singer. His struggle for fame was over. His fight for respect was just beginning See more »

Genres:

Drama | Music

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 June 1983 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

El precio de la felicidad See more »

Filming Locations:

Arlington, Texas, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$46,977, 6 March 1983

Gross USA:

$8,443,124

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$8,443,124
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The picture of the younger Mac Sledge (Robert Duvall), at which he looks, when he's backstage at his ex-wife's show, is a production still of Duvall from Joe Kidd (1972). See more »

Goofs

In the final scenes, Sonny is shown with empty farmland behind him, then after a cut to a wider shot, suddenly the gas station and motel are behind him. See more »

Quotes

Mac Sledge: [to Rosa Lee] I don't know why I wandered out to this part of Texas drunk, and you took me in and pitied me and helped me to straighten out, marry me. Why? Why did that happen? Is there a reason that happened? And Sonny's daddy died in the war, my daughter killed in an automobile accident. Why? See, I don't trust happiness. I never did, I never will.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Oscar's Greatest Moments (1992) See more »

Soundtracks

The Best Bedroom in Town
Written by Charlie Craig
Sung by Betty Buckley
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Laid back movie with a surprising emotional impact
21 October 1998 | by DrJoTabSee all my reviews

This is a great, great film. Robert Duvall richly deserved the Oscar he won for Best Actor, and Bruce Beresford's direction is quirky but consistently entertaining.

The most wonderful aspect of this movie is how the screenwriter (Horton Foote) doesn't let the characters engage in all the obvious, "Hollywood" histrionics that the plot would allow them to do. For example: when Mack (Duvall) finally meets his long-lost daughter late in the film, he doesn't run to her and embrace her with tears staining his face while music swells beneath the scene, as a hack director would have him do. Instead, he looks at his shoes, makes small talk, and acts embarrassed. Why? Because, consistently throughout the film, he doesn't believe he deserves the good things that come his way.

This is the tale of a man who, in the absolute pit of despair and hopelessness, is saved by the love of a good woman and the love of God. You need to see it.


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