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The Kennedys of Massachusetts 

This sweeping mini-series profiling the Kennedy family ran three nights. The film chronicles 55 years in the lives of the family opening in 1906 with the marriage of Joseph P. Kennedy, a ... See full summary »
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1  
1990  
Won 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete series cast summary:
Casey Affleck ...  Robert Kennedy - Ages 12-15 3 episodes, 1990
Cindy Baer ...  Rose's Friend - 1906 3 episodes, 1990
Deborah Bancroft Deborah Bancroft ...  Sissy Thomas 3 episodes, 1990
Paul Bronk ...  Bartender 3 episodes, 1990
Sullivan Brown Sullivan Brown ...  King George 3 episodes, 1990
Allyn Burrows Allyn Burrows ...  G.I. 3 episodes, 1990
Karen Chaffee Karen Chaffee ...  Patricia Kennedy - Ages 13-14 3 episodes, 1990
Ken Cheeseman ...  Ormsby-Gore 3 episodes, 1990
Mara Clark Mara Clark ...  Maid Ruth 3 episodes, 1990
Jordan Clarke Jordan Clarke ...  James Reedy 3 episodes, 1990
Richard Clarke Richard Clarke ...  Neville Chamberlain 3 episodes, 1990
Father Coppenrath Father Coppenrath ...  Priest 3 episodes, 1990
Joe Costa Joe Costa ...  David Sarnoff 3 episodes, 1990
Dawn Couch Dawn Couch ...  Cora 3 episodes, 1990
Michael Cumpsty ...  Billy Hartington 3 episodes, 1990
Jean De Baer Jean De Baer ...  Josie Fitzgerald 3 episodes, 1990
Jerome Dempsey ...  Joe Kane 3 episodes, 1990
Bill Devany Bill Devany ...  Saloon Patron 3 episodes, 1990
Frank Dolan Frank Dolan ...  Dr. Place 3 episodes, 1990
Bruce Donaldson Bruce Donaldson ...  Customer's Man 3 episodes, 1990
William Duff-Griffin William Duff-Griffin ...  Henry Fitzgerald 3 episodes, 1990
Matthew Dundas Matthew Dundas ...  Ted Kennedy - Ages 12-14 3 episodes, 1990
Paul Dunn Paul Dunn ...  Clark 3 episodes, 1990
Charles Durning ...  John 'Honey Fitz' Fitzgerald 3 episodes, 1990
Michael Flanagan Michael Flanagan ...  Dr. Coleman 3 episodes, 1990
Hal Fletcher Hal Fletcher ...  Earl Warren 3 episodes, 1990
Will Gardner Will Gardner ...  Robert Kennedy - Age 7 3 episodes, 1990
Edwin Gerard Edwin Gerard ...  Henri 3 episodes, 1990
Peter Gerety ...  Irish Driver 3 episodes, 1990
Thomas Gibson ...  Peter Fitzwilliam 3 episodes, 1990
Michael Goodwin ...  Joe Kennedy Jr. - Ages 11-12 3 episodes, 1990
Sam Gray Sam Gray ...  William Burke 3 episodes, 1990
Tim Halligan ...  Eddie Moore 3 episodes, 1990
Beth Herzig Beth Herzig ...  Jean Kennedy - Ages 16-20 3 episodes, 1990
Pat Hingle ...  P.J. Kennedy 3 episodes, 1990
James Huston ...  Joe Gargan 3 episodes, 1990
Venus Irving-Prescott Venus Irving-Prescott ...  Club Singer 3 episodes, 1990
David Ives David Ives ...  Headmaster 3 episodes, 1990
Keith Jochim Keith Jochim ...  Dr. Martin 3 episodes, 1990
Eddie Jones ...  Jim Fitzgerald 3 episodes, 1990
Kristen Lee Kelly Kristen Lee Kelly ...  Patricia Kennedy 3 episodes, 1990
Tom Kemp ...  Hill 3 episodes, 1990
Lily Knight Lily Knight ...  Pat Wilson 3 episodes, 1990
Pete Kovner Pete Kovner ...  Harry 3 episodes, 1990
Thomas Krajewski Thomas Krajewski ...  Jack Kennedy - Ages 9-12 3 episodes, 1990
Olek Krupa ...  Erich Von Stroheim 3 episodes, 1990
June Lion June Lion ...  Nurse 3 episodes, 1990
Jane Loranger Jane Loranger ...  Agnes Firtzgerald 3 episodes, 1990
Deirdre Lovejoy ...  Rosemary Kennedy 3 episodes, 1990
Dante Magnani Dante Magnani ...  Joe Kennedy Jr. - Ages 2-4 3 episodes, 1990
Kate Mailer Kate Mailer ...  Victoria 3 episodes, 1990
Bernie McInerney Bernie McInerney ...  Dr. Bowles 3 episodes, 1990
Randle Mell ...  Robert Kennedy 3 episodes, 1990
Chris Milberg Chris Milberg ...  Newsboy #2 3 episodes, 1990
Leah Monagle Leah Monagle ...  Eunice Fitzgerald - Age 5 3 episodes, 1990
Bill Moor Bill Moor ...  Louis Howe 3 episodes, 1990
Hubert Murray Hubert Murray ...  Secretary 3 episodes, 1990
Hugo Napier Hugo Napier ...  Butler 3 episodes, 1990
Kelsey Nichols Kelsey Nichols ...  Kathleen Kennedy - Ages 8-9 3 episodes, 1990
Remi Nichols Remi Nichols ...  Rosemary Kennedy - Ages 8-11 3 episodes, 1990
Christina Nikitas Christina Nikitas ...  Jack Kennedy - Ages 2-3 3 episodes, 1990
Annette O'Toole ...  Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy 3 episodes, 1990
Madolyn Smith Osborne ...  Gloria Swanson 3 episodes, 1990
Dossy Peabody Dossy Peabody ...  Catherine Falvey 3 episodes, 1990
William Petersen ...  Joseph P. Kennedy 3 episodes, 1990
Tracy Pollan ...  Kathleen Kennedy 3 episodes, 1990
Richard Provost Richard Provost ...  Chief Justice 3 episodes, 1990
Mathew Quinn Mathew Quinn ...  Pianist 3 episodes, 1990
Halina Radosz Halina Radosz ...  Eunice Kennedy 3 episodes, 1990
Beckett Royce Beckett Royce ...  New York Woman 3 episodes, 1990
Danielle Schonback Danielle Schonback ...  Jean Kennedy - Ages 9-12 3 episodes, 1990
Fiona Scoones Fiona Scoones ...  Young Woman 3 episodes, 1990
Campbell Scott ...  Joseph P. Kennedy Jr. 3 episodes, 1990
Ryan Shaughnessy Ryan Shaughnessy ...  Ted Kennedy - Ages 5-6 3 episodes, 1990
Josef Sommer ...  Franklin D. Roosevelt 3 episodes, 1990
Shaun Sullivan Shaun Sullivan ...  Newsboy #1 3 episodes, 1990
John Terrence John Terrence ...  Gloria's Butler 3 episodes, 1990
Brian Tierney Brian Tierney ...  Jimmy Roosevelt 3 episodes, 1990
Jennifer Walsh Jennifer Walsh ...  Rosemary Kennedy - Ages 1-4 3 episodes, 1990
Steven Weber ...  John F. Kennedy 3 episodes, 1990
Bronia Wheeler Bronia Wheeler ...  Nun 3 episodes, 1990
Bates Wilder ...  Classmate 3 episodes, 1990
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Storyline

This sweeping mini-series profiling the Kennedy family ran three nights. The film chronicles 55 years in the lives of the family opening in 1906 with the marriage of Joseph P. Kennedy, a Harvard graduate, to Rose Fitzgerald, the daughter of Boston's Mayor. The first night focuses on the marriage's troubled years and Rose's strength in developing a real family. The second night covered the years of 1928 - 1940 and Jospeh's years as working as a movie producer and then an ambassador. The final night follows the Kennedy's tragedies during World War II and follows the post war years political successes of John Kennedy. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

ADMIRE THEM, OR CONDEMN THEM - this controversial story unveils the truth behind the Kennedy Dynasty. See more »

Genres:

Drama

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 February 1990 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (5 episodes)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Doris Kearns Goodwin was once a member of Democrat American President Lyndon Baines Johnson's staff at the White House where she acted as an assistant to LBJ who was the successor to Democrat U.S. President John F. Kennedy. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Enjoyable, intelligent and even-handed
17 December 2015 | by n-moSee all my reviews

"American royalty" may not be technically correct, but such a qualifier is not wholly inappropriate when it invokes not only the notoriety but also the fascination and scrutiny to which every aspect of the lives of Joe and Rose Kennedy and their descendants have been subject. The passions they arouse are also very telling: evaluations of the Kennedys tend to fall somewhere on the scale between glorifications of a latter-day Camelot, and cynical exasperation with a band of hypocritical, womanizing, calculating "Massachusetts liberals." For all their very deep flaws, however, the Kennedy's Darwinian and cultural success does command very deep respect: there must be SOME virtuous sensibilities down there.

"The Kennedys of Massachusetts" portrays this integral picture quite well, incorporating the various strains and experiences that made Joe and Rose and their family into who they were. Central to the story is their Roman Catholic identity, to which they were both fervently attached and which they determined (and managed) to pass to their children. But the tension between Catholicism as expressed through Rose's more purely ultramontanist social, psychological and cultural mindset - which she transmitted to none of her children (Eunice a possible, partial exception) - and the ambitions of Joe to rise in WASP society are laid out here, quite skillfully. The film does not condemn Rose's staunch, sometimes brittle approach to her faith nor castigate Joe for his shirking of its finer points or of his numerous betrayals of the matrimonial covenant, but simply lays out the facts for what they are.

All the way, the grace and glamor of the Old vs. New World dynamic is undeniable. The major points in the marriage of Joe and Rose and the evolution of their children are chronicled very cohesively and convincingly. William Petersen and Annette O'Toole play their roles very well and have good chemistry; nevertheless, the scenes between O'Toole and Charles Durning (as John "Honey" Fitzgerald) steal the show, and his cynical recapping of Rose's religious and intellectual path early on turns out to a harbinger for the whole Kennedy political project. We are left at once admiring of the great accomplishments of Joe and the earnest if naïve and not wholly adroit quest for beauty on the part of Rose, if perhaps regretful that he could not have listened to her earlier: "You're a very successful and wealthy man at a young age; isn't that enough?" and spared his family so much of the agony that came as the price of their admission into Anglo-Protestant high society. (An uncharitable cynic might add, spare the U.S. of an incompetent president and an alcoholic road-unworthy senator. I'll let my readers judge for themselves.)

All the same, one ends the mini-series wanting to do something, wanting to beatify one's life. If entertainment can so inspire, perhaps it is not so indispensable as we sometimes suppose.


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