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Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore (1974)

PG | | Drama, Romance | 30 May 1975 (France)
A recently widowed woman is on the road with her precocious young son, determined to make a new life for herself as a singer.

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mia Bendixsen ...
Alice - Age 8
...
...
Tommy (as Alfred Lutter)
...
Donald
...
Bea
Ola Moore ...
Old Woman
...
Joe & Jim's Bartender
Marty Brinton ...
Lenny (as Martin Brinton)
Dean Casper ...
Chicken
Murray Moston ...
Jacobs
...
Ben
Lane Bradbury ...
Rita
...
Flo
...
Mel
...
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Storyline

Despite admitting that she was scared of him in her never-ending quest to please him, thirty-five year old housewife and mother Alice Hyatt is devastated when her husband Donald is killed in an on the job traffic accident. With few job skills except that as a singer, Alice, along with her precocious eleven year old son Tommy, decides to move from their current home in Socorro, New Mexico to her home town of Monterrey, California, the only place she has ever felt happy. She plans on getting singing gigs along the way to earn money to get back to Monterrey by the end of the summer and the start of Tommy's school year. Alice's quest for a job at each stop leaves Tommy often to fend for himself, which may make Tommy even more precocious. His behavior is fostered by Alice, as their relationship is often more as trouble-making friends than mother and son. Alice's plans often do not end up as she envisions, especially as she is forced to take a waitressing job at Mel and Ruby's Diner in ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Alice has a 12-year old kid. She hasn't got a job and she's on her own. How come she has such a good time? See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

30 May 1975 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Alicia ya no vive aquí  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,800,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$17,600,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Martin Scorsese felt that editing down the movie from more than three hours to less than two made the story very simplistic, whereas the longer version "was quite three-dimensional." See more »

Goofs

Tommy says the A7 chord hurts his fingers. A7 is one of the easiest chords, even for beginners. Kristofferson would know this and could have asked the script be altered, and recommend a more difficult chord. See more »

Quotes

Alice: I AM a singer.
See more »

Crazy Credits

introducing Alfred Lutter as Tommy See more »

Connections

Referenced in Making 'Taxi Driver' (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

Gone with the Wind
(1937)
Music by Allie Wrubel
Lyrics by Herb Magidson
Performed by Ellen Burstyn (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Burstyn Is One of the Greats
30 September 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Ellen Burstyn could play a tree stump and make it interesting. She's one of the unsung heroes of post-studio cinema. At a time when meaty women's roles were becoming more and more scarce, Burstyn was fighting for and winning one great part after another. She's probably never been better than she is here, though she showed tremendous range in "Same Time, Next Year" and gave one of the most heartbreakingly harrowing performances I've ever seen as recently as 2000, in "Requiem for a Dream." Women's picture and Martin Scorsese are not two phrases that would seem to be tailor made for each other, but a terrific women's picture is exactly what Scorsese gives us with "Alice..." Though I hate using the term women's picture, as if men can't enjoy stories about women, or as if women's pictures are isolated from the rest of "real" movies. Actually and ironically, maybe it was Scorsese's penchant for the tough-guy milieu that made him so right for this film, because "Alice" doesn't suffer from the burn-your-bra self-righteousness of other women's lib movies of its era, like "Un Unmarried Woman." These other films ultimately feel phony, because they were created for the most part by men, who, however noble their intentions, simply didn't have an understanding for the material. But Scorsese gets the character of Alice, and Burstyn knows exactly what she's doing. So the conflict isn't between Alice and the male world, but between the Alice who doesn't have the confidence to be anything other than a doormat and the Alice who wants to make a life for herself on her own terms.

There are some hilarious scenes between Alice and her son in this film, most particularly the scenes of them driving to California (like when Alice calls him Hellen Keller because he keeps asking "what?" to everything she says). Also, a subplot about the evolving friendship between Alice and Flo (played by Diane Ladd) becomes one of the film's highlights, not in the least because both actresses handle it expertly.

This is a winner, and must be seen by anyone who thinks Scorses is out of his element anywhere but the mean streets of NYC.

Grade: A


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