Howard Zieff directed this comedy-drama about the emotional awakening of a young girl in a small Pennsylvania town during the summer of 1972. Anna Chlumsky plays eleven-year-old Vada, a quiet child living with her widowed father Harry Dultenfuss (Dan Aykroyd), a local mortician who prepares bodies in his basement. Vada feels responsible for the death of her mother, who died giving birth to her, and lives in an emotional cocoon, her only friend being a personable local boy, Thomas J. Sennett (Macauly Culkin), who suffers from allergies. Like Vada, Harry keeps to himself, until a freelance make-up artist, Shelly DeVoto (Jamie Lee Curtis), comes to town and gets a job working with Harry. Shelly and Harry fall in love and Vada feels threatened by her presence. But then a personal tragedy forces Vada to come out of her emotional shell.
Commentary with writer Laurice Elehwany
A day on the set: First kiss & bingo!
Original behind-the-scenes featurette
Macaulay CulkinThomas J. Sennett
Anna ChlumskyVada Sultenfuss
Dan AykroydHarry Sultenfuss
Jamie Lee CurtisShelly DeVoto
Richard MasurPhil Sultenfuss
Griffin DunneMr. Bixler
Ann NelsonGramoo Sultenfuss
Peter Michael GoetzDr. Welty
Jane HallarenNurse Randall
Anthony R. JonesArthur
Jodie WilsonMrs. Hunsaker
Nancy L. ChlumskyJackie
Glenda ChismThomas J.'s Mother
Bill CordellThomas J.'s Father
Harvey BellmanBingo Announcer
Anthony GiaimoCarnival Barker
Edgar Allan Poe IVCarnival Barker
James Newton HowardComposer (Music Score)
Wendy Greene BricmontEditor
Joseph T. GarrityProduction Designer
Pat TagliaferroArt Director
David T. FriendlyExecutive Producer
Karen PatchCostume Designer
Steve AaronSound/Sound Designer
Jeff MoldovanStunts Coordinator
Year of Release
Blu-ray, Includes Digital Copy
English, French, German, Italian, Spanish
Arabic, Bulgarian, Czech, Danish, English, Finnish, French
I have loved this movie ever since it first came out . I feel so sorry for Beta as she is raised in a funeral home . Hard for her to handle. And to boot she loses her best friend to death . A most watch movie for the whole family .
THIS REVIEW IS FOR THE NEWER RELEASE OF THE FILM HAS A COMPLETELY DIFFERENT SHOT ON THE FRONT OF DVD
I have always enjoyed this film.
Time frame when I was a kid.
Nice to remember when things were better & people were happier.
The music & the pop culture references are good to see.
Dan following up after his Oscar nomination for "Driving Miss Daisy" is good as Harry. The last time I can remember seeing Jamie Lee with a good hair cut, meaning looking like a woman instead of that man's hair cut she has had for years.
Culkin near the end of his 15 minutes. Introducing & this was her career the 2 films Anna Chlumsky.
Since a low price DVD NO chapter search list.
The 1 big complaint I have is the film is NOT wide screen. Why not film makers? You are selling the early 1970's time frame so why not show it properly?