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Always (1989)

tomatometer

No Score Yet...

Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 3
Fresh: 1 | Rotten: 2

audience

62

liked it
Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 22,371

My Rating

Movie Info

For all its state-of-the-art special effects, Always is essentially a remake of the 1943 Spencer Tracy-Irene Dunne fantasy vehicle A Guy Named Joe--minus the wartime context. Richard Dreyfuss stars as a reckless fire-fighting pilot who is killed in what was to have been his final mission. Ascending to Heaven, Dreyfuss is introduced to businesslike angel Audrey Hepburn (playing the equivalent of the Lionel Barrymore role in A Guy Named Joe). Hepburn instructs the spectral Dreyfuss to pass on his

Jul 20, 1999

MCA Universal Home Video

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All Critics (28) | Top Critics (8) | Fresh (14) | Rotten (8) | DVD (3)

Although Always is filled with big, sentimental moments, it lacks the intimacy to make any of this very moving.

May 20, 2003 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The result is a curiosity: a remake that wasn't remade enough.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

An unfulfilled promise, a plummeting dove.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

For all its Spielbergian action and production values, the film is painfully sappy and wastes its A-list cast by saddling them with a hamfisted script.

May 6, 2006 Full Review Source: Filmcritic.com
Filmcritic.com

Whimsical and affecting enough, but certainly a lesser Spielberg film.

May 19, 2005
Capital Times (Madison, WI)

Boring supernatural romance. Tedius and obvious. Wait until the following year's Ghost.

July 14, 2003
About.com

A light, enjoyable piece of fluff with spectacular flying scenes and a dramatically flat story.

March 16, 2003 Full Review Source: Laramie Movie Scope
Laramie Movie Scope

Always may be starry-eyed romantic claptrap, but by God, would that all starry-eyed romantic claptrap were so well done.

November 7, 2002 Full Review Source: Netflix
Netflix

A touching, beautifully short romance

September 17, 2002
Moviehole

Spielberg sets his whimsical romance ray for stun ... and comes up with a solid double off the wall.

July 25, 2002
eFilmCritic.com

A rousing adventure story, a romantic comedy, and an affecting afterlife fantasy.

January 15, 2002 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

The story, which was set during World War II in the original film, has been updated and placed in modern times. And that's part of the problem.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Deseret News, Salt Lake City
Deseret News, Salt Lake City

Audience Reviews for Always

You can see where Spielberg got his inspiration from, classics like A Guy named Joe and A Matter Of Life And Death spring to mind. Great films probably ready for a reprisal at that point but unfortunately it is Spielberg's heavy handedness that really takes away a lot of the enjoyment. It's so sentimental and sickly sweet that you actually give up caring. It's as if the aim to entertain was forgotten in the ambition to pull at the heartstrings, I wonder if this was intended as Oscar fodder following The Color Purple and Empire of the Sun missing out both times. The effects are good and the characters are likable but the script and story are just pap. Spielberg hasn't quite learn't his lesson I feel.
December 16, 2013
SirPant

Super Reviewer

Undeservedly somewhat forgotten Spielberg film that still has many wonders to offer, telling a great love story from beyond the grave. The great director's trademarks are there. Hints of the adventure film, great cinematography and just this certain feeling 1980s films can give you, maybe for the last time in a Spielberg film right here. Maybe a tad sappy at times, but with quite a few really memorable and touching scenes.
April 29, 2013
ironclad1609

Super Reviewer

This is Spielberg at his most Capra-esque. This is perhaps Spielberg's least well known feature, but that is, perhaps, because it's unfortunately not all that memorable.

As far as story goes, it is, in broad terms, Ghost a year before it came out. An aerial firefighter dies saving his best friend, but has to help his friends and lover move on before he can cross over. Very sentimental fantasy type stuff, but it is Spielberg, after all.

The film is a bit too long, and the script could be more compelling, but I actually liked this film (for the most part), which is why it's close to a pass, even if it doesn't quite earn it. Maybe I'm being kind because perhaps Spielberg was just in a rut between a good film (Empire of the Sun) and a great one (Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade).

The film has okay music (though it doesn't really stand out), a decent cast with good performances, and some pretty good work where the special effects, cinematography, and execution of the aerial stuff is concerned. This film is notable for being Audrey Hepburn's last screen appearance, and, while it is nice to see her, she deserved to go out in something a tad better.

This is lesser Spielberg, but it still has it's merits. Maybe you should be like me and give it a chance. Maybe this film isn't all that bad, but just needs a little love.
July 27, 2011
cosmo313
Chris Weber

Super Reviewer

While there are some really fun moments, Always feels like about 3 different movies mashed together. The first twenty five minutes are really enjoyable and then it starts to wander around it's story and never gets back on it's feet.
January 21, 2011
kenstachnik

Super Reviewer

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