The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter Reviews

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October 11, 2017
A film that had a great impact on me when I saw it as a teenager. It was unimaginable to me then that people could be so callous. Alan Arkin is unforgettable as a deaf man whose love for his institutionalized friend is inspirational. But the reactions of the people around him were dispicable. The book by Carson McCullers was written when she was 23.
September 30, 2016
I am doubtful? That this is the movie I remember watching?
January 21, 2016
Amazing performance by Alan Arkin as a deaf mute. Sondra Locke's first film and she delivers . Stacey Keach , Cicily Tyson and Chuck McCann are all wonderful.
½ August 25, 2015
Great drama about being mute and still making a difference in many people's lives.
½ August 21, 2015
Seeing again after many years. Fabulous performance by Alan Arkan
August 21, 2015
gr8 performances r the reason 2 watch this one
April 13, 2015
Starring Alan Arkin, Sondra Locke, Chuck McCann and Cicely Tyson. Heartbreaking story of deaf man John Singer (Arkin) who moves from his small hometown to be near his institutionalized friend McCann. He moves in with family of teenager Locke, and slowly endears himself to everyone he meets. Arkin is incredibly moving in the role that brought him his second Oscar nomination.
April 1, 2015
I remember when I was 10 years old in 1977, and this film made its television debut on NBC. My parents and I were looking through the TV Guide for something to watch the night it premiered, and you couldn't tell much from the description in the "Guide", but it looked like the best thing to watch that particular evening...I didn't know it at the time, but it was an evening that would forever change my life.

I had never seen a film more moving nor a performance more outstanding (by Alan Arkin) in all my life. To this day, it remains my favorite film of all time.

I also loved the score by Dave ("David" when the film was made in 1968) Grusin. I decided that very night what I wanted to be when I grew up...a film composer, and indeed I did. I never lost sight of that dream, and had the distinct pleasure of meeting Mr. Grusin when I attended Berklee College of Music after I left high school in the mid '80s...I told him how much his score and this film had changed my life, and that it was my favorite of all his scores...He was very kind and told me that it was his favorite too.

I also remember writing to Alan Arkin after having had such a moving experience with "Heart"...It was back in the days when you could go to the back of a comic book or whatever, and see ads where, for just $1.99, you could purchase a book of the real addresses of the stars (not just c/o Warner Bros, etc)...So I got Mr Arkin's address, and wrote to him telling how much I loved his performance in "Heart"...A couple of weeks later, he actually wrote back to me, and thanked me very much for my interest in his film.

One thing I remember being interesting. I had already seen the NBC network premier of "Heart", and always kept watch in the TV Guide for a re-run...It just so happened that I saw where the film was going to be playing again on some particular night, and was greatly looking forward to seeing "My Favorite Film" once again...It also just so happened , though, that it was on the same night that "Star Wars" was premiering at our local cinema, and my parents wanted to go see that, and they couldn't, at 10 years old, leave me home alone...I remember reluctantly going with them...The line was way around the block for "Star Wars", and once we got in, the place was packed to capacity and they had to actually turn people away.

I never despised a movie more in my life. After sitting through about the first 20 minutes of this sci-fi /fantasy junk, I starting almost YELLING at my parents to take me home to see my favorite movie of all time!!...I'm sure I was the only kid in that theater, or ANY theater for that matter, to rather be home watching a drama about a deaf mute than seeing the premier of "Star Wars"!!...I don't remember how I managed to sit through "Wars", but to my recollection, I MUST have somehow because I remember my parents wouldn't take me home to see "Heart"...(Man, if only we had VCRs in 1977, I would have been all set)!!!...But at least today, we can actually OWN movies and watch them whenever we want in the privacy of our own homes!! So now, I have a home theater in the living room of my apartment with several copies of "The Heart is a Lonely Hunter" DVD displayed, along with Dave Grusin's soundtrack on CD...and I'm in heaven...just like back in 1977.

By the way, I have NEVER owned a copy of "Star Wars"...LOL !!

½ February 8, 2015
A great movie for all time to see - very powerfull and fantastic scenes
½ January 21, 2015
I don't think this has aged well, though I can picture it having had more impact in its original release. The movie never feels fully formed, or congeals into a strong narrative. It just sort of rambles along, but none of the characters are that interesting or finely drawn as to where that sort of character piece film is really called for. Alan Arkin is fine but it's hard to picture his winning the Oscar for acting other than for the reason that the Academy has always loved that sort of thing.
October 16, 2013
Brilliant timeless classic. They don't make movies like this anymore.
October 10, 2013
A beautiful acted photoplay that will endear the heart as you watch a few odd lives interact. Soft music add to the humor as certain situations including American racism pop up in the most shocking scenes because of there subtlety. Of the style of a 1950s production so has a historical feel making the movie hard to place. Photography tends to be rather flat. Nibbles: Chicken wing bucket.
Super Reviewer
October 9, 2013
Gorgeous film and an outstanding performance by Chuck McCann. The performances remain with you long after viewing.
½ March 16, 2013
I couldn't stand to watch this movie after reading the book. The book is spectacular, real, and beautifully composed, while the movie was awkward and lacked respect to the book and Carson McCullers. While watching the first 5 minutes of the movie, I noticed at least 12 events/characters that did not appear in the book or where completely different from the book. As a movie, I expect there to be some errors, but this movie has far too many. I would have loved to see a movie that payed some respect to the author. On a side note, I will say Alan Arkin was amazing, but Sondra Locke was not the right choice to play Mick.
½ November 23, 2012
It's cool to think there was once a time when big studios would make small offbeat films like this. Now it seems that it's pretty much left to independent filmmakers to get these types of stories on film. It's a sentimental story about the growing relationship between a deaf-mute man, Arkin, and teenage tomboy, Locke, who lives in the house where he rents a room. The film meanders at times, but overall it's a film well worth watching.
November 11, 2012
An emotional roller coaster ride which touches on many difficult themes from racial discrimination to loneliness and alcoholism that teaches lessons about the unbearable lightness of being. Alan Arkin plays the difficult role of the deaf mute man masterfully.
½ November 5, 2012
Watched this again recently - a beautiful story that reminds me why I love Alan Arkin (he plays a character who is both deaf and mute). Overall, an excellent movie, but the ending was a complete upset..
Super Reviewer
October 9, 2012
What an emotional roller coast ride ... I am always in awe of films that manage capture the beauty and tragedy of the nature of life in equal measures, making us want to live life to its fullest while being aware of the frail nature of all things that surround us, hold us together and make us get up in the morning and keep us awake at night. The performances are incredible and kudos goes out to the casting director for choosing the perfect actors and actresses without keeping one eye out on the Hollywood league and its ever-numbing lust for superficial beauty and style.

A fantastic film ... a true masterpiece.
October 7, 2012
This movie reminds me of Tennessee Williams plays taking place in the south with a solid storyline involving a poor famiy forced to take in a deaf mute boarder to help meet expenses, a teen girl with growing pains, and racial tensions wiven throughout. Alan Arkin plays the deaf mute believably well with a big heart and constantly drawn into surrounding drama. Sondra Locke is excellent as the pained teen. Sensitive portrayals.
July 6, 2012
My favorite all-time film. Absolutely astonishing.
Great acting, great story but sad as reality tv's reality...
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