I Never Sang for My Father (1970)

I Never Sang for My Father (1970)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

I Never Sang for My Father Photos

Movie Info

Based on the play by Robert Anderson, I Never Sang for My Father is devoted to the prickly relationship between aged Tom Garrison (Melvyn Douglas) and his grown son Gene (Gene Hackman). A college professor who feels that he has never been fully accepted by his self-made dad, Gene announces that he is going to move from New York to marry a California divorcee. His mother (Dorothy Stickney) approves of the union but worries that her son's move will have a negative effect on the increasingly truculent Tom. When his mother dies just before the wedding, Gene is forced to help his father through his dark days. His sister (Estelle Parsons) urges her brother to break the ties for good and all--or else he'll wind up as bitter and withdrawn as their father. Gene realizes the wisdom of these words when he tries to reach out to his father during a vulnerable moment, only to have the crabby Tom tell him to get lost and leave him alone.
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Sony Pictures Entertainment

Watch it now


Melvyn Douglas
as Tom Garrison
Gene Hackman
as Gene Garrison
Dorothy Stickney
as Margaret Garrison
Daniel Keyes
as Dr. Mayberry
Conrad Bain
as Rev. Pell
Jon Richards
as Marvin Scott
Nikki Counselman
as Waitress
Carol Peterson
as 1st Nurse
Sloane Shelton
as 2nd Nurse
James Karen
as Mr. Tucker, Old Age Home Director
Jean Dexter
as Hostess
Beverly Penberthy
as Special Nurse
Valerie Ogden
as 3rd Nurse
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for I Never Sang for My Father

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (1)

Penned by Robert (Tea and Sympathy) Anderson, this father-son medlodrama is superbly acted by Melvyn Douglas and Gene Hackman, both Oscar-nominated for their turns.

Full Review… | April 23, 2012

Quote not available.

October 9, 2005
Fantastica Daily

Quote not available.

August 7, 2005
Quad City Times (Davenport, IA)

Quote not available.

Full Review… | October 23, 2004
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Quote not available.

February 8, 2004
Worcester Telegram & Gazette

Quote not available.

August 22, 2003
Las Vegas Review-Journal

Audience Reviews for I Never Sang for My Father

Very good early Hackman and he and Douglas spar nicely. Another story of intergenerational conflict and misunderstanding appropriately executed by the performers.

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer

# 2 Best Father/Son movie of all time. An uncharacteristically quiet role for Gene Hackman, but a good one!

Warren Windrem
Warren Windrem

Melvyn Douglas and Gene Hackman both give strong performances in this drama about a commanding father and a dutiful son who searches for his father's love. Gritty and emotional, both actors received Academy Award nominations and rightly so. Worth watching.

Scott Staup
Scott Staup

I Never Sang for My Father Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

Discussion Forum

Discuss I Never Sang for My Father on our Movie forum!

News & Features