Chilly Scenes of Winter (film)

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Chilly Scenes of Winter
Chilly Scenes of Winter.jpg
Directed by Joan Micklin Silver
Produced by Mark Metcalf
Amy Robinson
Griffin Dunne
Written by Joan Micklin Silver
Based on Chilly Scenes of Winter
by Ann Beattie
Starring John Heard
Mary Beth Hurt
Peter Riegert
Music by Ken Lauber
Cinematography Bobby Byrne
Edited by Cynthia Scheider
Distributed by United Artists
Release date
  • 1979 (1979)
Running time
92 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $3 million
Box office $40 million

Chilly Scenes of Winter (originally released as Head over Heels) is a 1979 romantic comedy film, written and directed by Joan Micklin Silver.

The film is an adaptation of the 1976 novel Chilly Scenes of Winter by Ann Beattie.

Name change[edit]

The first version of the film, with the title Head over Heels, had a happy ending. In 1982, the distributor re-released it with a new melancholy ending and the title was changed to match the book.[1] The film had a more successful run this time.[2]

Plot[edit]

Charles Richardson is a civil servant in his early 30s, working in the Department of Development, Salt Lake City, Utah, and an impetuous romantic. One day he meets Laura Conley in the filing department of his office and it is love at first sight.

Laura is a married woman who has just moved out on her husband Ox, a log home salesman. She is disillusioned by her own marriage and wants to find herself. Charles gathers his courage and asks her out. Soon, she moves in with him and seems happy, but starts having second thoughts. According to Laura, he loves her too much. "You have this exalted view of me, and I hate it. If you think I'm that great then there must be something wrong with you."

Laura leaves Charles and goes back to her husband, Ox. Sam, recently unemployed as a jacket salesman, moves in with Charles, who tries to grapple with the loss of Laura. Charles's mother, meanwhile, is an eccentric who has suicidal thoughts.

Charles begins to make efforts to win Laura back. Charles finds out from his secretary, Betty, that Laura has left Ox once again and is living in an apartment with a roommate. Charles confronts Laura, finally asking her to decide if they will have a future together. Will this be another Chilly Scene of Winter?

Cast[edit]

Reception[edit]

Reviewing the original version, Vincent Canby of The New York Times describes the film as "seeming to be on the verge of some revelation of profound feeling that, at long last, never comes." He does give high praise to the acting, writing, "there's not a false performance in the film."[3] Leonard Maltin determines the film is divisive—"it will either charm or annoy" the viewer. He awards it two and a half stars, presumably the original version.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ How 'Chilly Scenes' Was Rescued NY Times, October 10, 1982
  2. ^ Turner Classic Movies, Cult Movies Showcase
  3. ^ Canby, Vincent (1979-10-19). "Screen: 'Head Over Heels,' Drama, Opens:Bachelor in Love". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-05-07. 
  4. ^ Maltin, Leonard (2009), p. 593. Leonard Maltin's Movie Guide. ISBN 1-101-10660-3. Signet Books. Accessed May 7, 2012

External links[edit]