Dreamer (1979 film)
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Noel Nosseck|
|Produced by||Mike Lobell|
|Written by||James Proctor|
Richard B. Shull
|Music by||Bill Conti|
|Edited by||Fred Chulack|
|Distributed by||20th Century Fox|
Dreamer is a film that was released theatrically on April 27, 1979. It was directed by Noel Nosseck, written by Larry Bischof and James Proctor, and starring Tim Matheson, Susan Blakely and Jack Warden. Dreamer was released by 20th Century Fox through Magnetic Video on home video.
A young man dreams and struggles to become a championship bowler, knowing that determination and sacrifice must come first.
Tim Matheson is the Dreamer in this story which many saw as heavily inspired by Rocky. "Dreamer" is a ten-pin whiz in his small town of Alton, Illinois, but wants to make it in the big time on the professional tour. Ultimately, he does, with the help of irascible manager Harry (Jack Warden) and faithful girlfriend Karen (Susan Blakely). As if to underline the resemblances between Dreamer and its cinematic role model, the musical score is by Rocky's Bill Conti.
- Tim Matheson as Harold "Dreamer" Nuttingham
- Susan Blakely as Karen Lee
- Jack Warden as Harry White
- Richard B. Shull as George Taylor
- Barbara Stuart as Angie
- Owen Bush as The Fan
- John Crawford as Riverboat Captain
- Marya Small as Elaine
- Matt Clark as Spider
- Morgan Farley as Old Timer
- Pedro Gonzalez Gonzalez as Too
- Speedy Zapata as Juan
- JoBe Cerny as Ralph Patterson
- Azizi Johari as Lady
- Dick Weber as Johnny Watkin
- Chris Schenkel as Himself
- Nelson Burton, Jr. as Color Man
- Julian Byrd as Red Harper
- Rita Ascot Boyd as Grandma
Tim Matheson had not bowled since the age of 10 when he got the starring role. To prepare for his part he spent four to six hours a day for two weeks bowling with Dick Weber's son Rich and also studied videotapes of top bowlers such as Mark Roth, Earl Anthony and Marshall Holman. Principal photography took place in Alton, Illinois and St. Louis from July 31 to September 12, 1978. The picture's production budget was reported at $2.9 million plus $3.54 million for marketing.
Janet Maslin of The New York Times stated, "I'm not sure I've ever seen a movie that was supposed to tell a story and managed to be as uneventful as 'Dreamer'." Roger Ebert gave the film 1.5 stars out of 4 and wrote, "There could no doubt be a good movie made about bowling or about the human elements in any professional sport. But 'Dreamer' doesn't even try to do that. It just takes a routine old formula, one that could apply as well (or as badly) to any sport from soccer to wrestling, and plugs in bowling as the subject matter." Gene Siskel of the Chicago Tribune also awarded 1.5 stars out of 4 and called it "hopelessly predictable." Variety wrote, "Shamelessly attempting to be a 'Rocky' of the bowling world, 'Dreamer' is a preposterous, colorless down-home fantasy about a youth who makes the jump from unknown bushleaguer to national champion in three easy lessons." Kevin Thomas of the Los Angeles Times declared the film "a nice little movie" and "a pleasant piece of Midwestern Americana, refreshing in its lack of gratuitous sex and gore but also likely to be too mild for some tastes." Gary Arnold of The Washington Post called it "a pleasant, inconsequential sports melodrama."
- "Dreamer - History". AFI Catalog of Feature Films. American Film Institute. Retrieved February 2, 2019.
- Maslin, Janet (June 8, 1979). "Dreamer (1979) Film: 'Dreamer' Bowls for Rainbows:Alley Style". The New York Times.
- Archibald, John J. (September 19, 1978). "'Dreamer': Up Their Alley". Los Angeles Times. Part IV, p. 9.
- Ebert, Roger (April 30, 1979). "Dreamer". RogerEbert.com. Retrieved February 2, 2019.
- Siskel, Gene (April 30, 1979). "'Dreamer' throws too many empty frames to score hit". Chicago Tribune. Section 2, p. 4.
- "Film Reviews: Dreamer". Variety. April 25, 1979. 18.
- Thomas, Kevin (April 23, 1979). "'Dreamer' Familiar but Likable Fare". Los Angeles Times. Part IV, p. 17.
- Arnold, Gary (May 22, 1979). "Fitful 'Dreamer'". The Washington Post. C7.