Peggy Sue Got Married
|Peggy Sue Got Married|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Francis Ford Coppola|
|Produced by||Paul R. Gurian|
|Music by||John Barry|
|Edited by||Barry Malkin|
|Distributed by||TriStar Pictures|
Peggy Sue Got Married is a 1986 American comedy-drama film directed by Francis Ford Coppola starring Kathleen Turner as a woman on the verge of a divorce, who finds herself transported back to the days of her senior year in high school in 1960. The film was written by husband and wife team Jerry Leichtling and Arlene Sarner.
The film was nominated for three Academy Awards: Best Actress (Turner), Best Cinematography, and Best Costume Design. In addition, Turner was nominated for Best Foreign Actress at the Sant Jordi Awards.
Peggy Sue Bodell sets off for her 25-year high school reunion in 1985 with her daughter, Beth, as company. Peggy has just separated from her high school sweetheart, now husband, Charlie, and is wary of attending the reunion because of everyone questioning her about his absence as they have been married since Peggy became pregnant right after graduation.
She arrives at the reunion and is happy to reconnect with her old best friends, Maddy and Carol. Charlie unexpectedly arrives at the reunion, causing an awkward scene with Peggy ignoring him. The awkwardness is ended when the event MC announces the reunion’s "king and queen." The king is Richard Norvik, a former class geek turned billionaire inventor. Peggy is named the queen and walks on stage, but after they wheel out the reunion cake, she faints.
When Peggy awakes, she finds herself back in the spring of 1960, her senior year of high school, after she passed out after donating blood in the school gym (where the reunion was). She finds all of her friends that she just left to also be their teenage selves, not just her. Still in shock, she allows herself to be taken home while she sees her surroundings are the way they were 25 years before. After a rough first night, she decides to have fun with the experience and behave as if everything is normal. However, when given the chance to break up with Charlie, she thinks it might be best since she knows how it will end.
Peggy makes friends with Richard Norvik, the class geek (and future billionaire), to figure out what is going on with her. Charlie gets jealous when she ignores him at lunch and makes arrangements to meet Richard after school to discuss time travel with him. When she tells him her secret, at first he thinks it is a joke. But, what she said about him and the world would come from someone who had knowledge about the future. Peggy has decided to break up with Charlie'; she is the only one who wants that.
One night after a party, Peggy decides to sleep with Charlie. He then flips out and reminds her that she had rebuffed him the weekend before and therefore believes she is playing games, then drives her home. Instead of going inside, she takes a walk and ends up at an all-night cafe. As she walks by, she sees Michael Fitzsimmons — the artsy loner in school she always wished she’d slept with - and goes in to talk to him. After finding out they have more in common than originally thought, they ride off on his motorcycle. In a field, they smoke weed and find out more about one another. When he asks if she is going to marry Charlie, she responds that she already did that and will not do it again. After he recites some of his poetry for her, they have sex.
Michael reveals that he wants her to go with him and another woman to Utah (where polygamy is legal) so they can marry and support him while he writes. After his revelation, she tells him he should go and to write about their night together. In the middle of their conversation, she hears a voice she recognizes singing. When she looks at the stage, she sees that it is Charlie and realizes that she did not know everything about him. Michael is upset, thinking that she declined his offer for Charlie and is ready to go. After they leave, Charlie is auditioning for a music agent and is rejected. The next day when Peggy goes to talk to Charlie, he lashes out at her and she gives him a song she "wrote" for him (which ends up being "She Loves You", by The Beatles). She then goes to Richard to say goodbye, saying she wants to stop messing up her life and everyone else's since the reason Charlie stopped singing was her becoming pregnant right before they graduated. Richard proposes, but she refuses because she does not want to marry anyone and he has to be valedictorian. Confused, she visits her grandparents for her birthday. After her grandparents tell her that her grandmother can see the future, she tells them her story. Her grandfather and his lodge friends then try a strange séance ritual to send her back to 1985.
Peggy is then kidnapped by Charlie, leaving everyone at the Lodge thinking that the ritual worked. He tells her that he told his dad that he gave up singing and was given 10% of the business so he can support her. He then proposes and gives her the locket she wore at the beginning of the film. When she looks inside, she sees baby pictures of her and Charlie, which resemble their children. Peggy sees how much he loves her and how much she loves him, and they kiss. They begin to make love, which would again lead to Peggy getting pregnant and marrying him. In the next moment, Peggy is transported back to 1985.
Peggy awakes in a hospital, with Charlie at her side. He is deeply regretful of his adultery and tells Peggy he wants her back. When she questions him about Janet, he swears it is over. It seems there is hope for a reconciling when Peggy looks at Charlie with new eyes and (citing a reference from her grandfather who claimed that her grandmother's strudel kept the family together) says, "I'd like to invite you over to your house for dinner on Sunday with your kids. I'll make a strudel."
Debra Winger was originally signed to play Peggy Sue but was forced to back out just before production began due to a back injury suffered in a bicycle accident.
Release and reception
Peggy Sue Got Married gained a positive reaction from critics, as it currently holds an 85% rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on 26 reviews.
Kathleen Turner won the 1986 award for Best Actress from the U.S. National Board of Review of Motion Pictures. The film ranked number 17 on Entertainment Weekly's list of "50 Best High School Movies".
- American Film Institute lists
The film was adapted by Leichtling and Sarner into a full-length musical theater production which opened in London's West End theatre district in 2001. Despite receiving solid reviews and a several million pound advance, 9/11 forced the show to close early.
Goodbye Mr. Loser
The 2015 Chinese comedy film Goodbye Mr. Loser has been criticized for its similarities in plot with Peggy Sue Got Married. Two weeks after its premiere, Chinese netizens started posting articles online comparing similar plot elements of the film with those from the 1986 American film. The directors of Goodbye Mr. Loser have denied the allegations of plagiarism with a statement claiming that their film is an adaptation of a theater play which was inspired by a post on a Chinese Internet forum in 2010.
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- Jim Catalano (1995). "Interview: Marshall Crenshaw". steamiron.com. Retrieved 2011-06-02.
- "''Peggy Sue Got Married'' at Box Office Mojo". Boxofficemojo.com. 1986-12-30. Retrieved 2011-05-20.
- "1986 Award Winners". National Board of Review of Motion Pictures. 2016. Retrieved October 31, 2016.
- "Entertainment Weekly's 50 Best High School Movies". Ew.com. Archived from the original on September 5, 2008. Retrieved 2011-05-20.
- "Siskel and Ebert Top Ten Lists (1969-1998)". Innermind.com. 2012-05-03. Retrieved 2014-05-14.
- "AFI's 100 Years...100 Laughs Nominees" (PDF). Retrieved 2014-05-14.
- American Film Institute. "AFI's 10 Top 10 Ballot" (PDF). Afi.com. Retrieved 2014-05-14.
- "Peggy Sue Got Married - the Musical, a CurtainUp review". Curtainup.com. Retrieved 2011-05-20.
- "《夏洛特烦恼》遭遇真烦恼 被指抄袭《教父》导演旧作" (in Chinese). China National Radio. October 17, 2015. Retrieved October 18, 2015.
- "Creators of 'Goodbye Mr. Loser' denies plagiarism claim". China.org.cn. October 16, 2015. Retrieved October 18, 2015.
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