Roommates (1995 film)

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Promotional poster
Directed by Peter Yates
Produced by Ted Field
Robert W. Cort
Scott Kroopf
Screenplay by Max Apple
Stephen Metcalfe
Story by Max Apple
Music by Elmer Bernstein
Cinematography Mike Southon
Edited by Seth Flaum
John Tintori
Distributed by Buena Vista Pictures
Release date
March 3, 1995 (1995-03-03)
Running time
108 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $22 million
Box office $12,096,881

Roommates is a 1995 American comedy-drama film, starring Peter Falk, D.B. Sweeney and Julianne Moore, directed by Peter Yates. The original music score was composed by Elmer Bernstein. The film was marketed with the tagline "Some people talk. Some people listen. When you're 107 and going strong, you do whatever you want."

Filming details[edit]

It was filmed in and around Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, including in the Cathedral of Learning at the University of Pittsburgh.[1] Several scenes were filmed on the campus of Washington & Jefferson College in Washington, Pennsylvania, including scenes near the Admissions House, the Dieter-Porter Life Science Building, and Old Main.[2][3]

The aging of Rocky (the Peter Falk character) through creative make-up earned the picture an Academy Award nomination.


In 1963 Pittsburgh, Rocky Holzcek is a cantankerous 77-year-old Polish-American baker who insists, despite relatives' protests, upon adopting his young grandson Michael when the boy's parents pass away. Twenty years later, Michael is a medical student in Columbus who's forced to take his still-spry grandfather when the old man is evicted from his apartment building. Although the crusty, outspoken Rocky gets along with his Chinese college roommates, he is less enthused about his grandson's girlfriend, Beth. Eventually, Michael and Beth marry and head to Pittsburgh where Michael begins his medical residency, while Rocky continues working as a baker. An illness forces Rocky to move back to Pittsburgh with his grandson and his wife, and Rocky warms up to Beth. Seven years pass, and Rocky lives with Michael and Beth and their two children, as Michael has built himself a prominent medical career. However, when Beth is killed in an automobile accident, the old man once again comes to support his grandson in his time of need. At the end of the film, Rocky dies at the age of 107, knowing that his grandson is well, and that he has provided all the care that he could for him.

Main cast[edit]

Actor Role
Peter Falk Rocky Holzeck
D. B. Sweeney Michael Holzcek
Julianne Moore Beth Holzeck
Ellen Burstyn Judith
Jan Rubes Bolek Krupa
Ernie Sabella Stash
John Cunningham Burt Shook
Frankie Faison Professor Martin
Raymond K. Wong Deng
William H. Macy Doctor (uncredited cameo)


Roommates received negative reviews from critics, as it holds a 29% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.


The film was nominated for the Best Make-up Academy Award (Greg Cannom, Robert Laden, Colleen Callaghan), and was nominated for the Best Young Actress Award, Young Artist Awards (Courtney Chase).

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Steele, Bruce (March 8, 2001). "Lights-camera-action: "Mothman" invades Pitt campus". 33 (13). University Times. Retrieved February 5, 2013. 
  2. ^ "W&J Up Close" (PDF). W&J Magazine. Washington & Jefferson College. Winter 2004. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2008-04-09. Retrieved 2010-04-19. 
  3. ^ "On Location". Observer-Reporter. Washington, Pennsylvania. September 19, 1993. Retrieved August 27, 2012.