|Directed by||Steven Kampmann
William Porter (as Will Aldis)
|Produced by||Chana Ben-Dov
|Written by||Steven Kampmann
William Porter (as Will Aldis)
|Music by||David Foster|
|Edited by||Antony Gibbs|
|Distributed by||Warner Bros.|
|August 26, 1988|
Stealing Home is a 1988 American romantic drama movie, starring Mark Harmon and Jodie Foster with Jonathan Silverman, Harold Ramis and William McNamara in major roles. The film was directed by Steven Kampmann and William Porter (the latter billed as Will Aldis).
Billy Wyatt (Harmon) was once a very talented high school baseball player and minor-league prospect. Now in his 30s, doing poorly financially and socially, he receives a telephone call from his mother revealing that Katie Chandler (Foster), his former child-sitter—and later, in his teens, his first love—has committed suicide. She has left a note specifying Billy as custodian of her ashes.
This immediately elicits wonderful and painful memories of the times Billy spent with her, as well as of his own childhood, especially with his father Sam Wyatt (John Shea) with whom he had a very affectionate relationship, and with best friend Alan Appleby (Silverman), with whom he had a great friendship full of adventure, challenge and more.
The memories become the story, going back to Billy's pre-teen time with Katie as his child-sitter (Katie was in her late teens at the time), and with his father; then to his teens, both before and after his father died in a car accident. Billy and Katie shared a brief time of love together and Katie was immensely helpful to him after his father died. She then moved out of the country to be with a man she loved, which was the last time he saw her.
Billy, in the present, struggles to know what to do with Katie's ashes. He searches his memories for answers, and finds Alan Appleby (Ramis) after many years of having lost touch. They embark on new adventures as adults until the answer finally comes to Billy. He remembers Katie spoke of something long ago from her own early childhood: a horse in Atlantic City, forced to run full speed down the boardwalk and off the edge into the water. Remembering that she wished on that day that she could fly to a faraway land to find happiness, Billy spreads her ashes into the air off the edge of that same pier. Afterward, he rekindles old relationships and returns to a life of baseball by joining a minor league baseball team.
- Jodie Foster as Katie Chandler
- Mark Harmon as Billy Wyatt
- Harold Ramis as adult Alan Appleby
- Blair Brown as Ginny Wyatt
- Jonathan Silverman as Teenage Alan Appleby
- William McNamara as Teenage Billy Wyatt
- Richard Jenkins as Hank Chandler
- John Shea as Sam Wyatt
- Christine Jones as Grace Chandler
- Ted Ross as Bud Scott
- Helen Hunt as Hope Wyatt
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- The house that Billy grows up in is located in Chestnut Hill, Pennsylvania, where exterior scenes were shot;
- The interiors of Billy's childhood home were filmed in a house located in Springfield, Pennsylvania;
- The scenes in Bob's Diner were filmed at Ridge Avenue in Roxborough;
- Alan Appleby's sporting goods store was located on Germantown Avenue in Chestnut Hill, Pennsylvania;
- Carlton Academy is actually Chestnut Hill Academy;
- The opening scene and closing scene were shot at Fiscalini Field in San Bernardino, CA. The team he was shown playing for in the movie was the name of the actual team that played there at the time, The San Bernardino Spirit.
- Camp Tecumseh, boys summer sports camp t-shirt is seen in the movie.
The film received negative reviews around the time of its release. In her review for the New York Times, Janet Maslin wrote, "The era is simply established as a dreamily idyllic past, thanks to sand dunes at twilight, waves that crash in the distance, shiny red convertibles without seat belts and a musical score that may make you want to weep, for all the wrong reasons". Rita Kempley, in her review for the Washington Post described the film as a "pale comedy-drama by mediocrities Steven Kampmann and Will Aldis. Admittedly a pastiche of their memories, the movie bespeaks the dust of '60s yearbooks and greeting card sentiment. Of course, that stuff can be touching (Summer of '42) or quirky (Gregory's Girl), but here only allergy sufferers will leave with soggy Kleenex". In his one-star review for the Chicago Sun-Times, Roger Ebert wrote, "I detested Stealing Home so much, from beginning to end, that I left the screening wondering if any movie could possibly be that bad". The movie currently holds a 22% Critics rating and a 78% Audience rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
When asked about the film in 2006, Mark Harmon said, "That was about a bunch of actors loving a script, going there and burning it on both ends for five weeks just to get it done. That was a fun one to make. I hear a lot about that role. People really found that movie on video."
- Maslin, Janet (August 26, 1988). "Growing Up, and Into Baseball". New York Times. Retrieved 2008-04-16.
- Kempley, Rita (August 26, 1988). "Stealing Home". Washington Post. Retrieved 2008-04-16.
- Ebert, Roger (August 26, 1988). "Stealing Home". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved 2008-04-16.
- Rice, Lynette (February 22, 2006). "Making His Mark". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2008-04-16.