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Rated R · 105 minutes · 1999

Romance

Tony Goldwyn's A Walk on the Moon is a wonderfully realized, nostalgic (if you are as old as I am) melodrama set during the summer of 1969. It is a time of change across America--sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll--and a historic year in the space program, but not everything is in upheaval. Pearl Katrowitz, a thirty-year-old Brooklyn housewife (Diane Lane), is spending the summer, as she has for the last decade, at Dr. Fleigel's Bungalow Colony in the Catskills. Along with her daughter, son, and mother-in-law, she waits dutifully for her husband's weekend visits, commuting from his job in New York City. The insularity of the camp is interrupted only by calls from the traveling salesman, the "ice cream man," "the knish man," or "the dress man." On one of these occasions, Pearl meets "the blouse man," Walker (Viggo Mortensen). Both hip and sexy, he is at first just casually friendly. But it rapidly becomes evident that the undercurrent of sexual tension won't disappear, and the steamy love affair that ensues changes the lives of everyone involved. With a tone that is romantic yet very authentic, Goldwyn creates a charmingly comic but intense love story that interweaves coming of age for Pearl's newly adolescent daughter with Pearl's own trek toward self-realization. Against the backdrop of Woodstock, and with Lane's complex, yet compelling, sexuality, Goldwyn's storytelling avoids the era's easy cliches to offer a memorable and satisfying look back at the time when change was in the air.

Director: Tony Goldwyn
Writer: Pamela Gray
Producer: Dustin Hoffman and Tony Goldwyn
Cast: Diane Lane, Viggo Mortensen, Liev Schreiber, Anna Paquin and Victoria Barkoff

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