Despite admitting that she was scared of him in her never-ending quest to please him, thirty-five year old housewife and mother Alice Hyatt is devastated when her husband Donald is killed in an on the job traffic accident. With few job skills except that as a singer, Alice, along with her precocious eleven year old son Tommy, decides to move from their current home in Socorro, New Mexico to her home town of Monterrey, California, the only place she has ever felt happy. She plans on getting singing gigs along the way to earn money to get back to Monterrey by the end of the summer and the start of Tommy's school year. Alice's quest for a job at each stop leaves Tommy often to fend for himself, which may make Tommy even more precocious. His behavior is fostered by Alice, as their relationship is often more as trouble-making friends than mother and son. Alice's plans often do not end up as she envisions, especially as she is forced to take a waitressing job at Mel and Ruby's Diner in ...Written by
Ellen Burstyn was eager to work with Martin Scorsese because she liked the vibrant immediacy of Mean Streets (1973), and thought that edge could keep Alice from becoming too glib and facile, and too much of a formula "woman's picture". See more »
When Alice and Tommy first see the "Leaving New Mexico" sign, the traffic light they are approaching turns from green to yellow. Following a very brief exchange inside the still-moving car, the light is then shown to be green, and they go right through the intersection without having slowed or stopped. There was no time for the light to have gone through a full cycle. See more »
[while driving Tommy home from the police station]
Ya look like you've been embalmed.
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People forget that "ALICE DOESN'T LIVE HERE ANYMORE" is a Scorsese film. Look at it again and you'll see it is one hundred percent Scorsese. Totally focused on a female character. I read somewhere that Ellen Burstyn asked Scorsese "How well do you know women" and Scorsese replayed "Not well at all, but I'm willing to learn" The portrait of Alice adds something to film female characters that had never been present on the screen before. All those Joan Crawford fighting working class women seem like a joke compared to Ellen Burstyn's Alice. Jodie Foster steps into the screen with a funny, touching BANG. If you've never seen this film, hurry up! If you've seen it, see it again.
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