5.8/10
2,453
19 user 6 critic

Sweet Liberty (1986)

PG | | Comedy | 16 May 1986 (USA)
After selling the rights of his book to a movie production company, a writer finds himself fighting the many egos and varying views around him.

Director:

Alan Alda

Writer:

Alan Alda
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Love Field (1992)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

When a woman enrout to JFK's funeral befriends a black man's daughter, they experience numerous revelations and hardships.

Director: Jonathan Kaplan
Stars: Michelle Pfeiffer, Dennis Haysbert, Stephanie McFadden
A New Life (1988)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

After a middle-aged couple divorces, they must each enter the frightening but funny world of blind dates and new relationships.

Director: Alan Alda
Stars: Alan Alda, Ann-Margret, Hal Linden
Comedy | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Over the course of one night, a beaten down L.A. engineer accidentally meets, falls for and tries to help a beautiful jewel thief on the run from some extremely dangerous people.

Director: John Landis
Stars: Jeff Goldblum, Michelle Pfeiffer, Stacey Pickren
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Three middle-aged wealthy couples take vacations together in Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter. Along the way we are treated to mid-life, marital, parental and other crises.

Director: Alan Alda
Stars: Alan Alda, Carol Burnett, Len Cariou
Comedy | Crime | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

An undercover FBI agent falls in love with a recently widowed mafia wife, who is trying to restart her life following her husband's murder while being pursued by a libidinous mafia kingpin seeking to claim her for himself.

Director: Jonathan Demme
Stars: Michelle Pfeiffer, Alec Baldwin, Paul Lazar
Drama | Romance | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

An expatriate British publisher unexpectedly finds himself working for British intelligence to investigate people in Russia.

Director: Fred Schepisi
Stars: Sean Connery, Michelle Pfeiffer, Roy Scheider
Comedy | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

The lives of two struggling musicians, who happen to be brothers, inevitably change when they team up with a beautiful, up-and-coming singer.

Director: Steve Kloves
Stars: Jeff Bridges, Michelle Pfeiffer, Beau Bridges
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

An ambitious young woman, determined to build a career in TV journalism, gets good advice from her first boss, and they fall in love.

Director: Jon Avnet
Stars: Robert Redford, Michelle Pfeiffer, Stockard Channing
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

This vampire spoof has Count Dracula moving to New York to find his Bride, after being forced to move out of his Transylvanian castle. There with the aid of assistant Renfield, he stumbles ... See full summary »

Director: Stan Dragoti
Stars: George Hamilton, Susan Saint James, Richard Benjamin
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

Harry and Sue Lewis met in the 40es as teenagers living in the Bronx. He was an aspiring architect, she was the most beautiful girl in school, and both had a fondness for bran muffins. They... See full summary »

Director: Steven Paul
Stars: Elliott Gould, Susannah York, Michelle Pfeiffer
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

The story of hard-luck Melvin E. Dummar, who claimed to have received a will naming him an heir to the fortune of Howard Hughes.

Director: Jonathan Demme
Stars: Paul Le Mat, Jason Robards, Elizabeth Cheshire
Guilty as Sin (1993)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A female lawyer takes an accused wife-murderer as a client, but finds herself morally compelled to betray him one way or another.

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: Rebecca De Mornay, Don Johnson, Stephen Lang
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Alan Alda ... Michael Burgess
Michael Caine ... Elliott James
Michelle Pfeiffer ... Faith Healy
Bob Hoskins ... Stanley Gould
Lise Hilboldt Lise Hilboldt ... Gretchen Carlsen
Lillian Gish ... Cecelia Burgess
Saul Rubinek ... Bo Hodges
Lois Chiles ... Leslie
Linda Thorson ... Grace James
Diana Agostini ... Nurse (as Diane Agostini)
Antony Alda Antony Alda ... Film Crew Member
Alvin Alexis Alvin Alexis ... Male Student
Christopher Bregman Christopher Bregman ... Running Boy
Leo Burmester ... Hank
Cynthia Burr Cynthia Burr ... Assistant Cameraperson
Edit

Storyline

Michael has written a scholarly book on the revolutionary war. He has sold the movie rights. The arrival of the film crew seriously disrupts him as actors want to change their characters, directors want to re-stage battles, and he becomes very infatuated with Faith, who will play the female lead in the movie. At the same time, he is fighting with his crazy mother who thinks the Devil lives in her kitchen, and his girlfriend who is talking about commitment. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Michael Burgess wrote a book about the American Revolution. Now, Hollywood's come to his town to make a movie of it -- Plunging him into a summer of madness.

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 May 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Sweet Liberty - What a Liberty See more »

Edit

Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,160,891, 18 May 1986

Gross USA:

$14,205,021
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The academic subject area that Professor Michael Burgess (Alan Alda) taught was history, particularly the American Revolution. See more »

Quotes

Michael Burgess: [Stanley calls Michael and himself "The Two Musketeers"] I'm not a musketeer, I'm a historian!
See more »

Alternate Versions

In the UK, the film was cut by 2 seconds to get a "PG" for cinema release and removed one mouthed use of the word 'fuck'. The 15 rated video and 12-rated DVD releases were uncut. See more »

Connections

References Match Game (1973) See more »

Soundtracks

Hooray for Hollywood
(uncredited)
Music by Richard A. Whiting
Lyrics by Johnny Mercer
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A missed opportunity.
5 November 2008 | by TOMASBBloodhoundSee all my reviews

I had hoped to like this film a bit more than I did, and I certainly expected to laugh more. Sweet Liberty is an Alan Alda project through and through. In it, he plays a history professor whose historical novel is going to be made into a movie during one crazy summer in the little college town. Everyone is excited about the upcoming shoot, but Alda's excitement turns to disgust once the cast and crew arrive. He finally gets a look at the script and finds out that the movie will be sort of a sex comedy with little regard for historical accuracy. Alda then sets out with the screenwriter to try and convince the actors and director to film his own version. While all of this is going on, we sit through several arguments about Alda's relationship status with his girlfriend. We are also treated to the eccentricities of Alda's ancient mother played by legendary actress Lillian Gish. Overall, there is just too much going on, and the film never quite sustains any comedic momentum.

The film has some genuine strengths. The cast is an eclectic bunch of old stars, new faces, and genial nobodies. Alda and Michael Caine basically play themselves and do a very good job. Michelle Pfeiffer is not only beautiful as hell, but she also gives a strong early performance as the lead actress. Bob Hoskins' character is well-written, but he plays the man in too shrill of a manner to be taken seriously. His screenwriter character has some wonderful points to make about using flattery to get the attention of the actors and director if you want them to change what they are doing. But he is just so hyper that you cringe whenever you hear his voice. Saul Rubinek is good as the hotshot, pompous young director who is only out to show the audience three things: People defying authority, destruction of property, and people taking off their clothing. That's what industry research shows that younger audiences want, he informs Alda more than once.

There are other problems besides the annoying Hoskins character. I'm sure it would seem desirable for an icon like Lillian Gish to be included in just about any film at that time. However, her character and scenes are just not needed and end up being more of a distraction than anything else. Alda and his girlfriend have about the same argument at least half a dozen times. Another scene looks like it will give a huge laugh payoff, but it falls flat. In it, a group of stunt men are in a bar with some of the local re-creators of the Battle of Cowpens who will also be used as extras in the film. The stunt men are trying to tell the amateurs how to fall in the battle scene. One of the stunt men breaks out one of those harnesses that people use to get pulled backwards through doorways in bar fight scenes. And you think you are going to see one of the amateurs get unknowingly hooked up to it and taken for the ride of his life. But alas, they apparently thought it would be funnier for the guy just to fall down on his back like an idiot. Another missed opportunity! 5 of 10 stars.

The Hound.


3 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 19 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed