Ordinary People film matched with boring dishes reborn
Starring Donald Sutherland, Mary Tyler Moore and Timothy Hutton
– On the surface, everything is hunky dory with this run-of-the-mill family. Calvin (Sutherland) and Beth (Tyler Moore) seem to have a pretty functional relationship. They are forever smiling as they go about their daily routine. Then we meet Conrad (Hutton) who is the dark cloud in the family… and fair enough. He witnessed the tragic death of older brother Buck (Scott Doebler) who died in a boating accident. Conny then tried to commit suicide.
– Within the normality of his parent’s life he is abnormal. He has just been released from a mental institution and is struggling to go along with the sunny life his parents are presenting him with. Everything around him seems strange and meaningless compared with the torment he feels inside.
-Enter Doctor Tyrone C. Berger (Judd Hirsch). Berger is a psychiatrist who gently walks Conny through his feelings, through the night of the accident and suicide and his strained relationship with his mum. As Conrad heals, his family starts falling apart and peace no longer reigns.
On the outside this family is another ho-hum successful group of related individuals going about each day like everyone else. So I thought we’d grab some ordinary-looking recipes that are actually super-extraordiary and who else to go to for these except Heston Blumenthal. So here are a few of this amazing chef’s recipes for you to try with this movie. First turn boring old hot chips or fries into something special with Heston’s Triple Cooked Chips recipe from SBS. Looking good!
Grab your tissues and prepare your heartstrings to be torn, this is one sad film. Like Kramer Vs Kramer, this movie is all about family breakdown, only this time it involves a death. It’s a great story because it feels real, we can all relate to it because all of us wear masks at times which are painful to remove. This film explores painful truths that come with a naked face and the courage that this takes.
Hutton is the star of this film, sorry Donald and Mary but you are just the support cast. Though they give convincing performances, it is Hutton that provides the depth and most of the emotion.
On the negative side, the flashbacks are a little ‘B’ grade but forgivable given the standard of the rest of the film. This was Robert Redford’s directorial debut; an intriguing and bitter sweet little number.
Move on to your next Heston experience and turn dull old burgers into something really special with this amazing recipe. It’s Heston’s Beef Burger recipe. Delish!
Ordinary People Trivia:
- Budget – $6 Million
- Timothy Hutton won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor, Robert Redford won for Best Director and Alvin Sargent won for Writing Adapted Screenplay.
- This film provided acting debuts for Hutton and Elizabeth McGovern (who now stars in Downton Abbey)
- Michael J. Fox tried out for the role of Conrad. Redford had it right with an unknown, otherwise it would be just a depressed Alex P. Keaton!
- All scenes were filmed on location except for the boating accident scene which was filmed on a film stage… and you can tell!
- Gene Hackman was going to play Dr Berger but pulled out, leaving Taxi star Hirsch to step in!
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