Kramer Vs. Kramer is a film about the heartbreak of divorce and the struggle between work and family. Young husband and father, Ted Kramer (Dustin Hoffman) loves his family-and his job, which is where he spends most of his time. When he returns home late one evening from work, his wife Joanna (Merl Streep)confronts him and then leaves him, forcing Ted to become the sole caregiver to their six-year-old son, Billy. But just as Ted adapts to his new role and begins to feel like a fulfilled parent, Joanna returns and now she wants her son back.
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The review of this Movie prepared by Jessica
Ted Kramer has been putting his career ahead of his family. One day he comes home to discover his wife Joanna has left to "find herself," leaving their 6-year-old son Billy for Ted to handle. Now the career guy has to learn to tackle housekeeping and child care on his own. Things have reached a relatively even keel 18 months later, when Joanna shows up and says she wants to take Billy back, and a sticky court custody case ensues. Writer-director Robert Benton adapted the novel by Avery Corman for this 1978 film that won Oscars for Hoffman, Streep, two for Benton, and Best Picture. Newly-divorced Hoffman contributed a lot of situations and lines, to the point that Benton offered him shared screenwriting credit, but he turned it down. It's a solid movie with excellent performances, including Alexander as a sympathetic neighbor and JoBeth Williams as a sleepover who encounters the kid in the middle of the night. Justin Henry is terrific as Billy.
The review of this Movie prepared by David Loftus
“Kramer Vs. Kramer,” 1979's Best Film, depicts a thirtysomething father (Hoffman) getting to know his six-year-old son after his wife (Streep) suddenly leaves him. This news comes on “one of the four best days” of his life as Ted, an ad agency art director, lands a big account.
We then see Streep only a few more times, since there are no explanatory flashbacks. Still, as we observe the ongoing father-son interactions, we believe that Billy is with the better parent. Apparently, so does Ted's attorney (Howard Duff) who warns Ted that if a custody re-trial were necessary, he'd have to put Billy on the stand.
Billy, now a child of divorce, has some sweet moments including defying his father over ice cream and naively encountering Ted's new love interest who is walking in the hallway nude. More seriously, Ted is tested when Billy seriously falls from a Jungle Jim and must endure some stitches. Probably the best scene is Ted's one-day pursuit of a job after being fired. He delivers a Christmas party job-interview/speech which is probably the most convincing in the history of labor.
And convincing he must be. Armed with a new job and a well- documented love for his son, Ted prepares for the inevitable courtroom slugfest in which we finally learn his ex-wife's true motives for her behavior.
The review of this Movie prepared by Angry Jim Magin