6.7/10
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10 user 8 critic

Marie (1985)

PG-13 | | Drama | 27 September 1985 (USA)
A woman is determined to reveal the truth about an insidious political corruption. In doing so she risks her safety, career and reputation but will not stop asking questions until the truth is known.

Director:

Roger Donaldson

Writers:

Peter Maas (book), John Briley (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sissy Spacek ... Marie Ragghianti
Jeff Daniels ... Eddie Sisk
Keith Szarabajka ... Kevin McCormack
Morgan Freeman ... Charles Traughber
Fred Dalton Thompson ... Fred Thompson (as Fred Thompson)
Lisa Banes ... Toni Greer
Trey Wilson ... FBI Agent
John Cullum ... Deputy Attorney General
Don Hood ... Governor Blanton
Graham Beckel ... Charlie Benson
Macon McCalman ... Murray Henderson
Collin Wilcox Paxton ... Virginia
Robert Green Benson III Robert Green Benson III ... Dante Ragghianti
Dawn Carmen Dawn Carmen ... Therese Ragghianti
Shane Wexel Shane Wexel ... Ricky Ragghianti
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Storyline

It's the mid 1970s. Moving back home with her mother Virginia in Tennessee, Marie Ragghianti was able to leave an abusive marriage to eke out a better life for herself and her three young children - the youngest, Ricky, for who she would have to deal with his major health issues - by waiting tables, all the while being able to complete the degree requirements at Vanderbilt to obtain a B.A. in English and Psychology. She is unapologetic in asking a college acquaintance, Eddie Sisk, for a job, he who has just been appointed legal counsel for just elected Tennessee Governor Ray Blanton. In what he considers a win-win situation, Eddie offers Marie a job as the Extradition Officer for the state, a job offer which she accepts. From there, Marie quickly moves up the chain of command, first to become the liaison to the Governor via Eddie on Parole Board recommendations - the role which is meant to be a two way street, where there is an understood quid pro quo in recommendations from the Board... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

She challenged the state of Tennessee and put criminal justice on trial. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 September 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Marie: A True Story See more »

Filming Locations:

Wilmington, North Carolina, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$241,423, 29 September 1985

Gross USA:

$2,507,995

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,507,995
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Marie Ragghianti (Sissy Spacek), in real-life, and in this film, was the first woman to head the parole board in Tennessee. See more »

Goofs

The song playing in the nightclub a day or two after her son chokes on the pistachio, is "Honey Honey" by ABBA. That song wasn't recorded until January of 1974, and the screen had previously just read that it was 1973, moments earlier. See more »


Soundtracks

Honey Honey
By Benny Andersson (uncredited) and Björn Ulvaeus (uncredited)
Performed by ABBA
Courtesy of Polar Music International AB Sweeden
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Freedom for sale, with Fred Thompson as himself
11 September 2018 | by AlsExGalSee all my reviews

Sissy Spacek plays Marie Ragghianti, a single mother of three who escapes her abusive husband in Georgia, moves back to Tennessee and her mother, and gets her degree. After getting her degree, she meets old college friend Eddie Sisk (Jeff Daniels), an appointee of the new Governor, and he gets her a job in the clemency and extradition bureau. She does her job well enough that Gov. Blanton (Don Hood) eventually appoints her to the parole board. On the parole board, however, she learns there may be high-level corruption going on, with paroles and pardons being sold, as well as delays in extraditions. At every turn she's stymied, until the governor fires her. She sues for wrongful dismissal, hiring former Senate Watergate counsel Fred Thompson (playing himself). Also in the cast are Keith Szarabajka as the civil servant trying to win Marie's heart; and Morgan Freeman as a fellow Parole Board officer who not only isn't impossibly virtuous, but is in fact a bit of a bad guy.

The performances are good, especially Spacek's, and the trial scenes are particularly good, as there's little of the histrionics that generally appear in Hollywood courtrooms. In fact, the courtroom itself is pretty cramped and much less majestic-looking than in most movies. The movie is generally based on a true story, although I do wonder how much liberty was taken with that story since Ragghianti has to go through so much that it gets ridiculous by the end. The other problem with the movie is the heavy-handed music score, which makes it very obvious when Something Dramatic Is About to Happen. It was to the point that I started laughing when I heard the change in music. Still, don't let that put you off the movie. It is a solid film.


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