Return of the Secaucus Seven (1979)

R   |    |  Drama


Return of the Secaucus Seven (1979) Poster

Seven former college friends, along with a few new friends, gather for a weekend reunion at a summer house in New Hampshire to reminisce about the good old days, when they got arrested on the way to a protest in Washington, DC.


7/10
1,892

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User Reviews


27 June 2008 | preppy-3
10
| Groundbreaking
John Sayles made this film for only $60,000 and only one person in the film had any previous acting experience. It's just amazing how well this turned out. It's about a couple (Mike and Katie) who invite all their college friends to spending the weekend in a cabin in New Hampshire. They all spent their college years as radicals...and now they're all turning 30. We learn who they were and how they are now. No big catastrophes or changes are made with any of the characters--we just see how these former radicals are now dealing with life. Sounds boring but I found it absolutely fascinating. The acting is all natural and realistic--I found myself actually believing these people all have been friends for 10+ years! The dialogue was sharp and on target...but John Sayles has always been a master at writing great scripts.

I was in my first year of college when this came out. It was a HUGE hit in Boston (I believe it played at one independent cinema for over a year!) and I saw it again and again. Even though I was too young to really identify with the characters (their moaning about turning 30 struck me as silly) I was fascinated by their characters and situations. They do discuss issues that were relevant in 1980--that's probably what I found so interesting. Seeing it now (28 years later) it's dated (of course) but still fascinating. The references to late 70s issues, politicians and life style may confuse younger viewers. Also it was interesting to see that casual sex and drug taking is shown as being OK! I also liked the surprising and casual male nudity in a skinny dipping sequence. (None of the female actors get nude but it seems the guys had no problem). This was later remade (sort of) in Hollywood as "The Big Chill". "The Big Chill" is an excellent COMMERCIAL film...this is an excellent independent film. This made John Sayles and is also David Strathairn's first film! Absolutely fascinating motion picture. I wish Sayles had revisited these characters again in 1990 and 2000--by the end I was really wondering what happened to this people. A one of a kind and a groundbreaking independent film that was very profitable. A must see!

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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film is considered a precursor (in theme, story and subject) to the larger-budget popular-soundtrack studio movie The Big Chill (1983) which was made a few years later. The film is often referred to being the inspiration for this movie but director Lawrence Kasdan denies ever having seen it before making The Big Chill (1983). Nonetheless, Return of the Secaucus Seven (1979) is considered the first of the modern wave of "friends reunion" movies and productions, this film being followed by The Big Chill (1983); Peter's Friends (1992); The Decline of the American Empire (1986); Everything Relative (1996); Indian Summer (1993); Grand Canyon (1991); The Myth of Fingerprints (1997); The Men's Club (1986); Beautiful Girls (1996); That Championship Season (1982) and the TV series Thirtysomething (1987). Interestingly, the reunion movies Jonah Who Will Be 25 in the Year 2000 (1976) and September 30, 1955 (1977) predate Return of the Secaucus Seven (1979).


Quotes

Norman: You people together?
J.T.: Uh-huh. We're in for, uh... What do you call deer murder?
Jeff Andrews: Bambicide.
J.T.: Right. Bambicide, right. And conspiracy to deprive a furry woodland creature of its civil rights.
Norman: Jacking deer, eh?
J.T.: What's your beef?
Norman: Drunk.
J.T.: No!
Norman: Drunk. Second time ...
Jeff Andrews: ...


Goofs

Camera shadow on the ground during the basketball game when JT falls down.


Soundtracks

The Boots They Come and the Boots They Go
© 1977 Folk Legacy Inc.
© 1978 Daring Enterprises
Written by
Bill Staines
Performed by Mason Daring and Jeanie Stahl

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