The Ballad of the Sad Cafe (1991)

PG-13   |    |  Comedy, Drama, Mystery

The Ballad of the Sad Cafe (1991) Poster

A tangled triangle. In the rural South of the early 20th century, Miss Amelia is the town eccentric, selling corn liquor and dispensing medicine. She takes in her half-sister's son, a ... See full summary »




  • Keith Carradine and Cork Hubbert in The Ballad of the Sad Cafe (1991)
  • Cork Hubbert in The Ballad of the Sad Cafe (1991)
  • Vanessa Redgrave in The Ballad of the Sad Cafe (1991)
  • Vanessa Redgrave in The Ballad of the Sad Cafe (1991)
  • The Ballad of the Sad Cafe (1991)
  • Vanessa Redgrave in The Ballad of the Sad Cafe (1991)

See all photos

Get More From IMDb

For an enhanced browsing experience, get the IMDb app on your smartphone or tablet.

Get the IMDb app

Reviews & Commentary

Add a Review

User Reviews

23 July 2008 | thisdjsucks
| Compelling film
I caught this film on IFC one night. I felt compelled to watch this because of the performances. I don't know anything of the book nor the play. I found the movie very enjoyable and the performances rather good. Miss Amelia's part was amazing to me. Vanessa Redgrave did a great job in this movie even if it doesn't fit the book or the play. She was the main reason I was drawn to watching this movie. I found that the part where Rod Steiger told the story of the "lover and the beloved" was the fulcrum of this film. I had the feeling that cousin Lymon was just like Marvin Macy. The character was a user who just latched onto people who he could take advantage of, that is why they get together in the end. They both met the same goal even if they both used Miss Amelia in different ways. I did find that the director could have done a better job with all the coordination between the characters, they could have meshed better. It's OK not to reveal why people act the way they do with each other (Miss Amelia kicking Marvin Macy out on the night of the wedding). Rod Steiger already stated that Marvin Macy was not a great person prior to this. I think that Miss Amelia just wouldn't let Marvin Macy take any advantage of her in any manner and it started on the wedding night. It boiled down to a boxing match between the two. The fact they both hit each other at the first punch and the look on Marvin's face hit this fact home.

That's my view.

Critic Reviews


Release Date:

June 1991



Country of Origin


Filming Locations

Austin, Texas, USA

Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,343 5 May 1991

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:


Contribute to this page

Reboots & Remakes We Can't Wait to See

From "Dexter" to The Suicide Squad, here are our picks for the reboots and remakes we're most excited for in 2021 and beyond.

Browse our picks

Unforgettable Oscars Fashion Through the Years

From the iconic to the eclectic, relive the most memorable moments from the Oscars red carpet.

See the full gallery

Around The Web


Powered by Taboola

More To Explore

Search on