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Bridges of Madison County
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The Bridges of Madison County

4.8 11

Cast: Clint Eastwood, Meryl Streep, Annie Corley, Victor Slezak


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The brief, illicit love affair between an Iowa housewife and a post-middle-age free-lance photographer is chronicled in this powerful romance based on the best-selling novella by Robert James Waller. The story begins as globetrotting National Geographic photographer Robert Kincaid journeys to Madison County in 1965 to film its lovely covered bridges. Upon his arrival,


The brief, illicit love affair between an Iowa housewife and a post-middle-age free-lance photographer is chronicled in this powerful romance based on the best-selling novella by Robert James Waller. The story begins as globetrotting National Geographic photographer Robert Kincaid journeys to Madison County in 1965 to film its lovely covered bridges. Upon his arrival, he stops by an old farmhouse to ask directions. There he encounters housewife, Francesca Johnson, whose spouse and two children are out of town. Thus begins their four-day affair, a liaison that fundamentally changes them both. Later Francesca chronicles the affair in a diary which her flabbergasted grown children read; never would they have expected their mother to be capable of the passion she experienced with Kincaid.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
A far better film than it really has any right to be, Clint Eastwood's adaptation of Robert James Waller's bestselling novel converts a breathlessly overwrought piece of writing into a moving melodrama in the classic mold. Though it starts badly and comes to a halt every time it returns to its modern day framing device, whenever the film concentrates on the illicit romance of Eastwood and Streep -- which is most of the film -- it serves as a model of understated direction and unimpeachable performances. An unlikely pairing of acting styles, Eastwood and Streep perfectly embody their unlikely lovers. Playing a woman realizing for the first time that she might not be resigned to a life of underappreciated boredom, Streep strikes the right note of nervousness and ecstasy. But unlike its most immediate model, Brief Encounter, since it dwells equally on both lovers, the film turns on Eastwood's performance. Here he transforms his character from a figure of fantasy into a fully-realized man who slowly recognizes his own unspoken loneliness. Though the film's final act drags on well past its emotional climax, as a director Eastwood -- working from a script by Richard LaGravenese -- elsewhere avoids indulgence and always stays away from overt sentimentality, allowing his film to work as a heartbreaking story of hard choices and unrealized dreams.

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Warner Home Video
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
[Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround]

Special Features

First-time widescreen video release [16x9 1.85:1]; Commentary by editor Joel Cox and director of photography Jack N. Green; An Old-Fashioned Love Story: Making the Bridges of Madison County; Doe Eyes music video; Theatrical trailer

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Clint Eastwood Robert Kincaid
Meryl Streep Francesca Johnson
Annie Corley Caroline
Victor Slezak Michael Johnson
Jim Haynie Richard Johnson
Phyllis Lyons Betty
Debra Monk Madge
Kyle Eastwood James River Band #6
George Orrison Cafe Patron
David Gilbert Voice Only

Technical Credits
Clint Eastwood Director,Producer
Bill Arnold Art Director
Willie D. Burton Sound/Sound Designer
Stephen Campanelli Camera Operator
Ellen Chenoweth Casting
Joel Cox Editor
Jack N. Green Cinematographer
Jay R. Hart Set Decoration/Design
Colleen Kelsall Costumes/Costume Designer
Kathleen Kennedy Producer
Richard LaGravenese Screenwriter
Michael Maurer Associate Producer
Lennie Niehaus Score Composer
Jeannine Oppewall Production Designer
Bruce Ricker Consultant/advisor
Steve Riley Special Effects

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- The Bridges of Madison County
1. Last Wishes and Revelations [5:49]
2. What Only Francesca Knew [3:10]
3. Known for All You Were [3:37]
4. Sunday Evening in 1965 [4:32]
5. Directions to a Bridge [3:33]
6. From Italy to Iowa [3:44]
7. Prep Work [4:25]
8. Dreams You're Glad Of [7:44]
9. Kitchen Chors [3:10]
10. Loving What You Do [5:33]
11. To Ancient Evenings [3:47]
12. Anything But Simple [5:20]
13. Invitation [3:48]
14. Eyes on Lucy Redfield [2:16]
15. Not Worried [2:10]
16. Holliwell Bridge [2:35]
17. Intensely Erotic [2:02]
18. Tell Me Now [1:57]
19. You Make Me Forget Myself [6:21]
20. Keepsake [3:37]
21. Jazz Joint [2:01]
22. My Suprising Mother [4:06]
23. Making My Way Here [4:36]
24. Another Invitation [7:17]
25. Francesca's Choice [2:25]
26. Safe Within Details [8:27]
27. Uncertain in the Rain [2:38]
28. Grateful for Silence [6:34]
29. Apology [2:03]
30. Legacy in a Box [2:17]
31. Words of Healing [4:06]
32. Go Well, My Children [2:24]
33. End Credits [1:18]


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The Bridges of Madison County 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I believe this movie should invite everyone, but particularly women, to explore Martyrdom that is inbedded in the social contructs of the patriarchal system. Given that we are all heart broken from this story, one should only conclude that we should not make sacrifices of this magnitude. Streeps character lived in a time when it was more depressive on women. But we should all be moved by the power of thier love and say, no man, husband, nor child, should want to chain someone to them for thier own selfish reasons, concealed in the notion of resposibilities. One should not be soley responsible for a spouse if one no longer loves them. Who would want that? I sure would not want someone to stay with me if they loved another. And certainly, financial and parental responsibilities can be met independently of a seperation. The movie was powerful in underscoring how pathetic and surpresive womans lives were and continue to be even today. I would hope that the viewers learn not to make the sacrifices that Streep made. It was tradgic to the end.
ERNurseIN More than 1 year ago
The book is absolutely the best book I have ever read. Movies never do a great read any justice :). Nevertheless the movie is good and I enjoyed it .
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
"Bridges..." is one of my favorite movies, but I have to remember it will make me cry. The acting is spot on, never giving away that Clint Eastwood and Meryl Street are actors instead of the actual individuals living this short, exquisite time together, while the photographer is on assignment. The story line succeeds at making your heart bleed along with the main characters as they long for each other but can't succumb to their mutual wants for a shared lifetime. In just a few days, they become completely enraptured with one another and a strong bond develops rapidly. Reality, though, pulls them apart and they realize their lives must go on as before. This movie is a wonderful example of how reality must be the winner if one has integrity. It is highly recommended, but do have a box of Kleenex nearby!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a story of two people that fall in love, but circumstance and timing does not allow them to be together. Very emotional love story that makes us ponder about life and the reality that befalls us all in the end: DEATH. So why not take a chance and be together instead of living a life without true love?
Guest More than 1 year ago
After seeing this movie I am left with the hope that everyone has an opportunity to feel this at least for a moment in their lifetime.I have been lucky enough to, and also unlucky enough to have had to let go of her. Overall one of the most magnificient movies I have ever seen!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I think the Bridges of Madison County was one of the best movies I have ever seen, from a book. The detail that LaGravenese brings to the screen is remarkable. He really makes a great book only better, by bringing it to life with two of the best actors that have ever graced a screen.He pays special attention to the details which is something I don't think most producers ever have a clue about. It is important to pay attention to detail when trying to capture a great book on film.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This movie was warm and realistice. Meryl Streep offers a brilliant and heart-rending portrayal of a woman who could have run from her responsibilites of home and family for love, but didn't. While her children momentarily think less of there mother for her transgressions long past, they also realize there is a truly never-ending love their mother kept locked in her heart even while she remained their father's wife and their mother. A good lesson for kids who think their parents never suffered the pathos of unrequited love! Clint Eastwood is a perfect partner for Ms. Streep and also gives a stellar performance.
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