Watch: Sommersby 1993 123movies, Full Movie Online – Set in the south of the United States just after the Civil War, Laurel Sommersby is just managing to work the farm without her husband Jack, believed killed in the Civil War. By all accounts, Jack Sommersby was not a pleasant man, thus when he returns, Laurel has mixed emotions. It appears that Jack has changed a great deal, leading some people to believe that this is not actually Jack but an impostor. Laurel herself is unsure, but willing to take the man into her home, and perhaps later into her heart….
Plot: Set in the South just after the US Civil War, Laurel Sommersby is just managing to work the farm without her husband, believed killed in battle. By all accounts, Jack Sommersby was not a pleasant man, thus when he suddenly returns, Laurel has mixed emotions. It appears that Jack has changed a great deal, leading some people to believe that this is not actually Jack but an imposter. Laurel herself is unsure, but willing to take the man into her home, and perhaps later into her heart.
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|6.2/10 Votes: 22,107|
|62% | RottenTomatoes|
|N/A | MetaCritic|
|N/A Votes: 304 Popularity: 12.086 | TMDB|
Underrated Civil War drama with Richard Gere and Jodie Foster
Released in 1993 and directed by Jon Amiel, “Sommersby” stars Richard Gere as a Confederate soldier returning to his rundown estate in Tennessee and his wife, Laurel (Jodie Foster), after a long six years absence. Curiously, Laurel discovers that the war has changed Jack for the better. Bill Pullman plays his rival for Laurel’s affections while James Earl Jones appears as a judge in the final act.
This is such a well-done Civil War drama, taking place just after the war in 1866-1867. The story is contrived, but executed believably with convincing performances. Contrived or not, something like this COULD happen, if you reflect on it. I can’t say more because it’s best that you go into the movie without knowing the revelations of the final act. The first half is low-key, but it’s just a foundation for the realistic thrills of the mid-point and the suspenseful drama of the closing act.
The film runs 114 minutes and was shot in Virginia with the opening winter scene filmed at Snowshoe Mountain Ski Resort, West Virginia.
ADDITIONAL COMMENTARY ***SPOILER ALERT***
A clueless reviewer criticized the film on the grounds that “this story fell a bit flat for me when Jack, for some reason, doesn’t tell the same (true) story (that clarifies the identity confusion) to the court, that he does to his wife in the final jail scene.”
This is incredible because the movie plainly reveals several reasons why Jack didn’t want to tell the truth that he wasn’t really Jack Sommersby: (1.) The freed blacks and others who bought & farmed parts of his land would lose it; (2.) his wife & daughter would be condemned as an adulteress and a bastard child respectively; (3.) he “buried” Horace Townsend forever when he buried the real Jack Sommersby; he wasn’t willing to “resurrect” that wicked loser, even at the cost of his life.
And (4.) If jack was proved to be Horace, and was released, another court would have arrested him on the grounds that he was a liar, an impostor and a thief. That court would NOT have released him on the grounds that he had found love and done charitable things while impersonating a dead man. He would have gone to prison and possibly even died for his actual crimes.
So dying for a cause he believed in, for people who respected him, made more sense than dying without any honor or legacy whatsoever.
Affecting tale of love, loyalty, and nobility
Part of why this movie resonated so much with me was that I saw it right before I got married, and I thought, now THAT’S the kind of commitment a marriage needs. This is a rather sweet tale of love and sacrifice. Admittedly, it’s a bit far fetched at times, but if you buy into it, it is a rewarding movie.
John Robert “Jack” Sommersby (Richard Gere) went off to fight the Civil War, as did many plantation owners in the South, leaving his wife, Laurel (Jody Foster)and son (Brett Kelley) behind. Laurel is a resourceful woman, and she manages the farm on her own. When Jack is presumed dead, Laurel starts a relationship with her neighbor Orin (Bill Pullman). Consequently, neither of them is particularly happy when Jack turns up at the plantation after the war, Laurel because Jack didn’t treat her very well, and Orin because he wants Laurel. Still, Laurel feels she must honor her marriage vows, and breaks things off with Orin, who, being a rather poor sport, remains a continual thorn in Jack’s side. However, Laurel starts noticing that Jack is much different than when he left for the war. He is kinder, more loving, treats her and their son much better. She actually starts to fall in love with him. The farm prospers and Laurel gives birth to a baby girl that they name Rachel. And then one day, Jack is accused of murdering someone during the war. Suddenly the question of his identity becomes all important, because Jack Sommersby is guilty of murder, of that there is no question. But if this man is someone else pretending to be Jack Sommersby, then he is innocent. Of course, if he isn’t Jack Sommersby, then Laurel’s reputation is shot, as is Rachel’s. Who is this man that has been living with Laurel? Who will he choose to be?
It’s a rather intriguing premise, as by the end of the movie, Jack is in a no win situation, and his choice may not be what the viewer would expect. Still, the story is presented in such a way that you understand both Jack’s choice in spite of what he must sacrifice and Laurel’s willingness to stand by him in spite of what she must sacrifice. This makes for a most satisfying ending.
The acting was excellent. Gere gives a moving portrait of a man who discovers love, and discovers that love requires a nobility that he hadn’t realized he was capable of. Foster’s performance shows Laurel’s quiet determination to get through whatever she has to and survive as best she can. Pullman’s Orin comes off as increasingly whiny and spoiled, which works well for the character he creates. James Earl Jones’ judge is an excellent rendering. Of the smaller roles, the most notable is William Windom as the Reverend Powell, showing us that once again, no matter how small the part, he will give it his all.
Admittedly this is a tear jerker. I choke up just thinking of the ending. But it is ultimately a tale of nobility and sacrifice showing that sometimes we must sacrifice all to safeguard those we love.
Original Language en
Runtime 1 hr 54 min (114 min)
Genre Drama, Mystery, Romance
Director Jon Amiel
Writer Daniel Vigne, Jean-Claude Carrière, Nicholas Meyer
Actors Richard Gere, Jodie Foster, Lanny Flaherty
Country France, United States
Awards 2 nominations
Production Company N/A
Sound Mix Dolby Stereo
Aspect Ratio 2.35 : 1
Camera Panavision Cameras and Lenses
Laboratory DuArt Film Laboratories Inc., New York, USA (color), Technicolor, Hollywood (CA), USA (prints)
Film Length 3,029 m (Sweden)
Negative Format 35 mm
Cinematographic Process Panavision (anamorphic)
Printed Film Format 35 mm